Later we decided to see the suburbs of Los Angeles – namely Santa Monica, located 30 minutes drive from LA. Santa Monica is famous for its gorgeous beaches and pier. This is the perfect place to enjoy the mightiness of the Pacific Ocean.
There is everything necessary to have a good rest: cafes, restaurants, souvenir stores, theme park, sports ground. It is possible to stay in one of the beautiful hotels along the coast to have more time to appreciate this special peaceful place.
We started to explore Santa Monica on the pier, which was built in the early 1909 year. Santa Monica pier is like a magnet that attracts all the guests of Los Angeles.
As soon as we got on the pier, we noticed Bubba Gump Restaurant. It is a chain of shrimp restaurants, which appeared thanks to the legendary film “Forrest Gump” starring Tom Hanks. There is a live queue in Bubba Gump restaurants and sometimes it requires waiting a little bit longer than usual. But it’s worth it! Everything in the interior of the restaurants is connected to the film plot. A lot of phrases were adopted from the film in the decoration of the restaurant. We can even say that it is a restaurant-museum, dedicated to Forrest Gump film. Restaurants of Bubba Gump chain can be found in many tourist cities of America. We visited this restaurant in Las Vegas, we will tell about it later.
After the Bubba Gump Restaurant, we saw a theme park “Pacific Park” on the Santa Monica pier, where everyone can spend a good time with children or feel again like a child.
And 130-feet-high Pacific Wheel with its amazing views of the coastline. By the way, Pacific Wheel is the world’s only solar-powered Ferris wheel.
We were lucky to test both attractions.
We met a lot of talented performers and artists along the pier.
Almost at every step we tried to capture as many views of the coastline as possible. The scenery is really fantastic!
Santa Monica is also famous for the fact that the legendary Route 66 highway finishes exactly here. The highway, which became one of the most famous roads in the United States, originally ran from Chicago, Illinois, through Missouri, Kansas, Oklahoma, Texas, New Mexico, and Arizona states before ending in Santa Monica in Los Angeles County, California, covering a total of almost 2 500 miles. This highway connected two different parts of grandiose America a became the symbol of American nation uniting. U.S. Route 66 also known as the Main Street of America or the Mother Road. A lot of movies were shot about this highway. Interesting to know that there is a sign of US Route 66 finish on the Santa Monica pier and a lot of tourists are ready to stand in a long queue to get that special photo near this sign. We weren’t an exception.
Beautiful views to the coast.
In spite of the fact that the water in the Pacific ocean is cold, there are always brave people, who are ready to plunge here.
Lifeguard towers along the coast are like separate sight here. They are a local symbol.
There is a wonderful, peaceful mood on the shore: it seems like time stopped here. The sound of the crashing waves clears the body from the accumulated during the day tiredness, fills with vital, creative energy. Just catch this moment!
A lot of sports grounds are installed along the coast. We saw many people jogging, training, riding bicycles, or kick-scooters here.
We could spend here the entire day but we had to move further.
The next location, where we headed was Venice. No, not the one in Italy. Can you imagine, there is such a district in Los Angeles. Venice was founded in 1905 as a maritime resort town. It was an independent town until 1926, then it was connected to Los Angeles. This district is famous for its canals, beaches, and pedestrian promenade. Small bridges are layed across the canals. It is possible to drive across these bridges and enjoy the picturesque views of the district.
Later we drove across the Marina del Rey harbor and saw huge beautiful yachts and boats there. This harbor is located not far from the Venice district.
We planned to visit also the Griffith Observatory in Los Angeles. We heard that there are stunning views to the night city from the hill of this observatory. But unfortunately, the observatory was under the reconstruction exactly for the period of our trip. Of course, we were slightly upset. But maybe whenever we will be lucky to come to Los Angeles again and we will finally visit the observatory.
To be continued…
Author (c): Iryna Melnyk
Photos (c): Nick Melnyk