Looking for a great destination for your next family vacation? Look no further. Santa Monica has so many wonderful activities for visitors of all ages that you and your family may never want to leave.

Check out these Santa Monica pier events and attractions and start planning your visit today.

Santa Monica Pier Aquarium

Do you have a budding marine scientist in your family? The Santa Monica Pier Aquarium should absolutely be your first stop! This entertaining and educational attraction will teach you about over 100 species of sea creatures.

There are plenty of hands-on exhibits that will delight young and old visitors, and you can even lend a hand when it comes time to feed the sea stars! It’s also an inexpensive way to spend the afternoon, as guests age 12 and under get in for free, and those 13+ pay only $5 admission.

Go Fish!

Want to get even closer to perch, mackerel, white sea bass, leopard sharks, tiger sharks, and stingrays? Go fishing for them! You don’t need a license to fish from any public pier in California.

There are even fishing rods available for rent at Pier Bait and Tackle. This destination also bills itself as the last-stop shop on historic Route 66.

Ride the Pacific Wheel

Santa Monica is home to the world’s only solar-powered Ferris wheel, the Pacific Wheel, and other exhilarating rides at Pacific Park.

Soar above the sea on the 55-foot rollercoaster or take a turn on the Ferris wheel. You’ll be amazed at the views. Pacific Park, which consistently wins awards for California’s best amusement park, also offers bumper cars, arcade games, and a variety of sweet and savory treats.

Annenberg Community Beach House

One fantastic way to keep the whole family amused for hours is by heading to Annenberg Community Beach House. This attraction is unique not only in the variety of activities it offers but because there’s no membership required and admission to everything (except the pool) is free!

Little ones can cool off in the splash pad, run wild on the playground, or build sand castles on the beachfront. Mom and Dad can take in some culture at the art gallery, play volleyball, practice yoga — or just relax in a lounge chair and enjoy the free wi-fi.

Third Street Promenade

All beached-out? That’s OK. This area has much more to offer than just the sand, sea, and Santa Monica pier events. Take a morning or afternoon to explore the Third Street Promenade.

This pedestrian shopping and entertainment center is great for those who want to shop ’til they drop, and equally fun for those who simply want to take in the antics of the many talented street performers.

After Exploring Santa Monica Pier Events

All of this fun and excitement is bound to leave you hungry and thirsty. May we suggest a trip to Big Dean’s Oceanfront Cafe?

It’s perfect for the whole family, with a wide variety of seafood, sandwiches, tacos, salads, wings, and much more.

No excursion to the beach is complete without a trip to Big Dean’s — and it’s a great way to catch your breath and refuel before heading out for another round of Santa Monica pier events!

What Santa Monica attractions do you think are must-see? Let us know in the comments!

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