The Hidden Pirate Tower in Laguna Beach
By Mark Logan
Photos by Mark Logan
Whether you’re looking for a low cost day-trip away from Los Angeles, or want to see something your friends don’t know about, check out the aptly named Pirate Tower near Laguna Beach.
In 1926 a senator from Los Angeles, William E. Brown, bought the property and built the tower to provide his family access to the beach. A (now rusted) spiral staircase leads from the cliffs above, down through the tower, and to the beach below. The design of the tower was inspired by castles William saw during his time in Europe.
William was not the only owner of the home, and throughout the years, the property exchanged hands. A famous Hollywood celebrity once lived there too: Bette Midler.
But Harold Kendrick was the most peculiar owner the home ever had. Harold loved pirates. He would apparently dress up as a pirate and place candy/coins around the tower for kids to find. You can see how the name Pirate Tower was coined. Certainly no actual pirates were involved.
The Pirate Tower is located on Victoria Beach, just south of Laguna Beach. It's two hours south of Los Angeles and is a tranquil place to go when the city becomes a drag. Here, you get the chill vibes of San Diego but without the longer drive.
How to get to the Pirate Tower
Pirate Tower Address: 2713 Victoria Dr., Laguna Beach, CA 92651
What makes this particular beach great is it’s hidden entrance. Your best bet is to park on Route 1 between Victoria Drive and Sunset Drive. Walk down Victoria Drive and where it intersects with Sunset, you’ll find the staircase to the beach!
Once on the beach, take some time to relax on the warm sand and watch the tide roll in, or start walking on the rocks towards your right. After a short walk you’ll see the Pirate Tower in all of its majestic glory. But there’s more to do before you get there!
On your way, you may see some birds resting on one of the few small islands. These islands are very close and easy to get to, but I don’t recommend jumping from one to another, as the rocks are slippery.
In my instance, I tied my phone up inside my shirt and threw it to each island. I hopped into the water and walked in the gentile tide to get there. Just make sure your aim is good; it’s not worth it to lose your phone!
I was able to snap some nice pictures of my seagull friend (above).
Be sure to take full credit for discovering this if you’re on a date. If you’re by yourself like I was, you’ll enjoy the peace, quiet, and awesome view. The tide rolls up and runs sand right through your toes! Definitely check this out while you’re there. You’ll find the cove just before you get to the Tower.
That’s it, get out there and enjoy! You can see more pictures from my travel adventures on Instagram @mark.logan56. If you've been to the Pirate Tower, let us know how you liked it in the comments. Don't forget to subscribe for more interesting travel ideas and inspirations!