I’m currently in San Francisco soaking up the California sun, so I thought I’d throw together a post from my last trip to California, in January 2011. I spent three days in Los Angeles, eating tacos with my fellow travel bloggers, CouchSurfing and walking through the stalls of the Santa Monica Farmer’s Market. Suzanna, my CS host, took me to the market for breakfast. She headed back into town and I spent the afternoon exploring Santa Monica and the iconic Venice Beach.
While the rest of the country was wearing coats and scarves, I was sweating through my sundress, drinking a Mexican Coca Cola in quirky Venice Beach. I couldn’t believe how many people were out and about, surfing, tanning, skateboarding and busking.
Venice Beach reminds me a lot of an oceanside Little Five Points in Atlanta, with tattoo parlors, funky clothing outlets and “natural remedy” stores. The sidewalks are lined with people selling their hippie wares, from artwork to jewelry to incense and everything in between.
The buskers in Venice are legendary. There’s dancers and magicians. One guy I saw was walking on broken glass. Some of them just want your money and have no real skill to show.
If You Go
The Santa Monica Big Blue Bus #1 and #2 run to Venice Beach and drop off at the Boardwalk.
Accommodation in Venice Beach is cheaper than in the rest of Los Angeles, as there are more budget options. Pod Share Venice Beach, The Venice Beach Hostel, and Venice Beach Hostel are all cheap options.
To learn more about Los Angeles’ history and culture, check out Urban Adventures’ tours of Venice Beach and beyond.