Manhattan Beach, California is perhaps one of the most interesting beach towns in the Los Angeles area. The town has surfers riding the waves, a fun pier, and plenty of beach volleyball nets. Paved walkways provide visitors and locals with easy access to the ocean to people watch, soak up the sun, or take a dip in the water. The city is a destination for shopping and dining as well.

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1.Manhattan Beach

Manhattan Beach
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Manhattan Beach, the actual beach, is the city’s main beach. The two-mile stretch of sandy, wide, flat beach begins in the south at 1st Street and stretches to Rosecrans Avenue, where the beach becomes instead El Porto Beach. The popular beach becomes quite busy during the weekends in the summer months, as well as during any beach events and near the Manhattan Pier. Manhattan Beach has nearly one hundred volleyball courts that can be netted up. The vastness of the beach also makes it an ideal place for sunbathing. There are also lifeguard station spaced out throughout the strand of beach.

Manhattan Beach Blvd and The Strand, Manhattan Beach, CA 90266

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2.Manhattan Beach Pier

Manhattan Beach Pier
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Manhattan Beach Pier is an iconic place to photography with its photogenic roundhouse with a red roof near the end of the pier and the steel turquoise-colored railing that run the length of Manhattan Beach Pier. The parking lot is lined with many palm trees that help complete the picturesque scene. The pier has a length of 928 feet, which isn’t that long by the standards of California, however, it has been standing for a long time, dating back to the 1920’s. This makes the Manhattan Beach Pier the west coast’s oldest concrete pier. It was renovated and restored during the 1990’s.

Manhattan Beach Blvd and Ocean Dr, Manhattan Beach, CA 90266

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3.Downtown Manhattan Beach

Downtown Manhattan Beach
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Downtown Manhattan Beach is sometimes to referred to as the “Pearl of the South Bay.” Founded back in the year 1912, the downtown area of the city features chic shopping opportunities, award-winning chefs and restaurants serving delicious, mouth-watering food, and stunning sunsets just steps away from a beach. There are more than 150, retailers in Downtown Manhattan Beach, including art galleries, home furnishing stores, womens’ clothing, mens’ clothing, childrens’ clothing and items, and much more. More than fifty restaurants, coffee shops, cafes, and delis can also be found in the downtown district, offering dining options for everyone.

Manhattan Beach, CA 90266, Phone: 310-379-9901

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4.Roundhouse Marine Studies Lab and Aquarium

Roundhouse Marine Studies Lab and Aquarium
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The Roundhouse Marine Studies Lab and Aquarium at the Manhattan Beach Pier acts as the educational facility for the Oceanographic Teaching Stations. Inside of the facility are both touch tanks and viewing tanks that all display a wide array of marine invertebrates and fish. There is a children’s area as well. From Labor Day until Memorial Day, the Roundhouse Aquarium is open from noon to 5:00pm Monday through Friday, and 10:00am to sunset on Saturday and Sunday. From 2:00pm to 8:00pm Monday through Friday and 9:00am to 8:00pm Saturday and Sunday the rest of the year.

Manhattan Beach Pier, Manhattan Beach, CA 90266, Phone: 310-379-8117

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5.Sand Dune Park

Sand Dune Park
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The Sand Dune Park in Manhattan Beach, California gets its name from the sand dune that stands at one hundred feet high located in the park. This sand dune makes the park a popular place with children of all ages. Switchbacks and steps lead to a nature area, serving as a path providing several ways to reach the summit. The trail meanders through plants offers an educational and interesting nature walk. From the sand dune’s peak, visitors can enjoy panoramic views of the city. The park also contains a small playground for kids with climbing equipment, a merry-go-round, and swings.

3299 Bell Ave, Manhattan Beach, CA 90266, 424-634-2842

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6.Live Oak Park

Live Oak Park
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Live Oak Park is one of the city of Manhattan Beach’s oldest parks. Spread out across nearly nine acres, the park, among other events, is the host of the city’s Old Hometown Fair that takes places in October every year. One of the most cherished play areas for toddlers in the city is also found in the Live Oak Park, along with a play area for older kids. The park also consists of six tennis courts with lights, a lighted basketball court, two lighted large multi-purpose fields, many picnic areas able to accommodate anywhere from twelve to fifty people, and two barbeques.

1901 N Valley Dr, Manhattan Beach, CA 90266, Phone: 310-802-5474

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© AdventurePlex

The mission of AdventurePlex is to make healthier habits more fun with the idea that starting healthy habits at an early age will make those habits last for a lifetime. The AdventurePlex complex was designed for the whole family to learn, grow, and play, created to provide families with a dynamic space to get silly, get physical, and to get healthy. The play facility measures sixteen thousand square feet in size and offers one of the best indoor playgrounds in the area, as well as a place for camps and parties.AdventurePlex offers learning and play opportunities, classes, free wireless internet, and healthy food.

1701 Marine Ave, Manhattan Beach, CA 90266, Phone: 310-546-7708

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8.Manhattan Beach Art Center

Manhattan Beach Art Center
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The Manhattan Beach Art Center is an integral part of the unique community of the city of Manhattan Beach, California.The city’s Cultural Arts Division helps develop and present educational and artistic exhibitions and programs to the community that relate directly to the urban contemporary life of its residents, while also maintaining the highest of standards of ethical, intellectual, and professional responsibility. The center aims to create meaningful connections between artists, visitors, community groups, residents, cultural organizations, and businesses that promote and sustain a creative, diverse, and thriving city. The Manhattan Beach Art Center believes that it is integral to learn about art.

1560 Manhattan Beach Blvd, Manhattan Beach, CA 90266, Phone: 310-802-5440

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9.Riley Arts Gallery

Riley Arts Gallery
© Riley Arts Gallery

The Riley Arts Gallery has been providing both locals and visitors a chance to view a variety of works of art in its beachside location since 1999. The gallery features a mix of art and photo framing, photography, prints, fine art, and gifts, offering a ever changing assortment to meet the requests of customers for quality pieces to match their personal style of decor. The staff knowledgeable about the work of the artists carried at the Riley Arts Gallery. Guests can find beautiful watercolors and oils featuring a coastal living theme, as well as limited edition posters and prints, small gifts, and cards.

1007 Manhattan Ave, Manhattan Beach, CA 90266, Phone: 310-372-3681

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10.Bruce's Beach

Bruce's Beach
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Bruce’s Beach can be found along the coast just southwest of the city of Los Angeles in Manhattan Beach. The beach boasts typically clear skies and sunny weather year-round. The beach area is a popular spot for picnics with its well-maintained lawns overlooking the shore and picturesque setting. Locals also use Bruce’s Beach for other recreational activities, yoga classes, dog walks, and playdates for children. The lawns are just a couple of minutes walk away from the shore. A half-court for basketballs, benches, and several shade trees can also be found on the beach’s three acres of green lawn.

2600 Highland Ave, Manhattan Beach, CA 90266, Phone: 310-802-5410

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11.Two Guns Espresso

Two Guns Espresso
© Two Guns Espresso

Wellington in New Zealand was voted the second best world city for coffee drinking. So, when two New Zealanders (Kiwis) open a coffee shop on Manhattan Beach, it is worth checking it out. This cute, bright shop with communal tables and a large poster of Dirty Harry on the wall brews fabulous espressos on a shiny La Marzocco machine. There also offer brewed-to-order flat whites, an exotic variety of teas, fresh fruit smoothies, and great sandwiches and pastries. If you are expecting something typical New Zealand like whitebait, pavlova, or sausage sizzle, forget it. Just a huge list of perfectly made whole-day breakfast offers and wonderful toasts. Try the brioche French toast with banana, candied pecans, and powdered sugar, soaked in pure maple syrup. There are a few benches outside if you prefer sipping your coffee al fresco.

350 N Sepulveda Blvd, Manhattan Beach, CA 90266, Phone: 310-318-2537

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12.Manhattan Beach Food Tour

Manhattan Beach Food Tour
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The Manhattan Beach Food Tour leads guests through the downtown area of Manhattan Beach for a progressive meal, during which they will taste some of the best dishes the city has to offer at some of the best restaurants. The tour visits several restaurants that showcase an array of cuisines, including Californian, Mediterranean, Seafood, and Mexican. The Manhattan Beach Food Tour also includes a wine tasting, and much more. The food tour is designed for both locals and visitors, offering an opportunity to dine, learn, and explore together during the three hour time period of the culinary journey.

Manhattan Beach, CA, 90266, Phone: 323-763-0224

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13.Nick's Manhattan Beach

Nick's Manhattan Beach
© Nick's Manhattan Beach

Nick’s Manhattan Beach is committed to offering a perfect dining experience through its continuous innovation, executing hospitality standards at an impeccable level, and serving the highest quality of food and drinks. The mission behind the Manhattan Beach location, as well as the other locations of Nick’s restaurants, is to manage the restaurant with a spirit of excellence, committed to being one of the best restaurants in the industry, providing comfortable, relaxed, and friendly restaurants for everyone. Lunch and dinner is served daily at the Nick’s Manhattan Beach restaurant, along with breakfast from eight in the morning until noon on Saturdays and Sundays.

451 Manhattan Beach Blvd, Manhattan Beach, CA 90266, Phone: 310-545-7373

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14.Fishing with Dynamite

Fishing with Dynamite
© Fishing with Dynamite

Fishing with Dynamite is open to the locals and visitors of Manhattan Beach for lunch and dinner everyday of the week. In the dining room is a combination of a cocktail bar, a raw bar, and dining tables for guests. The food menu at the Fishing with Dynamite restaurant is a seasonal menu that often changes with the desire of the restaurant’s head chef. The restaurant has been named by the Los Angeles Magazine as the “Best Oyster Bar” in the area. Fishing with Dynamite, established by Chef David LeFevre, is reflective of the chef’s roots, travels, and culinary touchstones.

1148 Manhattan Ave, Manhattan Beach, CA 90266, Phone: 310-893-6299

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© Simmzy's

Simmzy’s is an open-air, bustling pub that offers an impressive rotating assortment of craft beers, as well as American cuisine that can be categorized as quality pub fare. The pub is a popular place for people to watch the game from one of the large televisions and cheer on their team. While boasting a bit of a laid-back, sports bar atmosphere, Simmzy’s is still a family-friendly restaurant, and can also accommodate large groups rather quickly. During sunny weather, the outdoor patio is open for seating as well. Guests can also make a reservation at Simmzy’s to get a table easier.

229 Manhattan Beach Blvd, Manhattan Beach, CA 90266, Phone: 310-546-1201

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16.Rock'N Fish

Rock'N Fish
© Rock'N Fish

The Rock’N Fish restaurant sits at the bottom of the city’s Manhattan Beach Pier. The eatery provides a welcoming atmosphere, serving a variety of dishes with warm smiles. Rock’N Fish strives to make guests their priority by providing a comfortable atmosphere, generous helpings of food, and impeccable customer service. The restaurant describes their menu as being “American Regional Cuisine,” taking the best of the country’s American dishes and interpreting them in the best way using fresh, local ingredients, such as Kapalua Rib-Eye or Seafood Jambalaya. One of the most popular cocktails available at Rock’N Fish is the Navy Grog rum cocktail.

120 Manhattan Beach Blvd, Manhattan Beach, CA 90266, Phone: 310-379-9900

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17.Manhattan Beach Post

Manhattan Beach Post
© Manhattan Beach Post

Visitors will find an assortment of seasonal food options that have been carefully edited at the Manhattan Beach Post restaurant. These dishes are dishes are divided into categories that include Cheese, Charcuterie, and Sumthin’ Sumthins’; Breads; Meat dishes; Seafood dishes; and Vegetable dishes. All of these, including the house made breads and vegetables, are meant to be dishes standing on their own, not as sides. The restaurant encourages guests to try several items from the menu and to enjoy a variety of new flavors, textures, and ingredients. The beer served is selected to represent stand-out beers from various styles and regions.

1142 Manhattan Ave, Manhattan Beach, CA 90266, Phone: 310-545-5405

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18.Love and Salt

Love and Salt
© Love and Salt

Love and Salt is a rustic 100-seat restaurant in Manhattan Beach that was opened in 2015 by Guy and Sylvie Gabriele, the owners of the South Bay's acclaimed Cafe Pierre. The restaurant, located adjacent to the scenic Manhattan Beach pier, operates with a philosophy emphasizing simple, high-quality ingredients and dishes, serving up delicious Italian-inspired meals with a unique Southern California twist. All items are prepared with locally-sourced meats and produce, including eclectic wood-oven-fired pizzas with toppings such as roasted chanterelle, jalapeno pesto, fried capers, and duck eggs. Wood-fired vegetable dishes are also served, along with rustic pasta dishes and entrees such as grilled Idaho trout, whole Mediterranean branzino, and grilled skirt steak.

317 Manhattan Beach Blvd, Manhattan Beach, CA 90266, Phone: 310-545-5252

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19.One Wave Surf

One Wave Surf
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Founded in 2003, One Wave Surf is the creation of Tyler Trafas, a local of Los Angeles with more than fifteen years of experience in surfing. Since its founding, the surf instruction business has added surf guide services, advanced coaching, surf-oriented yoga classes, and adventure travel to its roster of surfing services. The Surf Experience with One Wave Surf offers an ultimate rush for customers wanting to ride a wave during just one surf lesson. The all-inclusive package includes an hour and thirty minutes of instruction and is a great introduction into surfing for visitors.

Manhattan Beach, CA 90266, Phone: 323-521-9283

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19 Best Things to Do in Manhattan Beach, California