Santa Monica – you were amazing!

Visit Santa Monica?

…yes please, I don’t mind if I do!  When presented with an opportunity to visit a place not normally on our radar, we leapt at the chance.  Santa Monica here we come.

Santa Monica Boulevard
Santa Monica Boulevard

A short break

Just four days – a mere snapshot in time – Santa Monica, a place of iconic signs, dreams and sunshine.  And we crammed it all in.  On a visit to family in New Jersey, USA we organised an internal flight from Newark EWR to Los Angeles LAX, it took five and a half hours but it was worth it.  An economy flight with United Airlines got us there.  We arrived in LA at 1.30pm  and hit the ground running.

The climate is warm and sunny almost all the time.   It is difficult not to fall in love with this place

Sunshade, palm trees and blue skies in Santa Monica

Use the bus

The bags were stashed in the hotel lobby and we caught the Big Blue Bus https://www.bigbluebus.com/ down ‘Santa Monica Boulevard’.  Now you’ve heard that name you know you really want to sing the Sheryl Crow song:

‘All I wanna do is have some fun
I got a feelin’ I’m not the only one
All I wanna do is have some fun
Until the sun comes up over Santa Monica Boulevard’

Ocean Park Beach, Santa Monica
Ocean Park Beach

We arrived at the beach on Ocean Avenue.  Breathtaking views of the Pacific Ocean and shoreline – and life on the beach.  A couple of miles walk in the glorious sunshine and it’s time to turn around.  I know it’s not really appropriate but we had heard that the ‘British Pub’ was a good place to go http://www.yeoldekingshead.com/ So we did!  The Olde Kings Head was the perfect place to go for great value for money.  Good quality food and drink, especially during ‘happy hour’. We returned a further couple of times for the Californian wine.

Pacific Park Pier

Pacific Park Pier is the end of Route 66.  A constant stream of visitors take selfies on this spot.  Here too are souvenirs and local delicacies such as funnel cake and shrimp.  There is all the fun of the fair with the rollercoaster and ‘ferris’ wheel too.  Live music,  buskers, fishing and ‘illusionists’ add the addictive vibrancy and colour.

Route 66, Santa Monica
The end of Route 66 is on Pier Park, Santa Monica

Hooray for Hollywood!

Hollywood sightseeing tours run from the Pier too.  All those iconic sites and signs can be bagged in half a day.  Worth it too, it’s the only way to tick everything off in a such a short period of time.

Walk of fame, Hollywood
Avenue of the stars

At the end of the day

There is no finer way to end the day than watch the sun go down over Santa Monica Pier.  California Dreamin’ will keep me warm though the British Winter.

 

Santa Monica Sunset
The sun sets over Pier Park, Santa Monica, Los Angeles

Thank you Santa Monica, you really were amazing.

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