Santa Monica beaches are unforgettable. But there are plenty of other reasons to visit this beachside city, any month of the year, too!
If you're looking for local tips on where to stay, play, shop, or surf - you've come to the right place! We're delighted to share tips on the very best things to see and do in this vibrant California beach city we've called home since 2012.
This site is provides you with all the information you'll need to plan a visit to Santa Monica; from choosing hotels and restaurants, and deciding which things to do, to planning attractions to visit, and local events to check out during your stay.
Visiting Santa Monica Beaches
If your travel to Santa Monica is by air, Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) is the most accessible place to arrive. While Santa Monica does have a small airport, it is primarily used for small, private planes only.
This makes LAX the most accessible airport to arrive at from Europe and other international destinations. You'll find the best prices and flight options through this hub. There are at least 36 nonstop flights to Santa Monica via LAX from Europe daily. Get more information on visiting Santa Monica.
All About Santa Monica Hotels: From Don't-Ask Expensive to Shoestring Budget Friendly
Cheap hotels? You've probably heard about the scary prices hotels in Santa Monica charge. If you're on a limited budget, you may feel like you'll be left out in the cold (or, instead, the warmth) in Santa Monica.
While Santa Monica is famous for its expensive beach hotels with ocean view rooms, he truth is that there are cheap hotels here too - and some are even steps from the beach. And many have ocean view rooms as well.
Things to Do
Santa Monica activities include more than just laying in the hot sun with a refreshing drink and devouring fish tacos though that is a lovely place to start and one of my favorite ways to spend the day.
Besides lounging on Santa Monica State beach, there is of course that other famous attraction you won't want to miss - the iconic Santa Monica Pier and ferris wheel. And the Santa Monica Pier Aquarium.
You can also get the blood flowing with a beach bike ride south to Venice beach, swimming, surfing, parasailing, paddle surfing, playing basketball or tennis ... the list goes on and on. There's even the original Muscle Beach (the Muscle Beach to the south in Venice Beach) came after our city's original, outdoor, gymnastics-based equipment workout area.
In short: There are plenty of activities to choose from that will keep even the most active of bodies busy.
Nightlife: Where to Go When the Stars are Out
Nightlife here is more laid-back than the scene you'll find in downtown Los Angeles, Hollywood, or West Hollywood. And frankly, we like it that way.
We keep it real here (for the most part), and our nightlife reflects that. Sure, you'll still have to queue-up occasionally - after all, is there anywhere worth going to that isn't going to attract a good crowd? Whether you're looking for a rooftop bar, live music, a dance club, or just a cool place to hang out and grab a drink - nightlife in Santa Monica delivers.
Our very first impression, the beaches, is still what defines our city. Here is just one example...