Whilst in Los Angeles we had a wonderful 24 hours in the beach town of Santa Monica. If there's no traffic then it's only about 25 minutes from Hollywood to Santa Monica (there's always traffic in LA though). This is why we booked a hotel & spent a little bit longer there than just a day trip.
We stayed at Le Meridian which was a lovely, modern hotel. We parked the car, checked in and set off to explore. The last time we went to Santa Monica was a few years previously where we only stopped off for a couple of hours whilst driving from Pismo Beach to Orange County.
Santa Monica Pier
Along the beach is a boardwalk full of people walking, running, cycling, skating. It’s certainly a healthy and active place. We visited the original Muscle Beach & took some photos for my other business Voltage Sport. After hanging out at Muscle Beach we went to the world-famous Santa Monica pier!
The sun was shining so we stopped at Restaurant Al Mare for lunch & sat outside. We shared some prawns and calamari followed by pasta and beer as we sat watched the world go by from the balcony.
The pier itself was fairly busy, it’s full of entertainers, restaurants and has a mini theme park! The iconic American road Route 66 ends on the pier too.
We’d had a hectic few days before arriving at Santa Monica so we went back to the hotel for a couple of hours of pool time before heading out for the evening.
A Night in Santa Monica
We did some research on where to eat when you are somewhere for just a short space of time we wanted to get it right! We settled on Mercado a modern Mexican restaurant at the 3rd Avenue Promenade. The food was great and this area of Santa Monica is full of shops so it would be great throughout the day. After our meal, we went for cocktails in the Copa d’Oro a lovely little lounge bar.
We then walked along the beachfront in search of another bar. We found a place called The Bungalow which is on the grounds of the Fairmont Miramar. It is in fact, a bungalow with a large outside garden area and lots of rooms inside. It was like being at a house party! Despite it being a Monday night it was really busy in The Bungalow. We had a fun night – Sometimes those which are unplanned are the best!
We had a fantastic time in Santa Monica and would love to go back again soon!
About the Author:
Caroline Towers is the founder of Dreamers who Travel. When not travelling, she is researching & dreaming of the next trip!