A Paddler’s Guide to Dana Point

Pacific Paddle Games, sUP Examiner, Dana Point, Doheny State Beach, OnIt Pro

Where to eat, drink and get your gear in Dana Point, California

Visiting a new location can be daunting. Options for dining are everywhere and there may be more than one paddle / surf shop in town. How do you separate the wheat from the chaff? You go where locals go. And when I’m in Dana Point, these are a few of my favorite spots.

JC Beans Coffee House

34114 Pacific Coast Hwy, Dana Point, CA 92629
Open: 4:00 am – 8:00 pm

Conveniently located along the PCH up the hill from the harbor, JC Beans is a good old-fashioned coffee-house. They keep things simple, serving up piping hot and fresh brews made to order alongside a selection of pastries and of course, a fantastic breakfast burrito.

RJ’s Cafe

25001 Dana Point Harbor Dr, Suite F120, Dana Point, CA  92629
Open: 6:30 am – 3:00 pm

Located near the harbor next to Jimmy’s Famous American Tavern, RJ’s is a good old fashioned SoCal style American diner. Open for breakfast and lunch, if you are looking for a hearty meal to line your stomach for the day, this is the place to be.

Jimmy’s Famous American Tavern

25001 Dana Point Harbor Drive Dana Point, CA., 92629
Open: 11:30 am Mon -Fri / 10:00 am Sat-Sun; Closes at 9:00 pm Sun – Thurs / 10:00 pm Fri & Sat

A raucous bar and grill atmosphere complete with outdoor fire pits, Jimmy’s is the place to be for a great meal, drinks and fun hanging out with your friends. The tavern hosts a happy hour Mon – Fri beginning at 3 pm with drink and food specials. Best of all, it’s just down the street from Doheny State Beach and the harbor.

Kamea Poke

34320 Pacific Coast Hwy, Dana Point, CA 92629
Open: 11:00 am – 8:00 pm

Paddlers love poke and you won’t find it any fresher than at Kamea. Tucked away in the strip mall behind Carl’s Jr. on the PCH just over the footbridge from Doheny State Beach, this is your go to spot for a healthy lunch or dinner. There are a handful of tables inside the small establishment with a couple more sprinkled outside. Walk over with your beach chair and have a tailgate party.

Infinity Surfboard Co.

24382 Del Prado Ave, Dana Point, CA 92629
Open: Mon – Sat 9:30 am – 6:00 pm / Sun 10:00 am – 5:00 pm

If you need to pick up a forgotten piece of gear or simply want to pay a visit to one of the cornerstones of the surfing and standup paddling industry, Infinity is a must do on any trip to Dana Point. With the fastest boards and the most innovative shapes, don’t be surprised if you get inspired and pick up a new addition to your quiver. While there, don’t forget to look up beyond the ample eye-candy to see some great pieces of surfing memorabilia.

Matt Chebatoris
About Matt Chebatoris 228 Articles
Matt is a former national security professional and lifelong adventurer. He has published material on a variety of topics in the foreign policy arena and created PaddleXaminer™ as a platform to share his enjoyment of paddling with others. When not on the water, Matt can be found hiking along rugged mountain trails in the California wilderness. Matt resides in Los Angeles and is a member of the Lanakila Outrigger Canoe Club in Redondo Beach, California.

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