San Onofre State Beach area in San Clemente is a state park in San Diego County, California, that has 3,000 acres (1,214 hectares). The beach is located on Basilone Road, 3 miles (5 kilometers) south of San Clemente on Interstate 5. The United States Marine Corps has granted a lease to the state of California for the use of the state park.
In 1971, Governor Ronald Reagan founded San Onofre State Beach in the state of California. Having received over 2.5 million visitors per year, it is one of the top five most visited state parks in California, attracting swimmers and campers as well as kayakers, birders, anglers, bicyclists, sunbathers, and surfers, as well as visitors to the sacred Native American site of Panhe, which is located within the park.
Panhe at San Onofre is an Acjachemen hamlet that has existed for more than 8,000 years and is still used as a sacred, ceremonial, cultural, and burial place by the Acjachemen people. It is a sacred, ceremonial, cultural, and burial site. There are many Acjachemen people who can trace their ancestors back to Panhe. Among other things, it is the site of the first baptism in California, as well as the first close interaction between Spanish explorers and Catholic missionaries, as well as the first contact between the Acjachemen people, which occurred in 1769.
A number of organizations, including as the United Coalition to Protect Panhe and The City Project, are advocating for the preservation of the site. According to the Padres’ tradition of naming sections after patron saints, this area was named after St. Onuphrius, an unknown 4th-century Egyptian who lived during the time of the Roman Empire.
A six-lane toll motorway across San Onofre State Beach, other neighboring vulnerable natural regions, and specific Native American cultural sites was scrapped on November 10, 2016, according to the Transportation Corridor Agency. The announcement brings to a close more than a decade of effort to construct infrastructure in these locations. It was agreed upon that this route for the toll road would be abandoned as part of a settlement deal that brought various lawsuits launched by the California attorney general and a coalition of environmental groups to an end in order to prevent the project from going forward.
The San Onofre Bluffs section of San Onofre State Beach consists of 3.5 miles (5.6 km) of sandy beaches connected by six access routes built into the bluffs above the waterline. Located along the historic United States Route 101, the campground is near to the sandstone bluffs. Among the attractions of San Onofre are the San Onofre Bluffs and Beach regions, as well as the San Onofre Surf Beach, which serves as a day-use facility; the San Mateo campgrounds and day-use facility; and the Trestles, which may be reached through a nature route from the San Mateo Campgrounds. All beaches within the park are off-limits to those who are under the influence of alcohol.