Facts • Map of Los Angeles • Introduction • Santa Monica Pier • Hotels in Santa Monica • Restaurants in Santa Monica • Shopping in Santa Monica • Venice • Malibu • Restaurants in Malibu • Shopping in Malibu
- Population Santa Monica: 92 306 (2017)
- California is called for: The Golden State
- Time zone: Pacific Standard Time
- Visa? Yes, ESTA.
- Temperature: Around 20 Celsius during the winter months, around 30 Celsius during summer. Occasional showers between November and April.
- Earth quakes: California is located on two of the world’s largest tectonic plates which means that it is one of the world’s most seimologically active regions. Every year, more than 10 000 minor earth quakes occur here. If you are interested you can keep track of the earth quakes via Earthquake Track.
Map of Los Angeles
We stayed four days in Santa Monica and the number of days was quite sufficient.
Santa Monica is great as a starting point if you are planning to make excursions in the vicinity. Santa Monica is cosy and easily accessible by car.
Also, the legendary highway Route 66, which starts in Chicaco, ends in Santa Monica.
If you have already done the Highway 1, you should put Route 66 on your bucket list.
Santa Monica State Beach
Santa Monica Pier is full of restaurants (not all of them are great), a Ferris Wheel and a merry-go-round.
The paved road takes you all the way to Venice, preferably riding a bike or inlines.
More on Venice down below.
Santa Monica State Beach is a great place for a workout so bring your training clothes. And – if you are looking for a killer leg workout head for Santa Monica Stairs (699 Adelaide Dr, Santa Monica, CA 90402) and run the stairs up and down a few times. You might spend the next day in bed but that is another story.
Hotels in Santa Monica
- Shutters on the beach – is a rather big hotel but still really beautiful in a classical way. You might also want to visit Shutters just for breakfast, lunch or dinner.
- The Shore Hotel – modern and minimalistic. We stayed here and have actually nothing to complain about, even though it would have been nice if the hotel had had a restaurant.
- Vice Roy Santa Monica
- The Georgian Hotel – a charming hotel with a stellar location.
Restaurants in Santa Monica
- Groundwork is a chain serving organic coffee in several locations in Santa Monica.
- Ruby’s Café – an Australian restaurant with a cool vibe and great food.
- Penthouse på Huntley Hotel – for brunch or drinks and for THE view over Santa Monica.
- Blue Plate Taco for a casual evening.
- Elephanté – how is it possible that spaghetti with garlic and olive oil can be so delicious? Well, it is, and don’t forget to make a reservation if you don’t want to miss all the Italian mouthwatering dishes.
Shopping in Santa Monica
There are lots of shops on the Third Street Promenade, and at the bottom of the promenade you will find the luxury mall Santa Monica Place.
Venice is a must if you are in Los Angeles or in Santa Monica and, also, you have to either rent a bike or a pair of inlines and drive all the way down to Venice.
Take your time, stay a moment to catch some solar power, or crab a coffee somewhere nice, admire the villas by the beach, check out the weirdos and finally, have lunch at Rose Café.
If you have time, hit the shops at the Abbott Kinney Boulevard and stroll along the canals after.
Restaurants in Venice
- Gjelina is a super nice place serving delicious pizza and other stuff.
- Gjusta is the perfect place to have breakfast or lunch at.
- Rose Café – because everything is just so tasty and good.
- High Rooftop Lounge at the Hotel Erwin.
Malibu is a small and charming town with its approximately 12 000 inhabitants, close to Santa Monica.
Visit Carbon Beach – aka the Billionaire’s Beach. The view is spectacular: You have the mountains on the one side and the ocean on the other, and all those mega villas owned by all the mega super stars like the icing of the cake in front of you.
The beaches are open for public in California but the residents here are working hard to keep their beach private. You will have access to the Carbon Beach through three entrances. They are hard to find since the houses stand so close together.
Restaurants in Malibu
- Paradise Cove Beach Cafe – great restaurant and the beach is nice, too.
- Malibu Farm – this lunch spot is on a pier and serves fresh and locally produced organic food.
- Nobu Malibu – where else?