Stunning Rocky Point Beaches:  2023 Guide


The Rocky Point Beaches are no secret to the people in the southwest.  With 55 miles of diverse coastline, it is easy to understand why Rocky Point Beaches are so popular.

While Rocky Point or Puerto Penasco lies in the Sonoran Desert, the western border is literally The Sea of Cortez.  The calm clear waters and soft sand are inviting to visitors and locals throughout the year.

Relax and enjoy the warm sun, soft sand, and soothing waves at any one of these stunning Rocky Point beaches.


Which Rocky Point beach will you visit?


Pelican Beach

Pelican Beach sits at the far northern end of Puerto Penasco in the Cholla Bay community.  During low tide, the shore becomes a resting place for flocks of brown pelicans.  A hearty buffet of crabs, clams, and shrimp keeps the pelicans happy.   Locals too enjoy tide pools, swimming, and water sports in Pelican Beach.  Parking can be difficult for visitors, which makes Pelican Beach a favorite with locals.

Arch doorway leading to beach.


Sandy Beach:

Just south of Pelican Beach sits Sandy Beach, home to watersports and off-road racing fun.

From horseback riding on the beach to kite surfing, you can find something fun to do.  You can rent jet skis or take a banana boat adventure from the Sandy Beach area.  Of course, the calm water and soft sand are inviting if you want to relax.

High-rise resorts such as the Sonoran Sea Resort and Bella Sirena are perfect for a weekend getaway or a family vacation.   Nearby, Wrecked on the Reef offers food, music, and a seriously good time.  For campers, there is an adjoining RV Park.

Across the road from the resorts are the sand dunes.  How do you feel about renting an ATV and playing in the sandbox?

Robb and I scheduled a guided tour on ATVs, that took us up on the rocky bluffs overlooking the ocean.  The view from above the beach is outstanding and it can only be reached by ORV.  Be aware though, the rocks and cliffs are quite dangerous.

Off Road Racing is popular here in Sandy Beach.  Hill climbs are especially exciting to watch and participate in if you have the right equipment.  In any event, wear goggles and a neckerchief to protect yourself from the blowing sand.

 Sand dunes at rocky point beaches.


Playa Hermosa / Playa Bonita:

Stretching from Sandy Beach to the edge of town is Playa Hermosa and Playa Bonita.  The soft sand and gentle waves make this beach perfect for a morning walk or a sunset celebration.

Seasonal RVers enjoy beachfront camping at its best on Playa Bonita.  Between the gorgeous views and affordable prices, it is understandable.

Along the beach, you can find tasty restaurants, tiki bars, and even a beach massage.  Calle 13 is within walking distance with beach access near the Penasco del Sol Hotel and Conference Center.

Sunset is our favorite time of the day on Playa Bonita.  Watching the sky turn from sunshine yellow to cotton candy pink and blue is beautiful.  However, when the sky turns blood red and black with layers of ripples, look out, it is mesmerizing.

Long stretch of white sandy beach.

Mirador Beach

Along the southern side of Puerto Penasco, is Mirador Beach.  Mirador Beach is close to downtown and popular beach bars, like Manny’s Beach Bar.

Spring Breakers flock to Mirador Beach during February and March.  The vibe here at Mirador Beach is party-central and a lot of fun.

Like the other quieter beaches, the water is calm and the sand is soft.  So grab your floaties and jump in!  the water is fine!

Dinosaur on rocky point beaches.


Las Conchas Beach:

Las Conchas is one of Puerto Penasco’s finest stretches of beach.  With 6 miles of pristine sand and shallow waters, you can feel relaxed and set apart from the hustle of daily life.

Las Conchas is a private community, where you will find full-time residents as well as beach house rentals.  The quiet neighborhood and limited public beach access allow residents privacy and a feeling of seclusion.

Remember, all Puerto Penasco Beaches are public.  However, please don’t trespass through private property to access them.  Park in designated areas and not in private driveways or resort parking lots.

Quiet stretch of  sandy beach in rocky point.


La Playa Jolla and Playa Encanto:

Located 15 minutes outside of town, just south of Estero Morua, are La Playa Jolla and Playa Encanto.

Here, you can feel as though you are on your own private island.  Kayak, jet ski, or just soak up the sun here on one of Puerto Penasco’s quiet beaches.

Estero Morua is known for its tidal fluctuations, so be sure to check on the tides before venturing into this area.  Low tide can stick you on a sandbar for hours.

If seashell hunting is your hobby, you will be rewarded with fascinating treasures.  For star gazers, the night sky is perfect, as there isn’t much ambient light in the area.

La Playa Jolla Beach and Playa Encanto are perfect places for a romantic beach day or night.


Playa Dorado and Playa Mirimar:

Continuing south is the less populated stretch of beaches, Playa Dorado and Playa Mirimar. This area is about 30 minutes away from downtown Puerto Penasco.  Although there are plans to develop residential and commercial properties here, it seems like more of a ghost town.

Since the area is remote and quiet, beachfront rental properties are popular with those visitors wanting to “get away from it all”.   For the few residents and curious explorers, these beaches are perfect.

Housing construction near quiet puerto penasco beaches.

The Mayan Palace Beach:

Just 45 minutes south of downtown Puerto Penasco is the Mayan Palace Resort.  This super luxurious resort is home to a 2-mile stretch of pristine beachfront.  Although you don’t need to be a guest at Mayan Palace to access the beach, you will wish you were.

Relax on the soft sand, enjoy the calm waters or take a nap in the warm sun.

There are no bad days here.

Beach view from pool in mayan palace resort.

The Mayan Palace Beach:

Just 45 minutes south of downtown Puerto Penasco is the Mayan Palace Resort.  This super luxurious resort is home to a 2-mile stretch of pristine beachfront.  Although you don’t need to be a guest at Mayan Palace to access the beach, you will wish you were.

Relax on the soft sand, enjoy the calm waters or take a nap in the warm sun.

There are no bad days here.


Rocky beachfront and blue ocean.


Water Temperature in Puerto Penasco


Although the average winter water temperature in Puerto Penasco is only 61 F, it is not unusual to see people in the water wading and even swimming.

While the Summer sun heats the water to a tepid 83 F, the Fall water temperatures in Puerto Penasco range around a comfortable 77 F.

Grab a towel and jump in the water!


Tidepools and Sea Shells


As the name implies, Puerto Penasco or Rocky Point, you can find a rocky coastline as well.  As the tides change, water is trapped in the rocks creating natural pools.

For shell hunters, it is not unusual to find a small octopus, fascinating shells, and sand dollars in the tide pools.  As the tide comes back in, these mysterious creatures and rocky coastlines will be hidden once again.

Tide pools on puerto penasco beaches.

Tide Charts Are IMPORTANT


The tides in Puerto Penasco are quite dramatic.  The fluctuation can sometimes be up to 24 feet.  Because the beaches have such a gentle slope, the water line can recede pretty far.  It is not unusual to see swimmers way out in only knee-deep water.

Cholla Bay, aka Tucson Beach, provides a prime example of these crazy tides.   Low tide makes the beach a perfect place for families to play, as you can park right up to the water’s edge.

A few years ago, during the “spring” high tide, the area quickly flooded leaving a few dozen cars submerged.

Several months later, Tropical Storm Rosa hit the area destroying some of the surrounding streets.  Barricades were placed to prevent visitors from parking along the beach now.




The sunset on the Rocky Point Beaches is spectacular.  As you watch the sun drop into the sea, the sky can turn brilliant with shades of orange, yellow, red, and purple.  Sometimes the sky appears to be on fire!

It’s no wonder why Rocky Point Beaches are a favorite snowbird location for RVers, retirees, and even spring breakers.


Colorful dramatic sunset on the rocky point beaches.


Rocky Point Beaches Conclusion


Although beach access is limited at some of these beaches, there are no private beaches in Puerto Penasco.  In other words, you can soak up the sun and play in the water, as long as you don’t trespass through someone’s yard.

Each of the Rocky Point Beaches brings a unique experience to both locals and visitors.  With beachfront home rentals, fabulous resorts, and RV Campgrounds there are plenty of lodging options.

After a day on the beach Puerto Penasco offers plenty of things to do from a stroll down the Malecon to a relaxing dinner there are many possibilities.

Grab a towel, or beach chair and slap on some sunscreen.  The Rocky Point beaches are waiting for you!

Travel Safe and Adventure Often!

Happy couple standing on a rocky point beach.