enter image description here This is a beautiful beach, ocean picture that I am trying to identify. I hope someone can help me figure this mystery out.

  • Are you sure this is an actual place and not a work of Photoshop? Where did the image come from? Apr 16, 2016 at 23:45
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    I do not know the exact location of this beach, but the plant in the foreground is almost sure Carpobrotus edulis, or 'Ice Plant'. very common EVERYWHERE although it is native of south Africa - You can find it in the Mediterranean area California and all the US east coast , Indonesia etc .. But If I would have to venture a WILD guess based on the rock formation - I would say the Mediterranean ( even a small island ) or western Europe coast - But that`s just a wild guess Apr 17, 2016 at 2:11
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    @LightnessRacesinOrbit The only obvious fakeness to me is that the colour saturation has been pumped up to crazy levels. Do you have any particular reason to believe it's fake? Apr 17, 2016 at 3:06
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    @LightnessRacesinOrbit "It's obvious and I won't say why" isn't a very compelling argument. Apr 17, 2016 at 8:09
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    Though i don't have a definitive evidence to corroborate my answer, to me it looks like somewhere along the big sur coast in california
    – Rajesh
    May 5, 2016 at 5:42

4 Answers 4


This is a photo of Gray Whale Cove State Beach, taken from the Pacific Coast Highway.

Gray Whale Cove State Beach


This looks a lot like Gray Whale Cove State Beach in California, just south of San Francisco.
Your picture (while certainly 'photoshopped' to some degree) seems to have been taken from a similar viewpoint to the one tiny picture in image gallery on the California Parks & Recreation page for this location.
enter image description here


Whether or not this image represents a real location, there are several artefacts of image manipulation visible. In the top right there are interrupted lines visible. They resemble power lines to me, but either way, they have been clearly manipulated.

In addition, this error level detection algorithm shows high levels of manipulation in some areas, little manipulation in others.

As a result, I think it's fair to conclude that this is, as is, not a real location.

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    Just because the image has been photoshopped doesn't mean it's not based on an actual location: for example, I'm pretty sure that coastline is real. May 5, 2016 at 6:24
  • Of course true. Much, if not everything, in this image seems to be pulled from real photographs. But that also doesn't mean it is not a composite.
    – MastaBaba
    May 5, 2016 at 13:34
  • While the colors appear to have been enhanced, a good filter can do most of that; ice plant really is that colorful, for example. Several people have identified the spot the picture was taken from. As a result, I think it's fair to conclude that your analytic skills may not be as good as you think they are.
    – arp
    Jan 23, 2021 at 3:30

While I cannot identify the specific beach, that area looks very much like the California coast, especially the Devil's Slide section just south of San Francisco, in its ruggedness and the presence of the ice-plants, the whited rock, the fog, and the road (which would be Route 1) running along the cliff.

enter image description here

(Wikipedia photo of Devil's Slide)

The landscape in your picture is considerable greener than Northern California ever gets, but if you like dramatic cliffscapes, this is the place to visit.

Edit: Hahaha. Other people have identified your beach as Gray Whale Cove State Beach, which means it is about 20 feet south of the bottom edge of the photo I selected, more or less at random, to illustrate what the coast looks like. The promontory in the midground of the original picture is in the foreground (at high tide) in mine.

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