Essential Santa Monica Attractions Every Tourist Must See

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While Santa Monica is technically part of Los Angeles, the area has its own California charm. From the beach to the renowned pier, there are plenty of things to do during your visit.

If you’re making your way to or through this part of town, don’t miss out on these Santa Monica events and attractions every tourist should see!

Santa Monica Beach

A major staple of any popular coastal city will be the beach. Although Santa Monica can occasionally get crowded, the large beach runs the length of Santa Monica itself, leaving plenty of room for swimming and laying out under the sun.

Along the beach you’ll find volleyball nets, golden sand, and a great view of the pier.

Santa Monica Pier

Some of the most notable Santa Monica events happen at the pier. It boasts an iconic Ferris Wheel, a small aquarium, as well as some fairground games. If you get hungry, there are plenty of dining options ranging from a burger at Johnny Rocket’s to some seafood at Bubba Gump Shrimp.

After you eat, you can sit back and enjoy remarkable views of Malibu and the South Bay. The pier often plays host to many local artists playing live music and other performances in the evening as well.

Palisades Park

Between the beach and Ocean Avenue, you’ll find Palisades Park. A walk down the path will lead you past palm trees, eucalyptus plants, and stunning views of the ocean and surrounding beaches.

The park runs along the entire coast of Santa Monica Pier and offers many locations for photo ops. If you’re in the area and feeling artsy, be sure to check out Camera Obscura for a neat experience.

The Original Muscle Beach

Although the more commonly known Muscle Beach resides in Venice, the Original Muscle Beach was started in Santa Monica. There you’ll find a handful of exercise equipment including pull-up bars, parallel bars, and gymnast rings.

There are plenty of regulars who work out there daily, so you’ll likely need to share. But it’s a great place for a quick workout if you need to get your blood pumping. There aren’t many gyms that have an ocean view during your exercise.

Third Street Promenade

If you’re looking to do some shopping, then take a walk down Third Street Promenade. With popular shops like Adidas, Anthropologie, and Gap, there is a place for just about everyone to stop and take a look.

The Wednesday morning farmer’s market along Third Street is also well worth a visit. This is where many of the local restaurants go for their produce and other necessities for their menus.

Other Santa Monica Events and Things to Do

If you’re looking for more to do during your visit to Santa Monica, get more information on our blog and be sure to come and visit us at Big Dean’s Ocean Front Cafe for great food, beer, wine, music, and more.

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