Top Things to Do in Santa Monica California

Santa Monica is a true California beach town just west of downtown Los Angeles.  You can visit almost any season and feel the laid-back vibes of summer with 72 degree weather year-round.  Surfers, yogis, cyclists, hikers, sun seekers come here to relax, catch a wave, blaze a trail or cycle the 26-mile beach path.

Sharing a list of our Top 5 Things to Do and Where to Stay & Dine in Santa Monica.

1.  Place to Stay:

We stayed at Oceana  an all-suite luxury hotel in the heart of Santa Monica where guests receive impeccable service.

Guests feel like they are in a home away from home with all the comfort and amenities needed.  Centrally located on palm-tree-lined Ocean Avenue, next to the Palisades Park that overlooks the Pacific Ocean.

The hotel is designed with California modern decor and seaside chic.

There are 77 spacious elegant beach side suites with a spacious bedroom, private spa-like bath and a handsome living area with state-of-the-art technology.

The hotel offers complimentary yoga classes and also beach cruiser bicycles to cycle along the beach boardwalk to iconic Santa Monica Pier.  Or there’s always a heated pool to relax poolside.


It’s only a 5-10 mins walk to Santa Monica’s Third Street Promenade or shops on Montana Avenue.   See more of our recommendations below.

2.  Places to Eat: 

Next on our list of Top 5 things in Santa Monica, some of our favorite restaurants during our stay including Oceana’s oceanfront Dining Room Restaurant where you’ll savor some of Santa Monica’s freshest flavors from the local farmer’s market, serving up classic Coastal California cuisine.

There’s also Santa Monica’s Ivy at the Shore, and within a mile or so south, we visited some excellent restaurants – Sunny SpotThe Tasting Kitchen,  Gjelina, along Abbot Kinney Blvd.

3.  Top Activities:

In Santa Monica, right out your hotel door, you can go for a morning run on the beach, or use one of the hotel bicycles for a bike ride along the beach bike path, or roller blade to the Ferris Wheel at the Santa Monica Pier.

4.  Places to Shop: 

Just a short walk from the hotel, you can go shop at Santa Monica Place, explore Main Street and Montana Avenue, or check out the Third Street Promenade.

5.  Places to Hike:  

There are several hiking trails in the Santa Monica Mountains and we choose a 5.5 mile hike called the Paseo Miramar Trail to Parker Overlook.  Bring water to stay hydrated!  This hike offers a good workout with canyon and coastal views along the way.  Near Topanga Canyon, this trail climbs uphill on a well-maintained trail to lookout with a view of the Pacific Ocean.

Read more at  Paseo Miramar Trail to Parker Overlook | Santa Monica California Hikes |

Good to note:  We will be adding to this list so check back for more of our favorites!

Acknowledgements:  Global Adventuress thanks Oceana Beach Club Hotel for hosting us during our stay.