Dive into California’s Underwater Parks!
Explore California’s Underwater Parks without getting your feet wet through a new online tour! The California Google MPA Tour features detailed descriptions of each of the state marine protected areas, National Marine Sanctuaries, and National Estuaries, with stunning photos and videos, and links to local “things to do” for your enjoyment and ease of vacation planning.
Morro Bay State Marine Recreation Management Area (SMRMA) includes most of Morro Bay, except the tidal flats to the east of the state park. Morro Bay is a treasure, with the famous rock at the mouth, and the boat docks along the Embarcadero. You can rent kayaks or take a tour, paddle over to the long sand spit that connect to Montaña de Oro State Park, stay in one of the lodges along the water, or watch the waterfowl nesting in the trees.
Passed by the California State Legislature in 1999, the Marine Life Protection Act (MLPA) required the California Department of Fish and Wildlife to redesign its system of marine protected areas (MPAs) to increase its coherence and effectiveness at protecting the state’s marine life, habitats, and ecosystems. For the purposes of MPA planning, a public-private partnership commonly referred to as the MLPA Initiative was established, and the state was split into five distinct regions (four coastal and the San Francisco Bay), each of which had its own MPA planning process. All four coastal regions have completed these individual planning processes. As a result, the coastal portion of California’s MPA network is now in effect statewide.