Outdoor Learning Place
Point Lobos offers a multitude of learning opportunities for individuals, families, school children, and children of all ages. There is something about just being in a beautiful, natural place that whets the appetite for learning and personal development.
Individuals can learn about the world just by using their senses. Many visitors are surprised to see how large a sea otter is, when their frame of reference may be the smaller river otters they have seen near their home or frolicking in videos. One can pick up the aromatic scent of California sagebrush on a walk down a trail amid the coastal scrub, and hear the barking of our “choir” of sea lions out on Sea Lion Rocks. When the surf is pounding there is often a taste of salt in the air. And visitors can feel the sticky underside of the leaves of “sticky monkey” flower and can feel the softness of the sea otter pelt at the Information Station.
When you have questions, many of them are already answered on the very useful brochure and map that you can purchase at the Reserve entrance, Information Station, or Whalers Cabin. And there are almost always docents at one of those places or out on the trails. See Where to Get Help.
Point Lobos offers parents many opportunities to introduce their children to nature, and to nurture an appreciation and affection for it. See Family Learning.
Teachers love bringing their classes to Point Lobos to experience nature while learning about animals, plants, geology, and a myriad of other subjects via a docent-led guided walk. Dozens of such walks are offered every year, and the demand for them is very great. See Programs for Schools. Our desire to fulfill this demand, in order to give more young people the experience of nature, exceeds our ability to provide enough school walk leaders. Our docent group is always trying to recruit more walk leaders from its ranks, trying to leverage the enthusiasm of the current walk leaders to entice others to join in the fun. One such attempt was a video shown to all docents. An abbreviated version of the video is seen below.
A special program, funded by the Point Lobos Foundation with generous support from the Pebble Beach Company Foundation, offers transportation grants for classes from schools in economically disadvantaged areas within a certain radius of Point Lobos. Teachers bringing their classes to Point Lobos under this program also may schedule a presentation in the school by a docent before the trip. See Experiencing Point Lobos.
Finally, California State Parks and the Point Lobos Foundation offer the highly acclaimed Summer Adventures program for youth 8 to 12 years old. The two sessions offered each summer often fill rapidly after the registration opens early in the year, so you might want to check in with the Summer Adventures page to see when it is available.