There's a lot more to California beaches than the ubiquitous volleyball games, beach bonfires and surfers. This bunch of beaches all offer something unusual for you to see.
The sand on this beach is purple. Honest. At first, it looks like someone spilled a package of grape Jell-o on the sand, but the hue actually comes from tiny garnets that wash down from the hillside above.
This unique beach in Fort Bragg is possibly the prettiest thing that ever happened to a city dump. Decades later, all the broken glass has been tumbled and softened in the surf, leaving the beach covered with colorful, polished glass shards.
OK, they're not real bowling balls, but the rocks on Mendocino's most photogenic beach do resemble the real thing. Go at low tide to get the best look.
Unusual for the human activity on and around it, Oceano is the only California beach you can drive a vehicle onto. In the nearby dunes, you'll find a cadre of plucky drivers kicking up sand as they take their Off-Highway vehicles over the contours.