Located west of downtown Los Angeles, the coastal city of Santa Monica has a lot in store. Perfect for family holidays, Santa Monica is where you need to be this summer to experience beautiful weather, exciting adventures, and lots of cool, fun stuff — much more than the beach and the Santa Monica Pier that is sure to make Santa Monica one of the most enjoyable trips of this year. By Shubhanjana Das

1. Santa Monica Pier

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First things first, the Santa Monica Pier epitomises the global image that Santa Monica has to visitors and tourists. Home to the Santa Monica Pacific Park overlooking the ocean, there is a giant Ferris Wheel, a small roller coaster, the New York Trapeze School, and the Santa Monica Pier Museum. The food court is amazing and so are the summer concerts often held on the extended southern part of the pier.

2. Third Street Promenade

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The real Santa Monican life may not always be found at pier or the beach but at LA’s favourite pedestrian shopping zone, Third Street Promenade. Stretching three blocks from Broadway at Santa Monica Place to Wilshire Blvd, the streets are lined with restaurants and shopping centres while street musicians serenade the visitors to the most soulful and upbeat tunes.

3. Santa Monica Beach

On days that the locals don’t feel like doing anything and give it to the place’s rustic charm, you will find the beach to be dotted with people picnicking, chilling under the sun, hanging out with friends, and what not. The beach is the absolute gem of Santa Monica and defines the place in more ways than one. Given that the beach runs all along the length of Santa Monica, you can find quieter patches away from the pier where you can enjoy a book and a few sandwiches all by yourself.

4. Palisades Park

Santa Monica boasts of views of both the ocean and the mountains and Palisades Park is the place to view both. Living up to the image in everyone’s head of the LA coastline, Palisades Park is where your picture postcards from Santa Monica should be.

5. Santa Monica Farmers’ Market

Filling in Arizona Avenue on Wednesdays, the Santa Monica Farmer’s Market is a must-visit if you wish to witness where the amazing fresh food supplies come from. The place is bustling with locals and we say it is better than a bar if you want to strike up a conversation with the locals.

6. Tongva Park

Santa Monica has transformed a quotidian concrete parking space into an idyllic parkland dotted with playground, waterfalls, walking paths, meadows and a mesmerising view of the Pacific through a conch-like wired structure. Moreover, Iñigo Manglano-Ovalle’s Weather Field No.1 further makes this park an absolutely unmissable spot.

Related: Beach Lovers Pay Attention: 2019 Will Be All About Exploring LA’s Laid-Back, Bohemian Vibe!