West Coast National Marine Sanctuaries
There are 12,843 square miles of national marine sanctuaries on the West Coast; these marine protected areas are found in the Channel Islands, Cordell Bank, Gulf of the Farallones, Monterey Bay and Olympic Coast. Each of the five west coast national marine sanctuaries is a jewel unto itself.
Through education, conservation, science, and stewardship, these special swaths of ocean provide protection to extraordinary natural and cultural resources so that nature can thrive, historic shipwrecks and artifacts remain respectfully in place, cultural connections remain strong, and recreation & tourism can be enjoyed and sustained. Obviously, the ocean is part of what makes traveling to Coastal California so appealing! Andâ€¦ healthy oceans are key to healthy economies. We look forward to your upcoming visit to these beautiful areas.
Visitor Centers: Gateways to your national marine sanctuaries
One of the best ways to become familiar with National Marine Sanctuaries, and to have a richer experience in connecting with the ocean, is to visit one of the several Visitor Centers adjacent to Highway One and along the west coast. These free centers provide an orientation experience that better equips visitors and locals alike to get out there and enjoy these national treasures!