Last year I headed out to California for my 21 day honeymoon and one of the major stops along the way was staying in Santa Monica. Being just a stones throw away, on one very hot and sunny afternoon we decided to take the boardwalk from Santa Monica Pier down to Venice.
From Santa Monica Pier the boardwalk takes you all the way down to Venice beach and for this route you can either cycle or go by foot. Sarah wanted to cycle the route however I fancied a bit of a longer walk and so we ditched the bikes idea.. which turned out to be a big mistake!
Along the route it is as you would expect, parallel to the beach with the occasional toilet block but surprisingly no drinks stands. You pass plenty of places along the way however including a lot of street art…
and of course the famous Muscle Beach Gym…
When we eventually reached Venice it was pretty obvious that we had arrived. Everything went a little Camden with quirky buildings, expressive graffiti and a lot of people with some very big personalities. There was music playing all around us, food stalls everywhere and plenty of street sellers trying to flog you whatever crap they had made that day! This only added to the charm however that Venice lived up to its reputation as being very quirky and alternative.
From Santa Monica it took us well over over half an hour to reach Venice and being California the temperature on this day was hitting the mid-30’s – seriously hot! The walk offers very little in the way of shade so if you’re going to take this route make sure you have plenty of suncream on and a hat so you don’t get burnt legs like I did!
Reaching Venice we were pretty exhausted from the heat and direct sunlight; we then really regretted not having bikes to cycle back to Santa Monica with. Instead we had to make the return walk which we very quickly gave up on and flagged down a Big Blue Bus which took us almost right outside our hotel, the Fairmont Miramar.
My overall impression of Venice was a strange one. If you’re into your street art, Camden style quirk and quite frankly a lot of very crazy/unique people then Venice will be right up your street! For me it was great to experience however I’m getting older now and like things a little more settled and calm!
Venice definitely lives up to its reputation, if you’re heading to California this year I’d recommend checking it out.