El Matador

Around the time of spring in 2018, I definitely dealt with a lot of twists and turns. To manage the stress that came along with this, I would usually listen to music or go out with friends. At times I would hike, though this activity wasn’t always the most convenient as a spur of the moment choice. Though my mental health seemed to need something more calming and natural, that wasn’t a late night out at a concert. That being said, nature was not one of my go-to’s when relaxing. That was until one of my surfer friends chose what we were going to do once we would meet up. Perhaps frustrated that our friends rarely suggested beach activities when brainstorming how to expand our recreational time, my friend was determined to unveil the once hidden gems that are Malibu’s beaches. My psyche and I have been grateful ever since. My favorite of the lot is El Matador; something about it is just so positive and refreshing.

The very welcoming entrance of El Matador

The day I decided to explore this beach for this post, wasn’t a particularly good one. I had been sick, and the heat seemed to be making my life a real hell. Once I got to the beach, every problem in mind disappeared. As soon as I got out of my car, there were friendly older people leading the way to trail down to the shore. I descended before most of them, other than the first gentleman to make it to the bottom, who, upon turning around and noticing me, immediately wanted to know what I was all about. His wife joined us as we chatted and eventually said our goodbyes, and I walked along the beach and wound up near the second cave on the shore. I realized I could not see a way through to the other side, which lead to more shoreline. Noticing my interest, a friendly woman with a giant sunhat approached me with her pieces of advice, were I to attempt a journey through to the other side. I thanked her and decided I wasn’t going to go through the cave alone.
As I walked away, still, looking back and trying to see a way through that I perhaps hadn’t previously noticed, another stranger noticed me. This was a small woman with a lot of life in her. Running up to me, she excitedly asked: “Do you wanna go in the cave?!” Now, I couldn’t lie to this stranger, so I answered: “Fuck yeah!!”. Within seconds we were soaking wet, scaling the inside of this cave. Making it to the other side with a bit of trial and tribulation (the tide was high so we were holding on), we encountered the wife I met earlier.

Reporting from inside the belly of the beast

I introduced the two and we hit it off, of course. After chatting, we decided to go back to the other side and eventually parted ways. As I left these women and decided I’d end my beach day on a high note, I ran into, you guessed it, giant hat woman. Once again, we chatted, this time about our lives, goals, dreams, and aspirations until we finally got back to our cars and bid our farewells.
Beaches like these are beautiful not only for obvious aesthetic reasons, but also for the energy and vibrance it gives those whom appreciate it. It has proven quite difficult to be down in the dumps every single time I have visited this beach for some reason or another. Something about it just seems to clear the mind. If there aren’t amazing passersby exploring their curiosities, there are amazing views of the ocean, cliffs, caves, marine life, and a view of the Channel Islands. This is the perfect beach to go when, as Drake put it, “life comin’ at you from all angles and sides” (“Is there More?”). Experiencing any of El Matador’s many beauties is a guaranteed mental cleanse.

2 thoughts on “El Matador

  1. Ariana McLaughlin says:

    Wow this is such a fun post Marcella! It was refreshing to read your honesty about how El Matador helped put you in a better state of mind after visiting it and experiencing its beauty and natural calming effects. Your photos are absolutely stunning and they do a wonderful job of visually expressing the joy and mental clarity you received from visiting such a beautiful beach. I thought it was interesting how you met several women during your time at the beach and your descriptions of how you met them were funny yet they were also meaningful interactions you had despite the fact that you were a newcomer to El Matador. It’s great that your beach visit went so well!

    • marcella.wilroy770 says:


      It honestly was such a weird experience, in the best way. I’m glad that I met those people because people like that really keep the spirit of that beach alive, at least in my eyes. If you liked the photos and you’ve never been to El Matador, it’s even prettier in person. You simply must go! Hopefully you’ll encounter some of the meaningful beauty that awaits!

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