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Santa Monica Pier

Vacation Travel Guide
Santa Monica Pier which includes rides

You'll find beachside kitsch, boardwalk ambience and carnival fun at this sunbaked LA attraction that’s more than a hundred years old.

You can get plenty of kicks near the end of Route 66. Santa Monica Pier now marks the official western point of the legendary U.S. highway, one of the country’s first. This world-famous stretch of pavement originally ran from Chicago to Los Angeles, and was later extended to Santa Monica, where many travelers concluded their cross-country trek with a visit to this pleasure pier of fun and excitement.

Though one of southern California’s last remaining vintage piers, this is no rusting relic of a bygone age. Open 24 hours a day, 365 days of the year, it’s a lively venue packed with musical and theatrical entertainment and activities for the whole family.

Ride a roller coaster or sit atop the world’s first solar-powered Ferris wheel, which stands 130 feet above the Pacific Ocean. Munch on cotton candy, cast a line and see what you can catch or stroll along the planks to take in the salty sea air.

Other attractions include arcades, restaurants, artists and street performers. Learn highflying acrobatics at the trapeze school or hire a bike and cycle your way around the sights. An aquarium focusing on the local marine life sits below the pier at beach level. Kids will love interactive activities such as touch tanks and marine biology classes.

One of the most popular sights is the restored wooden carousel with colorful hand-carved horses. Built in 1922 and housed in its own building called the Looff Hippodrome, the carousel is most famously featured in the Robert Redford and Paul Newman film, The Sting.You’ll find tranquil moments away from the crowds in the viewing deck on the second level of the hippodrome. Most people miss this part of the pier so it’s a wonderfully quiet spot to enjoy ocean views.

Santa Monica is about 18 miles (29 miles) west of downtown, just north of Venice Beach.

For more details on interesting local attractions and activities, check out our things to do in Los Angeles page.

Top Hotels Close to Santa Monica Pier

Shore Hotel
Shore Hotel
4 out of 5
1515 Ocean Avenue, Santa Monica, CA
Fully refundableReserve now, pay when you stay
The price is $287 per night from Aug 31 to Aug 31
Located in Downtown Santa Monica, this beach hotel is within a 10-minute walk of Santa Monica Pier and Santa Monica Beach. Venice Beach and Venice Beach Boardwalk ...
4.3/5Excellent! (961 reviews)
"It is an excellent hotel to stay at. Get the ocean view."

Reviewed on Jul 14, 2021

Shore Hotel
Loews Santa Monica Beach Hotel
Loews Santa Monica Beach Hotel
5 out of 5
1700 Ocean Ave, Santa Monica, CA
The price is $395 per night from Aug 17 to Aug 17
Located in Downtown Santa Monica, this beachfront hotel is on the boardwalk and within a 5-minute walk of Original Muscle Beach and Santa Monica Beach. Santa ...
4.3/5Excellent! (949 reviews)
"The staff was very nice and accommodating. The room with the fire pit was awesome! Only thing I would have liked would have been a coffee machine as well as a fridge in the room."

Reviewed on Aug 1, 2021

Loews Santa Monica Beach Hotel
Hilton Santa Monica Hotel & Suites
Hilton Santa Monica Hotel & Suites
3.5 out of 5
1707 4th St, Santa Monica, CA
The price is $309 per night from Aug 8 to Aug 8
Located in Downtown Santa Monica, this beach hotel is within a 10-minute walk of Main Street Santa Monica, Third Street Promenade, and Santa Monica Beach. Santa ...
4/5Very Good! (964 reviews)
"Nice hotel, good place to stay. About a 0.5 mile walk to the beach, which is OK but not ideal with small children"

Reviewed on Aug 1, 2021

Hilton Santa Monica Hotel & Suites
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.

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Best Lodging Options Near Santa Monica Pier

Hotel Carmel
Hotel Carmel
3 out of 5
201 Broadway, Santa Monica, CA
The price is $199 per night from Aug 8 to Aug 8
Hotel Carmel
Loews Santa Monica Beach Hotel
Loews Santa Monica Beach Hotel
5 out of 5
1700 Ocean Ave, Santa Monica, CA
The price is $395 per night from Aug 17 to Aug 17
Loews Santa Monica Beach Hotel
Hilton Santa Monica Hotel & Suites
Hilton Santa Monica Hotel & Suites
3.5 out of 5
1707 4th St, Santa Monica, CA
The price is $309 per night from Aug 8 to Aug 8
Hilton Santa Monica Hotel & Suites
Shore Hotel
Shore Hotel
4 out of 5
1515 Ocean Avenue, Santa Monica, CA
The price is $287 per night from Aug 31 to Aug 31
Shore Hotel
The Huntley Hotel
The Huntley Hotel
4.5 out of 5
1111 2nd St, Santa Monica, CA
The price is $309 per night from Aug 8 to Aug 8
The Huntley Hotel
Ocean View Hotel
Ocean View Hotel
3 out of 5
1447 Ocean Ave, Santa Monica, CA
The price is $237 per night from Aug 15 to Aug 15
Ocean View Hotel
Viceroy Santa Monica
Viceroy Santa Monica
4 out of 5
1819 Ocean Avenue, Santa Monica, CA
The price is $367 per night from Aug 17 to Aug 17
Viceroy Santa Monica
Wyndham Santa Monica At The Pier
Wyndham Santa Monica At The Pier
3.5 out of 5
120 Colorado Avenue, Santa Monica, CA
The price is $223 per night from Sep 1 to Sep 1
Wyndham Santa Monica At The Pier
Georgian Hotel
Georgian Hotel
4 out of 5
1415 Ocean Ave, Santa Monica, CA
The price is $339 per night from Sep 1 to Sep 1
Georgian Hotel
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.