Forest & Beach

Scenic Path, Carmel Beach


The Department of Forest and Beach is responsible for the maintenance of and improvements to the urban forest, all City parks, and the Carmel beach. Three employees take care of all arboricultural needs of the over 13,000 trees growing on public property. The majority of their time is spent pruning, planting, watering, treating insects, and removing dead trees. Keeping the urban forest healthy and safe is the Department's primary goal.

The Gardeners and Maintenance Workers are responsible for all other landscaping in the City, including parks, medians, and the Beach Walkway. The Department provides staff support to the Forest and Beach Commission related to matters before it for consideration.


If you plan on having more than fifty people, catered food, support of any commercial enterprise, require any type of city staff support (personnel or equipment), use of a generator or request an exemption from current City Codes, rules, regulations, restrictions, and policies governing activities on City property, then you may be required to obtain a Special Event Permit. If you require a permit you will need to provide the city with a Certificate of Liability/Endorsement Page. Please call 831-620-2020 for complete insurance requirements and applicable fees and contact us well ahead of your event when requiring a permit (minimum of 60 days).

For large gatherings we recommend that you notify residents in the immediate neighborhood of an upcoming event so that they will be less alarmed about any noise or increased traffic generated.

If you have any questions or require a Special Event Permit, please contact Margi Perotti, Community Services at 831-620-2020, PO Box CC, Carmel-by-the-Sea, CA 93921 or email at or

We hope you enjoy a lovely event and thank you for your cooperation with the following regulations. It would be our wish that you take away beautiful memories and leave only your footprints.

I. NOISE REGULATIONS: (Sound Permit $25) Live music and sound production equipment are allowed with the following conditions:

A) Carmel Municipal Code 8.56.085: Allowed between 9:00 a.m. – 10:00 p.m., and not to exceed a range of 25 feet.

B) California Penal Code 415(2): Any person who willfully disturbs another person by loud and unreasonable noise.

II. Cater Food: You may be required to obtain a Special Event Permit (call for applicable fees) if you plan on having your event catered. The caterer will have to have a valid business license with the City of Carmel-by-the-Sea. The license can be purchased at City Hall in the Community Planning and Building Department. (Large catering trucks are not permitted on Scenic Drive or the Del Mar area. Food vending trucks are not permitted within the city limits.)

III. Warming Fires: The following restrictions apply to warming fires on the beach:

All warming fires must be extinguished by 10:00 p.m.

  1. Warming fires are permitted only south of 10th Avenue.
  2. No warming fires larger than 3’ x 3’ x 3’.
  3. All warming fires must be at least 25 feet from the slopes.
  4. Do not burn trash or any wood containing nails or sharp objects.
  5. Extinguish warming fires with water not sand or leave the coals open and visible to pedestrians.

IV. TEMPORARY STRUCTURES and ENCLOSURES: Tents, canopies or similar structures and enclosures are not allowed. You must provide your own garbage cans/bags and recycle bins in order to leave the area litter-free. It is your responsibility to leave the area you use clean. NO HAY BALES! PACK IT IN - PACK IT OUT!

Alcohol is allowed only on the beach. No alcohol is allowed on the roadway, the pathway, or after 10:00 p.m. NO SMOKING IS ALLOWED ON THE SCENIC PATHWAY, ACCESS TO THE BEACH OR ON CARMEL BEACH PROPER.


  1. Only use stairways or designated points for Beach Access. No foot traffic allowed on beach bluffs.
  2. Do not throw items such as firewood, chairs, barbecues, etc. down or over the beach bluffs.

VII. PARKING: Parking is allowed without charge along Scenic Road until midnight.