Part of the largest and most ecologically diverse dunes complex in California, this popular state park offers a huge array of activities in a 3,600-acre coastal playground. This is one of the only places in California where you can drive or ride off-highway vehicles on the beach and sand dunes (1,500 acres are open to OHVs.) Hike, ride horses, kiteboard, join a Hummer tour, or rent an ATV or a dune buggy and cruise up the white-sand peaks for spectacular views. At Oso
Flaco Lake Nature Area —3 miles west of Highway 1 on Oso Flaco Road—a 1½-mile boardwalk over the lake leads to a platform with views up and down the coast. Leashed dogs are allowed in much of the park except Oso Flaco and Pismo Dunes Natural Reserve. Amenities: food and drink; lifeguards (seasonal); parking (fee); showers; toilets; water sports. Best For: sunset; surfing; swimming; walking.