Wheelchair Access At San Diego Beaches

With the summer beach season in full swing, thousands of visitors and residents will flock to San Diego’s world famous beaches.

With an array of options available to have fun in the sun, the City of San Diego takes proactive steps to ensure that as many people can enjoy the sand and the water as possible. 

The City’s free Beach Wheelchair Program is one such program that gives those with mobility impairments the opportunity to explore the sand and get closer to the water than they ever could before.

All City of San Diego beaches offer free push beach wheelchairs with specially designed wheels to move easily over sand. 

At Mission Beach, the City offers electric wheelchairs which allows the rider to operate the chair independently to provide maximum access to the beach.

Electric wheelchairs are available free to the public for one hour sessions.

Reservations are recommended but not required. 

In addition to summer months, the program is available to San Diegans and visitors alike from March through December.

The public can check out push beach wheelchairs from City of San Diego lifeguard stations.

Electric wheelchairs can be checked out from the beach wheelchair office adjacent to the Mission Beach lifeguard station.

“The program is for everyone, from children to adults, anyone with any kind of accessibility or mobility impairment who wants to access San Diego beaches,” said Jon Richards, Supervising Recreation Specialist, with the City’s Park and Recreation Department.

The Beach Wheelchair Program is a part of Therapeutic Recreation Services, a division of the Park and Recreation Department.

Therapeutic Recreation Services provides sports and recreation programming and leisure and outreach opportunities to people with physical, mental and emotional disabilities.

Photo Credit: City of San Diego

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