1. Leo Carillo, 2. El Matador, 3. Zuma, 4. Santa Monica, 5. Venice Beach, 6. Manhattan Beach, 7. Abalone Cove Shoreline Park, 8. Hermosa Beach, 9. Malaga Cove, 10. Crystal Cove State Beach. Southern California was an American fantasy vacation destination for one reason long before the Beach Boys shouted the state's and its girls' praises: the beach. LA continues to be a legendary coastal hotspot with miles of expansive, sandy beaches bordered by ragged, towering cliffs and soft, rolling surf that is ideal for novices but can get large enough to energize even experienced surfers. The top beaches in and surrounding the city of Angels are listed below.
- Leo Carillo
- El Matador
- Santa Monica
- Venice Beach
- Manhattan Beach
- Abalone Cove Shoreline Park
- Hermosa Beach
- Malaga Cove
- Crystal Cove State Beach
Leo Carillo, one of the top Beaches in Los Angeles, a summer camp-style beach with enough stimulating tide pools, cliff caves, nature paths, wonderful swimming, and surfing, is a favorite among families and is located in the almost mythical Malibu. Although it can be difficult to obtain parking, you might be able to on the Pacific Coast Highway. Depending on the day and season, midday lots can cost anywhere from $6 to $15.
The majority of the state parks and beaches in California provide restrooms, showers, and locations where you may rent beach wheelchairs. Beach wheelchairs are available for use at more than 100 beaches in California. There is a tiny campground at Leo Carillo. A natural playground is created by offshore kelp beds, caverns, tide pools, and the wilderness of the Santa Monica Mountains. There are flush toilets, coin-operated hot showers, and 140 flat, tree-shaded sites available. Summer weekend reservations should be scheduled months in advance.
- Location: Pacific Coast Highway near the Los Angeles-Ventura County line
El Matador, another well-known beach in Malibu, is arguably the most beautiful. Parking is available on the bluffs, and a trail leads to towering sandstone rock formations that rise from emerald coves. Dolphins breach the surface beyond the waves as sunbathers meander through the tides.
The beaches in Malibu are not private, despite what the locals would have you believe. All are welcome to enjoy the 27 miles of coastal mountains, pristine coves, broad stretches of golden sand, and epic surf as long as they remain below the high-tide line. This implies that you are free to stroll, swim, and explore the beaches at Carbon Beach, Broad Beach, Little Dume, and other popular hangouts.
Security personnel may give you the runaround, but they have no legal authority to forbid you from being there. Keep an eye out for the brown “Coastal Access” signs as you are driving down Pacific Coast Highway. Don’t be frightened off by the fact that locals have been known to remove them and replace them with “Private Beach” or “No Trespassing” signs.
- Location: Pacific Coast Highway, City of Malibu, CA 90265
In Malibu, California, at 30000 Pacific Coast Highway (PCH), there is a county beach called Zuma Beach. It is one of the biggest and busiest beaches in Los Angeles County, California, and is renowned for its excellent surf and long, wide sands. In Los Angeles County, it consistently rates as one of the beaches with the cleanest water.
Zuma, one of the top Beaches in Los Angeles, is a classic, but choosing a favorite beach in Malibu is like choosing a favorite child. Due to the broad expanse of blonde sand that has been drawing valley youth to the shore since the 1970s, it is simple to locate. Despite the occasionally rough surf, it’s a popular place for swimming and body surfing, and in the winter, you can see gray whales migrating.
Malibu lodging can be expensive, but there are a few cute inns and swanky home rentals that make you feel like a celebrity.
- Location: 30000 Pacific Coast Hwy, Malibu, CA 90265
Santa Monica’s expansive beaches and pier, where the iconic Ferris wheel and roller coaster greet everyone, attract children, tourists, and people who adore them. Sunbathing and swimming are two obvious activities to enjoy this 3.5-mile expanse of beach, but the pier is the primary draw. It is dominated by the rollercoaster, arcades, and carnival games of Pacific Park Amusement Park. An aquarium and a historic carousel are nearby. The pier is most picturesque when it is framed by a California sunset and when it comes to life in the summer with free concerts and outdoor movies.
The Original Muscle Beach, located south of the pier, is where the Southern California fitness craze got its start in the middle of the 20th century. A new generation of fitness enthusiasts are being attracted by new equipment.
You can get to Venice Beach by following the South Bay Bicycle Trail, a paved bike and walking trail, south for about 1.5 miles (or about 20 miles to get to LA’s South Bay beaches). On the pier and at beachside shops, you can hire bicycles or inline skates.
- Location: Ocean Ave, Santa Monica, CA 90401
On the well-known Venice Boardwalk, sometimes referred to as Ocean Front Walk, life in Venice moves at a different pace. As far as LA experiences go, it’s a must. It’s a freak show, a human zoo, and a zany carnival packed with Hula-Hoop magicians, old-timey jazz ensembles, solo distorted garage rockers, and artists (good and terrible).
It’s a one-of-a-kind experience, so be prepared for sensory overload on Venice’s Boardwalk. Buff bodybuilders rub shoulders with street entertainers, vendors of sunglasses, string bikinis, Mexican ponchos, and marijuana while skateboarders, rollerbladers, and graffiti artists each have their own space.
The crowd thins out and the golden sands spread out in a cleaner manner at South Venice Beach. Boydsurfing conditions are excellent since waves roll in frequently. Volleyball matches can start up at any time. Because parking is a problem, it is primarily a local scene. Just take your bike.
- Location: Los Angeles, 90291, California
Many first-timers choose Santa Monica or Venice when they want to hit the beaches in Los Angeles. Manhattan Beach, on the other hand, is the ideal coastal hideaway for people seeking a more laid-back atmosphere.
Manhattan Beach is conveniently located near LAX in the South Bay area of Los Angeles, and the beach is, of course, its main attraction. The sight occasionally resembles a scene from a modernized Baywatch because the sand and surf here are the real deal. The annual Manhattan Beach Open, a professional beach volleyball summer event, is held on the incredibly flat sand, which is permanently peppered with volleyball nets. Of course, surfing is popular there. Another significant lure to MB (as the locals refer to it) is the International Surf Festival.
Gorgeous Living would undoubtedly be the name of the magazine if the impossibly lovely Manhattan Beach had one. It may have become fashionable, but that salty-dog heart still beats in this bastion of surf music and the cradle of beach volleyball. Bikinis, friendly waves, and smiles as big as those sunglasses are all part of the seaside fun in this hip town.
For Manhattan Beach’s broad stretch of golden sand, remove your shoes. There are sand bottom surf breaks, pick-up volleyball courts, and a pier with stunning ocean views.
- Location: southwestern Los Angeles County, California
Abalone Cove Shoreline Park
On the Palos Verdes Peninsula in the Los Angeles Metropolitan Area, Abalone Cove Shoreline Park is a coastal gem. The park is renowned for its exceptional tide pools and includes an ecological preserve. From two prominent places, trails meander on the cliff and lead to breathtaking vistas. Three distinct coves with beaches and tide pools can be found below these sites. There are incredible rock tunnels where waves surge in and break through at the end and the base of the points. To see the tide pools and tunnels, it is worthwhile to consult tide charts and visit these beaches at low tide. An overview of the park’s three beaches is provided above, followed by a list of links.
Abalone Cove Shoreline Park, a hidden gem among the fashionable South Bay Beaches, is the ideal location for looking for starfish, anemones, and other creatures of the tidal pools. Walk carefully because this rock-filled eco-preserve is a delicate area. Watch your footing as you descend to the shore because some parts are rather sloping.
- Location: 5970 Palos Verdes Dr S, Rancho Palos Verdes, CA 90275
A seaside city in California’s Los Angeles County is called Hermosa Beach. According to the 2020 U.S. Census, it had 19,728 residents. One of the three Beach Cities, the city is situated in the South Bay portion of the Greater Los Angeles region. The other two, Redondo Beach to the east and south, and Manhattan Beach to the north, encircle Hermosa Beach. Sunbathing, beach volleyball, surfing, paddleboarding, bars, cycling, and running are all popular activities on the city’s beach.
Yes, Hermosa’s beach is very gorgeous; it is long, level, and littered with permanent volleyball nets. Visit 16th Street to watch neighborhood dudes bump, set, and spike in advance of the annual AVP Hermosa Open in August. In this most eccentric of the South Bay’s beach communities, you can still find a legendary dive bar a cool, laid-back distance from the pier’s bustle.
- Location: Los Angeles County, California
In terms of topography and wealth, the Palos Verdes Peninsula is the South Bay’s most affluent neighborhood. Additionally, it provides amazing views of the gorgeous seashore. To view it all, you may either travel to Malaga Cove or take a beautiful drive or bicycle trip. The only sandy Palos Verdes beach with a cliff-backed shoreline that is easily reachable by commoners is this crescent-shaped stretch of land. It mixes into rocky tidal pools and provides surfers with good rolling waves. There are no lifeguards present.
The typical offenders—Santa Monica, Venice Beach, Redondo Beach, Manhattan Beach, etc.—are the subject of a great deal of discussion regarding the Los Angeles beach scene. However, there are some highly underrated beaches out there, as the kids like to say. Arrive at Malaga Cove.
Malaga Cove is a really cute little spot that folks should check out, but nobody really knows about it outside those who live there, it seems. If we were to compare the homes there to anything, we’d say they resemble Beverly Hills of the South Bay.
- Location: 43 Malaga Cove Plz, Palos Verdes Estates, CA 90274
Crystal Cove State Beach
Crystal Cove in southern Newport Beach combines 2400 acres of forests with 3.2 miles of undeveloped coastline. A 12.3-acre coastal area of the park contains a federally recognized historic district that is home to a large number of well-preserved cottages from the 1930s through the 1950s, several of which are available for overnight guests. You can forget you’re in the center of a bustling metropolis while you’re in this part of Orange County.
There is an underwater park at Crystal Cove. Divers can explore two old anchors that date back to the 1800s and the location of a Navy plane accident from the 1940s. On the unspoiled shoreline, on the other hand, you can go tide pooling, fishing, kayaking, and surfing.
To its metropolitan surrounds, Crystal Cove State Park offers a lovely contrast with its rolling waves, sand beaches, tidepools, gently rising hills, and densely forested valleys and slopes. Crystal Cove, one of Orange County’s largest remaining instances of open space and natural beachfront, is situated off the congested Pacific Coast Highway between Corona del Mar and Laguna Beach.
The park’s Mediterranean climate is characterized by summer mornings that are damp and foggy, but clear off by midday to bring warm, sunny days and chilly evenings. A popular destination for outdoor enthusiasts, Crystal Cove State Park features 3.2 miles of coastline, 2,400 acres of backcountry wilderness, and an offshore undersea region.
- Location: Pacific Coast Highway between Corona del Mar and Laguna Beach,