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Walking or swimming from Santa Monica to Venice Beach

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Walking or swimming from Santa Monica to Venice Beach

Is it advisable to do this?

I will be staying near LAX, but am willing to make the daytrip to these great places. I am aware that Manhattan Beach is closer but that looks a bit tacky to me.

I am only in LA for 3 days, the first of which I think I will need to rest a little after my 10hr flight from Tokyo. On my second and third days I want to do the following:

Beverly Hills/Hollywood (including Universal Studios)

Santa Monica/Venice Beach

Is it logical to do both beaches in the same day? I am more of a walking, exploring person, rather than sunbathing (plus I will be on my own lol) so I don't want to stay too long in the same place.

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1. Re: Walking or swimming from Santa Monica to Venice Beach

Why not rent a bike?

I've been told that there are lots of places to rent a bike - I'm sure the local experts can tell you exactly where :)

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2. Re: Walking or swimming from Santa Monica to Venice Beach

Is there some reason why you are stayin near LAX? It is a terrible place to base yourself. Can you change your hotel? I trust you have a car for your stay.

I've never heard anyone describe Manhattan Beach as tacky. It has been some time since I've been there. But, that is quite an affluent neighborhood. Speaking of tacky, have you looked at recent reviews of Venice Beach? It is the epitome of tacky, gritty L.A. Take a look.

It is easy to walk from Santa Monica to Venice Beach. Yes, you can check them out the same day. An option is to rent a bike. Swimming? I guess it is possible, but it doesn't seem feasible except for the Olympian set.

For your first morning, before heading to Hollywood or Santa Monica. I'd recommend stopping at The Getty Center in Brentwood. Never heard of it? It is the city's #1 tourist attraction. Look at the reviews. Certainly beats Hollywood which will take you an hour or so. Universal will take about half a day.

HTH

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3. Re: Walking or swimming from Santa Monica to Venice Beach

DanishJourney and HitchKennedy, thanks for your responses.

Unofrtunately I won't have a car on my stay in LA, I will be relying on the very poor public transport system there, which undoubtedly makes my stay more stressful?

I have not booked any hotels yet but I am finalising my plans now.

I have always worried about a hotel in LA. The city is simply too big to travel around without a car (or without flying). So I was just going to leave LAX and base myself at a good value hotel and then make day trips to a beach or two, and a daytrip to Hollywood. However it is not even clear how to get to these beaches from LAX, so I am certainly going to need to change my plans.

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4. Re: Walking or swimming from Santa Monica to Venice Beach

What's your budget? No, you don't necessarily need a car to enjoy your visit in L.A. The public transit system has improved very well the past few years. However, if you stay near LAX, the public transit experience WILL be dreadful.

You have options.

1) Stay in Hollywood. Places like the Orchid or the Motel 6 provide inexpensive accomodations near Hollywood Boulevard and the Red Line subway. You can get here from LAX cheaply via the LAX Flyaway shuttle to Union Station in downtown and then take the Red Line to Hollywood. You can get to Santa Monica via the 704 bus. You can get to Universal via the Red Line.

2) Stay in downtown. Places like the Metro Plaza, Kawada or Ritz Milner offer basic accomodations. This part of L.A. has become one of the most interesting parts of the city and very rewarding for visitors like yourself who wish to explore on foot. You can get here via the LAX Flyaway shuttle. You can catch the Red Line to Hollywood and Universal. You can catch the #10 Big Blue bus to Santa Monica.

3) Stay in Santa Monica. There's an inexpensive place called the Seashore or the youth hostel.

HTH

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5. Re: Walking or swimming from Santa Monica to Venice Beach

You can easily walk between the two, not swim between the two. There are bike rental shops every 500 yards or so, you can easily bike between the two.

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6. Re: Walking or swimming from Santa Monica to Venice Beach

The beaches at Santa Monica and Venice are a continuation of one another. If you walk south along the ocean in Santa Monica, you will, at some point, be in Venice walking along the ocean. There is no dividing line -- it's one continuous beach and one continuous ocean.

Based upon your requirements, I would do this: Stay in our Westwood neighborhoods. Here are the reasons:

a. There is an express bus between LAX and Westwood called the Westwood Flyaway Bus. It costs only $5 and the transfer time is the shortest of all of the express buses -- just 25 minutes when the traffic is mild.

b. Westwood is in between the beaches (Santa Monica/Venice) and the inland communities (Beverly Hills/Hollywood/Universal).

c. There are hotels in all price ranges and lots of dining options of all kinds and in all price ranges (handy, for someone traveling alone). The Westwood neighborhood is designed, primarily, for students at the neighboring University (UCLA) so there's plenty of 'practical shopping' there -- food stores, pharmacies, etc. The campus is also interesting to explore (great architecture and don't forget to visit the 'book store'). There's also a wonderful, small, free art museum on campus known as the Fowler. (Don't miss it along with its 'sister art museum' in Westwood, the Hammer).

d. The public transit is bountiful. Wilshire Bl (a main road that passes from downtown Los Angeles all the way to the beaches) is within walking distance of most Westwood hotels. The #720 express bus (or ir's slower cousin, the #20 -- $1.50 fare or buy a $5 DAY PASS for unlimited rides) will take you to Santa Monica in less than 20 minutes.

Taking the same buses eastbound will take you to Beverly Hills in less than 10 minutes. The #2 metro bus also passes through westwood and it will take you to West Hollywood and Hollywood (25 to 35 minutes). Transfer in Hollywood to the #156 bus or to the red line metro rail for access to Universal.

Westwood is where you want to be. What are your travel dates? Your nightly budget for a hotel?

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7. Re: Walking or swimming from Santa Monica to Venice Beach

HSJ is right. Westwood is a good idea. It will allow you to get to The Getty more easily via public transit.

HTH

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8. Re: Walking or swimming from Santa Monica to Venice Beach

Yes, Westwood is the one! LOL, HTH!

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9. Re: Walking or swimming from Santa Monica to Venice Beach

HopSkipJump, I am in LA for the nights of 28/29/30 October before heading to Seoul on Oct 31 on a 13hr flight. :(

My budget cannot really exceed £100 per night.

Although tbh I looked at Loews Santa Monica Beach Hotel last night, which is above my price range, and lo and behold no rooms were available for my dates anyway!

What is high season in LA? Am I going at the wrong time?

Also, to save me starting a new thread, can I ask if dogs are a nuisance on and around LA's beaches?

I don't mean the mess they make...I am scared of dogs, especially bigger ones and the type that could attack me. Even in the UK this month, a rottweiler mauled a little toddler on a beach (and the coward owner just ran away!). Luckily the toddler survived, albeit with much scarring.

I am scared that LA drug gangs will be hanging around the areas near to the beach walkways and roads near the beach, and their pitbulls will be running loose everywhere.

Edited: 24 August 2011, 20:16
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10. Re: Walking or swimming from Santa Monica to Venice Beach

I recommend biking between the two! I was in LA in May and we did this... it was really fun. There are a bunch of bike shops... we used Sea Mist Rentals; the shop is located right under the Santa Monica Pier. It was pretty cheap and you can add a basket to put your stuff in while you ride. We were able to bike all the way down to the "end" of Venice Beach and back...

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