Welcome to Santa Monica
A hip beach city that’s one of the top tourist destinations in the Los Angeles area.
Santa Monica is a resort destination on the west side of the Los Angeles area. It is bordered by some of the toniest neighborhoods in L.A., including Pacific Palisades, Brentwood, West Los Angeles, Mar Vista, and Venice.
Santa Monica Beach is one of the busiest in the area due to its accessibility, making it popular with locals as well as tourists. The city was incorporated in 1886, and its famous pier—opened in 1909—continues to attract throngs of visitors.
The cost of living in Santa Monica is double that of the rest of the country. The median home value is $1.8 million, and the median household income is about $75,000.
What to Love
The Santa Monica
Pier is a magnet for visitors, with a small amusement park, concession stands, and areas for fishing and watching sunsets.
is a beachside restaurant—popular with celebrities—with a relaxed charm.
People & Lifestyle
Santa Monica is one of the most coveted places to live in Southern California because of its high quality of life. Besides the beach, there is fine dining, shopping, museums, parks, and close proximity to many of Los Angeles’ entertainment and sports attractions.
There’s a pretty good chance you’ll spot a celebrity or two while strolling the downtown streets or dining out. Many celebrities gravitate to Santa Monica due to its charm, quiet neighborhoods, and beachy lifestyle.
Dining, Entertainment & Shopping
There’s a wide variety of dining choices in this vibrant city, from top-rated restaurants to local chains. Many are in the fun area around the Santa Monica Pier.
Other favorite places to grab a bite are the bustling gastropub R & D Kitchen
and Art’s Table
, which has a festive atmosphere for American cuisine.
The Third Street Promenade
—not far from the Santa Monica Pier—is a pedestrian mall esplanade with shops, restaurants, and entertainment.
, a 1939 art deco hotel across from Santa Monica State Beach, is a great place for vacationers.
Things to Do
The Santa Monica Pier
is an absolute must on the list of places to see in the city. While it might be crowded, it’s a lot of fun, and views of the sunset are breathtaking. It’s one of the original amusement piers built in the greater L.A. area. A sign marks the traditional end of the legendary Route 66.
Main Street is a low-key neighborhood of shops and restaurants just two blocks off the beach. Montana Avenue has 150+ distinctive shops and cafes along a tree-lined street that runs from the Pacific Ocean to tony Brentwood.
is a wonderful, 26.4-acre park along a 1.6-mile section of Ocean Avenue. It’s a palm-studded green space with fabulous views of the Pacific Ocean.
The Santa Monica area is home to a number of excellent schools. Top educational opportunities include:
Marquez Charter Elementary School, Prides itself on experiential learning and innovation.
Santa Monica High School, grades 9-12, Diverse curriculum, clubs, and sports
Santa Monica College, Public community college