Thanks to a quiet and peaceful night at the Stay On Beverly Hostel, I woke up well rested and eager to go. I set out for the one place that both locals and tourists flock to on the regular: Venice Beach. It took me an hour and two bus transfers to reach the famed beach, so my first sights of it seemed well deserved. It was an overcast weekday so the crowds were minimal ( yet I still managed to almost cause a skateboard collision) but that did nothing to damage the atmosphere. Under the palm trees, surrounded by graffiti and skaters, and with the ocean winking at me, the near-empty beach felt exactly as it should: free, vibrant, and cool.
I walked down the pier first, looking at the different vender tables and stopping for a bite to eat. There’s tons of ice cream parlors and cheap pizza spots on either side of the pier. I settled for a personal pizza at one of the many cafes- it wasn’t the best food I’ve ever tasted but it filled my tummy.
I wandered over to the skating rink and watched the skaters drop in and out and practice their tricks and flips.After a while, I got dizzy just watching them so I took off my sandals, stepped into the sand, and walked over to the main attraction: the ocean.
The sun had finally broken through , so the dense sand was bathed in warm sunlight. Although there were runners, smooching couples, and lots of solitary picture takers ( like me), the beach was still quiet and it was easy to find large, empty stretches of it to call your own for a moment.
With the sun starting to set, I said goodbye to Venice Beach.
And headed to an equally famous destination: Third Street Promenade.
The outdoor shopping district, located in Santa Monica, is just a short bus ride away from Venice Beach. In addition to passing beautiful vistas , the Promenade is already decorated with twinkling Christmas lights. What I liked most about it is that it was a perfect mix of high-end and affordable stores. Anyone would feel comfortable shopping here. I had a mini-shopping spree in H&M, got a coffee to enjoy while I browsed through more stories, and headed home to plan my final day in LA.