5 Best Bike Rides on the Los Angeles Coast
Cyclists ride the Marvin Braude bike trail in Santa Monica | Santa Monica l © Eric Fredericks / Flickr
Tracing nearly the entire county’s west coast, the Marvin Braude Bike Trail is a 22-mile (35 km) stretch which is separate from L.A.’s busy streets.
This path provides inspiring viewpoints, sandy beaches, and a number of memorable day trips waiting to happen. Bring a few friends, gather the family, or take a solo adventure to these top L.A. coastal bike destinations.
Will Rogers State Beach
Will Rogers Beach is a secluded haven away from the city’s bustling center located seven miles (11 km) north of Venice Beach. With a return time of approximately one hour, this relaxed path is easy for cyclists of any level. This beachside bike trail through Santa Monica and under the famous Santa Monica Pier extends further, next to dramatic bluffs and rolling waves. Stop for a game of frisbee or cool off in the Pacific Ocean. Popular TV shows filmed here include Baywatch and Beverly Hills, 90210.
Dockweiler State Beach & RV Park
With a return time of one hour, this 6.6-mile (10km) cycle to Dockweiler State Beach first takes you wisping through the small paths lining the docks of Marina Del Rey with impressive views of both sailboats
and superyachts. Known to locals simply as Dockweiler, this is the only beach in the L.A. county that permits and encourages bonfires directly on the beach. On a crowded evening, groups of people sit around the campsites’ many designated fire pits. There are grills for outdoor cooking, bathrooms and a parking lot where RV’s from around the country come for the ocean views. The atmosphere is social and friendly. In the daytime, watch airplanes from L.A.X. airport fly directly overhead while taking in the southern California sun at this rugged seaside oasis.
Manhattan Beach Pier
Located 10 miles (16 km) away from Venice Beach, this ride estimates a return time of a 1.5 hours. The path is on the beach with west-facing ocean views and even has a spot to stop and hang glide along the way. The ride is easy to moderate with two small hills. The Manhattan Beach Pier and the surrounding coastal community is an ideal day trip for those who may have other plans later in the day or evening. Stop in Manhattan Beach for lunch and a few well-deserved pints or head down to the beach for a game of volleyball at one of the countless nets dotting the beach. Take in the sun, go for a swim in the ocean, or check out the sunset before turning around and heading back. The relaxed atmosphere will be a breath of fresh air along with some low impact exercise.
Hermosa Beach Pier
Located 12 miles (19 km) from Venice on the bike trail is the Hermosa Beach Pier. With a return time of approximately two hours, this destination is ideal for anyone with a flexible timeframe and looking for a bit more adventure. In the daytime, Hermosa Beach is a laidback family-friendly beach community, with plenty of boutique shopping and lunch options available. Stay past the sunset during the weekends and the area offers a crowded nightlife scene with dancing and live music. Each year, during Memorial Day weekend, the city puts on the largest arts and crafts fair in Southern California known as Fiesta Hermosa.
Redondo Beach Pier
This ride is a bit more challenging with a return time of approximately 2.5 hours, though it is mostly flat and offers unique opportunities such as sailing and whale watching
among others. Originally built in 1889, the Redondo Beach Pier is 14 miles (22 km) from Venice Beach. It’s nestled among a seaside lagoon, making it ideal for both fishing and paddleboarding
. Named California coast’s largest endless pier due to its circular design, its massive 70,000 sq. ft. holds over 50 souvenir shops, dive bars, restaurants, and an authentic dockside fish market where freshly caught fish including crab, lobster, mussels etc., are purchased live or steamed upon request.