The best beaches for a good old-fashioned Beach Bonfire. Break out the s'mores!

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Feel Free to Light Up at San Francisco's Ocean Beach

Where: Ocean Beach [map], San Francisco, CA, United States
June 29, 2009 at 1:32 PM | by | ()

Has anyone else noticed that the number of beaches left where you can have a bonfire party are few and far between? We understand it can be dangerous, especially if people don’t clean up after themselves properly, but heading back to the beach at midnight with a sweatshirt and s'mores is just about our favorite part of summer vacation.

So we're continuing with our map of beaches where you can still light up. California is the unquestionable leader in bonfire-friendly beaches, and San Francisco residents can enjoy a beach bonfire without even leaving the city, at Ocean Beach.

Fires are allowed only between Lincoln Way and Fulton Street (i.e. west of Golden Gate Park), they've got to be above ground, and no more than three feet in diameter. As long as you've got fewer than 25 people, you don't need a permit. Now who's bringing the lighter fluid and who's got the s'mores chocolate?

Related Stories:
· San Francisco Beach Bonfires [Official Site]
· Get Your Bonfire On At LA's Dockweiler Beach [Jaunted]
· Beaches travel coverage [Official Site]

[Photo: John Curley]

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Get Your Bonfire On At LA's Dockweiler Beach

Where: 12000 Vista del Mar [map], Playa del Rey, CA, United States, 90293
June 16, 2009 at 3:07 PM | by | ()

There are definitely some negative aspects to Los Angeles' Dockweiler Beach. It's at the end of LAX's runway in Playa del Rey and sits directly below planes' flight paths, requiring beach goers to tune out and talk around low flying passenger jets.

In August 2000 an engine part actually fell off a 747 and landed on the beach. It's also adjacent to a sewage treatment plant that you can smell and overshadowed by electricity towers that you can see. Oh - and recently the beach has developed something of a gang problem.

All that said, Dockweiler remains one of LA's more interesting beaches. The west-facing shoreline's proximity to LAX also means that it's accessible by all the freeways that converge on the airport. It's got the requisite bike paths and volleyball nets. The parking lot has 2000+ spaces, more than most other state beaches.

And most importantly it has dozens and dozens of fire pits, drawing in everyone from high school kids to RV campers to weekend revelers.

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