Travel Guide: Venice Beach, Los Angeles
Venice Beach, CA
Be Ready to Bike!
Long on our wanderlust list that has been pushed back year after year, is our West Coast CA Road Trip. After years of procrastinating, we finally hit the road.. but with kids! Although not as originally planned, here is our Travel Guide to Venice Beach, LA and the first leg of our tour up to Palm Springs, Coachella, San Fran, Big Sur then back!
Have your sneakers or comfy shoes ready.. because if there is one thing you can be sure of down here, you'll want to bike your way around the beauty of Venice up to Santa Monica, and down the coast - all around Marina Del Ray and beyond.
Welcome to Cali, Baby.
Venice Beach, home to the birth of modern skate boarding and the epitome of cool was founded by Abbot Kinney as a seaside resort. Now home to the hip crowd of LA, you can spend days walking the waterways, biking the waterfront boardwalk, exploring the beautiful cafe scene and now super cool boutiques of Abbot Kinney. Home to the famous Philip Dixon house (more on that in later blog posts) Venice Beach was the perfect first stop on our West Coast California Road Trip.
While the Venice Beach area went through its 'slum' period, Abbot Kinney Boulevard was recently named the coolest street on the planet - and is home to some of the hippest boutiques for anyone influenced by the California boho style - noteably Flynn Skye, Principessa, Ananda, Nightcap Clothing and so many fabulous vintage store heading down to Santa Monica. A must visit is Mystic Journey Bookstore .. be prepared to leave with your luggage back home full!
WHERE TO STAY & DINE
Travelling with kids is a mission in itself - we are totally in favour of Air BNB these days and found a superb family home right off Abbot Kinney.
Erewhon Natural Foods was an incredible whole foods market that literally stocked everything you could think of - nourishing and healthy for your body as well as some fantastic pre made healthy meals (hot and cold) in the fresh food department.
Gjelina is a hot spot for dining in the area which is an absolute must, but there are SO SO many incredible local mexican restaurants which we loved around here, including organic Tacaya & closer to Santa Monica is Lula's, a fun family friendly Mexican cantina, more than happy to fill up my Margarita glass many times while the kids had fun on the patio.
Our favourite pit stop for morning coffee or cold brew before hitting our daily bike ride was the Butchers Daughter. They do a fabulous cold pressed juice which kick starts your day in the sun before heading down Abbott Kinney onto our boardwalk ride from Venice to Santa Monica.
Needing a sushi fix? Wabi Sabi was fantastic (pricey but lively) and great people watching.
We could have stayed in the Venice Beach area literally for the rest of our lives.. the culture here is so laid back and perfect for kids. You'll never be bored of people watching down on the Boulevard and we had a blast finding our favourite Hank Moody locations around the waterways.