We get emails almost daily asking "Where can I find sea glass?" And though we wish time would allow us to answer each email, we can say that "contemporary" sea glass can be found on most every shore in the world; and along all continent's coasts.
Some of the world's best locations include Hawaii, California, Florida, Japan, England, Scotland, the Caribbean, North Atlantic, New Jersey, and even the Great Lakes. It's difficult to narrow it down by country or city. Many collections are gathered piece by piece from many shores over decades sometimes.
I'm a collector who highly respects the discovery and solitude of the adventure. Likewise, for many people, sea glass hunting is a challenge that's defined over many combined seasons and years. Therefore, refining the searching experience itself is part of the allure, the mystery and the journey for each individual seeker.
But here are several important factors that will help make a good hunt:
-Check the local tide charts for the beach you'd like to visit.
-Search at low tide and make sure you pay attention to the high tide strands
-Search in a location where there's older settlement history of communities that would have used glass products.
-If it's safe, finding a beach near where there used to be dumping history can be very helpful.
-The mouth's of rivers where they open up to the sea or lake can sometimes show a concentration of sea glass
-Rocky shore terrain and pebble washes seem to "hang onto" seaglass more often than wide stretches of sandy beach.
Keep in mind that a "good" sea glass beach can be many different things to many different people. We recently did a survey of over 50 different collectors who rated what they look for most in a good sea glassing location. But most importantly enjoy the beach and help take care of it.
As you collect, please make a point of staying sensitive to local communities, private properties as well as shore preservation and restoration regulations.
100% of the West Coast Sea Glass collection is hand picked by us and a couple of friends. We've covered countless beach miles by foot and kayak, mostly along the rugged Pacific coast from Mexico to Kodiak Island, Alaska as well as the Pacific Northwest's Salish Sea Shores.