One of the first things on our to-do list while in Los Angeles was to visit the beaches and being a sunny Saturday afternoon, we thought we would head to Santa Monica for the day. Unfortunately for us, the rest of greater Los Angeles seemed to have the same idea and Santa Monica was absolutely crazy!
But instead of turning around and heading back onto the highway to Los Angeles, we braved the crowds and were determined to have an enjoyable day. So we parked the car in one of the nearby parking structures and walked down to the beach.
Santa Monica Beach
The main attraction at Santa Monica beach is the world-famous Santa Monica pier which includes the Pacific Park amusement park. It attracts millions of visitors each year and features 12 rides, midway games and an assortment of food and shopping options.
The star attraction at Pacific Park is the Pacific Wheel, the world’s only solar-powered Ferris Wheel. Unfortunately we didn’t get to ride on it but for those who are interested, the cost is $5 per ride. If you can afford it, then we’re sure it would be a great experience with fantastic views of the city and out to the Pacific Ocean.
Rather than pay to go on the rides at Pacific Park, we opted to venture to the nearby Santa Monica Muscle Beach – “The Birthplace of the Physical Fitness Boom of the Twentieth Century”. We tried our hands at the rings, the parallel bars and even completed a chin-up or two. People who are serious about fitness would love this place – the two of us were just there for a bit of fun though.
After we were done with our mini-routine, we simply watched some amazingly fit people climbing high ropes in a matter of seconds and swinging on the rings like they were members of the ape family. Maybe one day we’ll be like that?
Or perhaps not?
Third Street Promenade
The other famous tourist destination in Santa Monica is the Third Street Promenade, a vibrant shopping district that is full of action. If you’re into shopping, this is one of the places in Los Angeles you want to go with a variety of shops to cater for all tastes. There’s also plenty of fabulous dining options on the Promenade for the foodies among us.
One of the things that you must do while strolling along Third Street Promenade is watch the engaging street performers (and tip them if they entertain you!). These performers have some serious talent and we could’ve watched them all day!
We only had a small taste of Santa Monica but it was enough to prove that it deserves its title as one of the must-see destinations when in Los Angeles.
We’re currently road tripping through California thanks to the generous help of Fox Rent A Car.