SM BEACH — The beach is an ideal destination to take your sweetheart this Valentine’s Day. Whether it is a seaside picnic or a walk along the shoreline during the shimmering sunset, simply slip your hand into theirs and you will be sure to win them over.

Santa Monica-based environmental watchdog Heal The Bay is here to help with their top picks for the most romantic and healthy beaches across the West Coast.

Heal the Bay’s most romantic beaches:

1. Encinal Canyon, El Matador in Malibu: The “Ocean Lover’s Choice,” this secluded rocky cove won Heal the Bay’s online poll, which asked supporters to share their favorite romantic beach.

2. Abalone Cove in Rancho Palos Verdes: The perfect picnic spot and another popular pick from their ocean-loving supporters features tide-pool exploration and whale watching.

3. Laguna Beach in Orange County: From Blue Lagoon to Victoria Beach, these beaches consistently rack up perfect scores and are renowned for their soft sand, perfect for a sunset stroll.

4. Stinson Beach in Marin County (North and South): One of the cleanest beaches in the state, Stinson Beach also boasts proximity to the majestic Muir Woods.

5. Morro Strand Beach along the Central Coast: A coastal frontage park with spectacular views of Morro Rock. A prime spot for forging romantic memories.

6. Sunset Beach in Santa Cruz County: This rugged beach south of Santa Cruz features pine trees, sand dunes and a serene spot to watch the sun set.

Want to view the full list of the West Coast’s top contenders? Visit for more information or download the free mobile app for iPhone and Android.

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