July 4 is fast approaching, and San Clemente is one of the best spots to celebrate our independence: the obligatory fireworks off the pier, miles of beaches, an unsanctioned and dozens of shops, bars and restauraunts.
But to celebrate in San Clemente -- if you don't live here -- come extremely early. This will solve a whole host of problems: You'll get a good parking spot, you'll get a good spot at the beach and you'll avoid traffic.
Have someone in your party designated to hold your spot on the beach if you go off to the store or for a walk. Roping off parts of the beach for private use, as you'll see from the city's July 4 press release below, is a no-no.
If you're situated north of the pier, consider hiking down to the boardwalk bridge halfway between North Beach and the pier; if you hang out there, you can get a great view of the San Clemente fireworks off the end of the pier, as well as the Dana Point and Laguna Beach shows in the distance up the coast.
And no booze on public property or personal fireworks of any kind.
For more July 4 nuts and bolts, see the following press release from the city of San Clemente:
At 9 p.m. the City continues its annual tradition and will present a spectacular fireworks display from the Municipal Pier. The end of the Pier, opposite the entrance, will close at noon July 3 for preliminary preparation and the entire Pier will close on July 4 at 8 a.m. and remain closed for the entire day.
The Fisherman’s Restaurant will be accessible to its patrons.
Ocean access surrounding the Pier and access under the Pier will be prohibited during the show. It is critical that surfers, body borders and swimmers remain 1,000 feet away from the end of the Pier.
This represents a 1,000 foot perimeter around the entire Pier and must be kept clear as a safety precaution to keep people out of harm’s way from the fallout from fireworks.
For pedestrian safety and to avoid major traffic problems, San Clemente Police Services will be restricting vehicular traffic between approximately 6 and 10 p.m. in the entire lower Pier Bowl area adjacent to the Pier.
The lower Pier Bowl will be closed from 5:00 to 10:00 p.m. Pedestrians should take caution -- especially with the increased crowds--to stay clear of the train tracks. The municipal beach and pier will be closed to the public after the fireworks display until the morning of July 5.
Following the fireworks show, San Clemente Police Services will conduct traffic control and assist people in exiting the Pier Bowl, diverting them in a systematic fashion to freeways and surface streets.
There will be three designated routes out of the Pier Bowl, including:
- Palizada and directed to the freeway at Palizada or north onto El Camino Real (two lanes will be open on El Camino Real).
- Del Mar and diverted onto Presidio.
- Victoria and diverted southbound onto the freeway at Valencia and Calafia.
Although other intersections/streets may not be closed, please expect all Pier Bowl streets to be impacted by the exit route. Additionally, during this time the following streets will be closed:
- East Palizada/Seville
- East Seville/Del Mar
- East Palizada/Puente
- East Ola Vista/Palizada
- Del Mar/Ola Vista
- East Victoria/Ola Vista
- El Camino Real/Palizada
- Del Mar/El Camino Real
- Victoria/El Camino Real
- El Camino Real/Presidio
When leaving the beach, people are asked to take their trash with them. Any trash and litter remaining on the beach will end up polluting the ocean.
Roping or blocking-off portions of the beach for private use is not permitted.
The City of San Clemente has ordinances prohibiting any fireworks, including Safe & Sane fireworks within the City limits, and ordinances prohibiting the consumption of alcoholic beverages on the beach and Pier.
In addition, cars should not be parked in the red zones. San Clemente Police Services will strictly enforce these ordinances.