From San Pedro to Malibu, here are the nicest beaches in Los Angeles. Includes short tourist perspectives.
There’s no denying that Los Angeles has some of the best beaches in the world. It can be hard to decide which one to visit with so many options to choose from.
Luckily, we’ve put together a list of some of the best beaches in LA, so you can pick the perfect one for your needs.
Whether you’re looking for a place to relax and soak up the sun, or you want to get active by surfing or swimming, there’s a beach in LA that’s perfect for you. Check out our list of the best beaches in LA below.
Table of Contents
VIDEO – LA Beaches
Santa Monica Beach
When people think of LA beaches, they think about Santa Monica Beach.
However, Santa Monica is another city!
“I had no idea,” admits Kyle, a tourist from Tennessee. “I thought it was a neighborhood of LA. It’s really another city?”
This classic beach is perfect for those who want to experience all that LA has to offer. From people-watching to sunbathing, there’s something for everyone at Santa Monica Beach.
The beach is known for its commitment to public access, and it features a variety of dining, shopping, and recreation options.
Santa Monica Pier, which was constructed in 1909, is a popular destination for visitors. The pier includes a variety of shops and restaurants, as well as an amusement park and an aquarium.
Visitors can also enjoy a variety of water sports at Santa Monica Beach, including swimming, surfing, and kayaking.
Now, this is a beach in the city of Los Angeles, and Venice Beach is super awesome.
If you’re looking for a more laid-back beach experience, Venice Beach is the perfect spot.
With its eclectic atmosphere and beautiful setting, it’s no wonder that Venice Beach is one of LA’s most popular beaches.
Get your most colorful outfit and head on out into the sun.
“I couldn’t believe my eyes,” says Gina, who’s visiting from Iowa. “It’s one thing when you see it online, but the reality is totally different,” she adds. “This place is awesome!”
Yes, Gina, we agree!
Will Rogers Beach
Will Rogers State Beach is one of the most popular state parks in Los Angeles.
Located in Pacific Palisades, the park stretches for more than two miles on the bluffs above the Pacific Ocean.
“It’s ‘Ginger Rogers’ to me,” says Blake, a visitor from Oregon, referring to the beach’s popular gay section.
The beach offers stunning views of the coastline and is a great place to take a walk, go for a run, or just relax and take in the beauty of nature.
There are also several beach volleyball courts available for use, as well as a playground and picnic tables.
The park is open year-round, and lifeguards are on duty during the summer months.
Parking is available for a fee.
Malibu has tons of beaches! Even though it’s a little bit of a drive for most travelers, we think it’s worth the trip!
1. Zuma Beach
Malibu’s most famous beach is Zuma Beach, a popular spot for Angelenos to enjoy the sun and waves.
The gentle slope of the sand and shallow water make it ideal for swimming, wading and bodysurfing.
You can find free parking on the street or paid parking in one of the lots.
Malibu is also known for its many celebrities that have homes in the area. Whether you’re looking to relax on the beach, take a hike, or people-watch, Malibu is the perfect place to do it.
2. Lagoon Beach
Malibu Lagoon State Beach is another one. This beach is perfect for those who want to escape the hustle and bustle of the city.
With its serene setting and stunning views, Malibu Lagoon State Beach is the perfect place to relax and recharge.
3. Coral Beach
Another one of Malibu’s fantastic beaches. Coral State Beach is one of the most beautiful and secluded beaches in the Los Angeles area.
It’s perfect for a relaxing day by the ocean. There’s plenty of sand to spread out on, and the waves are gentle enough for swimming.
4. Little Dume Beach
Little Dume Beach is a beautiful, sandy beach located in Malibu.
Visitors can enjoy stunning views of the Pacific Ocean while relaxing on the beach.
There are also plenty of opportunities for swimming, surfing, and sunbathing.
Malibu has more beaches, but we don’t have the space to talk about all of them.
Playa Del Rey Beach
Playa del Rey (it means “King’s Beach” in Spanish) is an affluent beachfront neighborhood on the Westside of Los Angeles.
This beach sits on the Santa Monica Bay. The beach was a popular recreation destination in the 1920s and 1930s.
The area is home to the Ballona Wetlands, a coastal wetland that serves as a wildlife refuge and protects endangered species.
It is also home to the Dockweiler State Beach, a beach that spans 3 miles (4.8 km) of coastline and features a long boardwalk.
Playa del Rey is surrounded by the neighborhoods of Venice.
El Segundo Beach
El Segundo Beach is a beach known for its fire pits, which makes it a great place to visit after sunset.
There’s a little sign telling you it was dedicated in 2000.
Additionally, El Segundo is home to the Los Angeles Times, Los Angeles Air Force Base, and dozens of Fortune 500 companies.
As such, the beach is a popular spot for both locals and tourists alike, including business people.
If you’re looking for a relaxing day by the water, be sure to check out El Segundo Beach!
Bruce’s Beach is a hidden gem in the city of LA.
First of all, its story is so unique. In late 2021, California’s governor apologized for how the city seized the first west coast resort for Black people.
Finally, after 100 years, the descendants of Willa and Charles Bruce got the land back.
“Of course, I came for the history,” says Serenity, an African-American woman from Georgia. “Can you imagine how rich that family would’ve been if they didn’t steal their land?”
Yeah, Serenity, it totally blows.
It’s a great place to go for a swim, sunbathe, or just relax on the beach. The best part is that it’s not too crowded, so you can really enjoy the peace and quiet.
Plus, extraordinary history!
Manhattan Beach is a coastal city in Los Angeles County, California, United States.
This beach is in the South Bay region of the Greater Los Angeles Area.
“The moment I heard that ‘The Mandalorian’ is filmed here, I had to come,” says Christine, who traveled from Utah.
Yeah, this Disney+ show has die-hard fans!
The city was founded in 1909 by a group of citizens who wanted to create a seaside resort town.
They succeeded in creating a beautiful and affluent community with wide beaches.
Hermosa Beach is one of the many incredible beaches in Los Angeles. It’s well known for its surfing and stunningly beautiful coastline.
This is a tiny town of just fifteen blocks, but it totally makes it up for being super beautiful.
Visitors can enjoy plenty of activities like sunbathing, swimming, fishing, and boating.
The pier is also a popular spot for people-watching and enjoying the incredible views.
Redondo Beach is a beautiful place to visit, with its sandy beaches and stunning ocean views. It’s also a great place to take a walk or go for a swim.
“I love this pier,” says Scott, a traveler from Arizona who can’t stop talking about how beautiful the horseshoe-shaped pier is!
There are plenty of restaurants and shops to keep you busy, and the sunsets are simply gorgeous.
If you’re looking for a relaxing beach vacation, Redondo Beach is the place for you.
Royal Palms Beach
Royal Palms Beach is a great place to relax and enjoy the beautiful California weather.
“I just love the idea of going into the water and upon the rocks,” says Karen, who visits from nearby San Diego.
This beach is located in the Los Angeles neighborhood of San Pedro.
It offers stunning views of the Pacific Ocean, tends to be quiet, and has, as Karen pointed out, cool things to do!
Visitors can enjoy plenty of activities such as swimming, sunbathing, fishing, and picnicking.
White Point Beach
Just on the other side of Royal Palms beach, White Point Beach is another excellent place to enjoy the sun and the water.
It’s very popular with two types of people. If you love scuba diving, you will love it at its high tide.
However, those into tide pooling will absolutely go crazy for it at low tide.
Last but not least is Cabrillo Beach.
This is another beautiful beach in LA’s San Pedro neighborhood.
It gets its name from Juan Rodríguez Cabrillo, who was the Portuguese explorer that first sailed up the California coast back in the day.
It was created in the mid-1920s and has, like a lot of beaches in LA, its own lifeguards, lighthouse, and tons of lovers that flock to it daily.
So, there you have it! These are just a few of the nice best beaches in Los Angeles.
No matter what your preference, there’s sure to be a beach in the area to make your day. So, grab your swimsuit and let’s go to the beach!
AJ Paris is a travel photographer based in New York. He is the editor of Caravanzers.
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