This summer there’s nothing more in than access to wide open spaces outdoors. With 3.5 miles of glistening coastline and 280 days of sunshine to match, Santa Monica offers an abundance of outdoor spaces that create the perfect backdrop for a day of fresh air and sea breezes.
Better yet, there’s no need for a car to get around our beachside city. A walkable 8.3 square-miles, Santa Monica also has more than 100 miles of bike lanes, making it easy to explore the compact urban landscape on foot or by bike.
Read on for a list of our favorite ways to enjoy Santa Monica’s outdoor spaces.
Sink into the Sand at Santa Monica State Beach
The best part of Santa Monica is the beach! Our stretch of beach is 3.5-miles in length, providing ample space for outdoor fun. Los Angeles County beaches, including our own, are open for the following activities:
- Individual or family ocean activities (such as surfing, swimming, kayaking, paddleboarding and body surfing)
- Individual or family active recreation & exercise (such as walking, running and using the beach bike path)
- Sunbathing, sitting and lying on sand
- Chairs, canopies or coolers
Insider’s tip: the area of the beach closest to the Santa Monica Pier tends to see the most visitors. If you’re looking for some space head north past the Annenberg Community Beach House. This stretch of the beach generally receives less visitors.
Paddle out into the Pacific Ocean
Take a refreshing dip in the Pacific Ocean to soak your worries away. With a gentle year-round break, Santa Monica is the perfect destination for beginning surfers and also provides friendly ocean access for standup paddleboarders and kayakers.
Virginia Avenue Park
One of Santa Monica’s largest parks is Virginia Avenue Park. Located along Pico Boulevard, a vibrant corridor with locally-owned shops and restaurants, this 9.5-acre space offers a large lawn area with a walking path.
Off the beaten path in Santa Monica’s Ocean Park neighborhood is another large outdoor space. Airport Park offers 4-acres of outdoor spaces including an off-leash dog area, walking loop and picnic tables.
Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area
Just outside the city-limits of Santa Monica find a plethora of hiking trails in the Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area. With more than 500-miles of trails space abounds in this stunning natural area. Get a different perspective on Santa Monica as you climb to vistas that offer uninterrupted views of our beaches and landmarks, including the Santa Monica Pier.
If now is not the right time for you and your loved ones to visit Santa Monica there are still ways to enjoy our beachside city virtually.
Catch a view of our world-famous sunsets and the Santa Monica Pier from the comfort of your living room with the live Santa Monica Beach Cam. Count seagulls, watch sunset in real time and listen to the sounds of the Pacific Ocean crash against our sand for a little indoor zen.
- Santa Monica Pier Aerial
- Santa Monica Pier Sign
- Street Art – Corner of Love by Ruben Rojas
- Street Art Inspire – Inspire by Marcel “SEL” Blanco