Santa Monica offers the perfect antidote to Los Angeles. Right next door, it’s the ultimate retreat where beach vibes, great food and fine dining merge to offer an escape that’s well and truly a holiday of its own. Here are 7 reasons why we love Santa Monica.
It’s right on Los Angeles’ doorstep
The sunny shores of Santa Monica are just an easy 13 kilometres from LAX airport – one of the busiest airports in the United States. Easy transport connections to Los Angeles via the metro line make it also to do trips into the big city lights to see the sights while keeping a local beachfront base.
The famous Santa Monica Pier
No trip to Santa Monica is complete without going to the Santa Monica Pier, with its iconic giant Ferris wheel soaring high above the sea waters. Wander and soak up the amusement park atmosphere, drop into the aquarium and be sure to pick up some fairy floss and an old fashioned ice cream soda while you’re there.
It’s great for biking
With some great paths in the area, Santa Monica is the perfect spot for a breezy bike ride. Beachfront paths wind along the shoreline, including a gorgeous stretch from the Marina north to Sunset which offers 13km of pristine views – easily a riding highlight. Pick up your wheels from the Santa Monica Bike Centre.
The beautiful beach vibes
There are beautiful beaches galore in and around Santa Monica. Sun, sand and sea bliss is all yours to enjoy. The classic stretch of Santa Monica Beach is full of atmosphere and amenities – the shores south of the pier are the original Muscle Beach. Sorrento Beach and Will Rogers State Beach are also wonderful.
Public art and galleries
There’s a diverse and vibrant arts scene to be found in Santa Monica. In the gallery space, there are small boutique galleries all the way up to nationally acclaimed galleries to peruse. But just a wander around the area can be rewarding, with interesting sculptures and murals to be found.
Great foodie finds
The restaurant scene here is renowned for being foodie heaven, so expect strong competition for every meal from breakfast to lunch. The Santa Monica Farmers Market is also a must – brimming with fresh local produce and artisanal goods and infused with a relaxed local feel that’s welcoming for a morning stroll.
With so many good beachfront locales and trendy neighbourhoods, there’s some amazing accommodation options to match. From beach clubs to boutique hotels and big name favourites, there’s sure to be a spot to meet and far exceed your expectations.