Imperial Beach... City History - City of Imperial Beach. The "modern"history of Imperial Beach started about June 1887 when R. R. Morrison a real estate developer, filed a subdivision map with the San Diego County Clerk. ... It's considered that the name 'Imperial Beach" was coined as part of a marketing strategy.
Imperial Beach encompasses nearly 4 miles (6.4 km) of beach and employs a year-round lifeguard staff. Beach volleyball, surfing and body boarding are popular in Imperial Beach with activities concentrated north and south of the Imperial Beach Pier and the Boca Rio beach break, one of San Diego County's best surf spots. San Diego Magazine identifies the Boca Rio beach break as the second best surfing location in the county, second only to Black's Beach and the Scripps Canyon area near La Jolla. The area around Imperial Beach Pier known as Pier Plaza showcases plaques placed on surfboard benches that tell the story of how the city's big waves influenced surfing from 1937 to the 1950s.