Santa Monica Pier

Santa Monica Pier

Santa Monica Pier

If you’re looking to get the most out of your trip to the Santa Monica Pier, there are lots of ways to make the most of this beloved LA landmark. Whether you’re looking for fun rides, delicious food, exciting concerts, or stunning views, there’s something here for everyone.

Ride the Ferris Wheel at Pacific Park

This iconic California landmark is one of the most well-known rides at the Santa Monica pier amusement park, also known as Pacific Park. It can be seen from miles away and offers a breathtaking view of LA’s skyline. You can explore all of Pacific Park’s games and rides like bumper cars or an arcade at Fun Zone. Food is available for purchase, so you don’t have to leave hungry. The area around Pacific Park has picnic tables and benches where you can sit down and enjoy your meal while taking in all that beauty that only Southern California has to offer. The rides are open during daytime hours which means it’s prime time for those who want to take in those amazing beach sunsets!

Walk Along The Boardwalk

The Santa Monica Pier is one of those rare spots that actually feels like it’s from another time. It’s been around since 1909, so it has a lot of history and nostalgia behind it. People come here all year round, but if you come during the summertime you will see people sunbathing on beach chairs, playing volleyball and other games near the water, or just simply going for a walk.  Many restaurants and shops line up right next to the Boardwalk too, making it easy for you to grab food or souvenirs as you go. This is also one of the best places to catch the sunset. With a clear view of the Pacific Ocean, you won’t be disappointed! You can also enjoy walking on the Boardwalk while listening to live music or seeing classic street performers. Also, don’t forget to head back at night because this is where some of the most exciting events take place, such as concerts and fireworks shows!

Santa Monica Restaurants by the Beach

Whether you’re out with friends or visiting family, there’s no denying that dining out is an integral part of enjoying your trip to LA. The city has long been famous for its eclectic mix of cuisines and eateries from every corner of the globe, so it comes as no surprise that there are lots of amazing restaurants right on the beach. Some of the most well-known and well-loved ones are the Water Grill, Rusty’s Surf Ranch, Blue Plate Oysterette and the BOA Steakhouse Santa Monica. If Mexican food is more up your street, head to Blue Plate Taco – where they serve up delicious seafood alongside tasty tacos. Also, be aware before you dine, Santa Monica pier restaurants are always packed – even on weekdays, it can get busy. Always try to make sure you book ahead if possible. If there isn’t space inside, then don’t be afraid to try eating outside.

Santa Monica Pier Free Concerts

One of our favorite free perks that come with visiting Santa Monica is catching a show at one of their many beachfront concert series. Free concerts usually take place every Wednesday and Friday from 5:30-7:30pm on most summer nights (with some exceptions). The lineup varies from week to week, but we highly recommend checking in before you head out. The exact venue also changes; one night it might be directly in front of Muscle Beach, another it might be upon Sidewalk Café’s deck. Regardless, these shows are always packed so if you want to snag an ideal spot arrive early. There are no set genres for the shows—one day they’ll feature folk music, next up will be an electronic dance party. Sometimes there’s a comedy act or maybe even a marching band. Many famous artists have even taken the stage here including Wyclef Jean, Youngblood Hawke, Black Violin, and Bonobo just to name a few. These free concerts are an eclectic mix that could eventually turn into one of your family’s favorite beachside traditions.

Bring Your Dog to Herb Katz Dog Park

While not directly on the pier, Herb Katz Dog Park is located a couple of blocks away and is easily accessible. Even though in California you can go almost anywhere with your dog, there are plenty off-leash areas that make it easy on your dog. This dog park has separate areas for big dogs and little dogs, so you can ensure your dog’s safety no matter their size. The water fountains inside are a great place for your pup to cool off in summer heat. There are also several green spaces throughout that are perfect for humans who need some downtime.  Your pup will enjoy the other four-legged friends they’ll meet there; it’s a good idea to bring along treats or toys (such as Kong rubber balls) to make new friends. Many of the locals frequent these parks during work breaks to hang out with their furry loved ones which makes it a safe spot for you too. If you are new to the area or just visiting, you can stop by and take advantage of this awesome outdoor area for you and your pooch.

Shopping near Santa Monica Pier

One of the most exciting things to do by Santa Monica pier is shopping. You can find great deals on clothing, jewelry, and accessories with plenty of sales during the holiday season. You can also go shopping in some unique stores near Santa Monica pier that offer diverse wares like hard-to-find chocolates or rare wines. Some of the most popular stores around are Ocean Outfitters, Wilshire Surf, and Bullocks Wilshire.

Whether you’re looking for souvenirs or new outfits, shopping near Santa Monica pier is a must for visitors and locals alike. With a variety of stores in such close proximity, you can easily shop until you drop without having to spend much money or time. You can stop by any day of the week; just remember that many stores are closed on Mondays. You won’t have a problem finding parking as there are several lots within walking distance. Parking costs about $15 per hour but varies according to location and days/hours that each lot is open. it’s important to find out exactly where your desired store is located before parking, so you don’t waste valuable shopping time walking from lot to lot.

Rent Bikes and Ride Around

Bike riders are a common sight along The Strand, which runs parallel to Ocean Front Walk. Take advantage of their sweat equity and rent a bike from one of many shops in and around Ocean Front Walk. The Santa Monica Bicycle Coalition offers day-use rental for as little as $6 per hour or $30 per day. Remember that helmets are required by law, so you’ll have to bring your own. Don’t be surprised if they ask to check it before letting you on a bike. Also, be warned, there is an ordinance against wearing flip flops while riding; keep some sneakers with you while riding bikes on Santa Monica beach.  If renting isn’t your thing, a number of companies (Bike & Roll, Banana Bike Rental) offer guided tours around town where you can hop on and off when you please for about $40-$80 per person. This gives you a chance to get out and see more without having to worry about parking.

Check out the Beachfront Ice Rink

When you think of Southern California, beach weather and ice may not be what immediately comes to mind, but that’s exactly what you’ll find right along the shoreline of Santa Monica. In operation since 1957, The Beachfront Ice Rink is just one of many attractions that families love and make it an annual tradition. Glide around on ice skates as you take in views of the beautiful Pacific Ocean while enjoying a cup of hot chocolate or warm cocoa by an open fire after your skate. The Ice Rink also hosts outdoor holiday events with everything from elves sliding on handcrafted wooden toys and complimentary photos with Santa Claus to Christmas carols sung by neighborhood children; it’s truly a memorable experience for all ages. Be sure to check their website often, as they frequently update their schedule with free events including movies under the stars and Skate & Sliderama. They also offer weekly family skating lessons that are sure to delight both first-time ice skaters and those more familiar with blades.

The Santa Monica Pier is a great escape for both locals and tourists alike. For locals, it’s an easy day trip that can help you recharge after a long week of work. And for tourists, it’s a perfect way to get acquainted with LA. The pier boasts restaurants, arcade games, and stunning views of Los Angeles are all worth checking out. Whether or not you have time to make it down there, we hope we inspired some wanderlust in you.

Check out the Avelo Route Map for more information on Flights to Los Angeles / Hollywood Burbank, CA.