While there’s nothing more thrilling than traveling to a new place for the first time, there is something special about going back to favorite spots. It’s great to experience a place for a second or third time, not so much as a tourist, but as a visitor looking for more local experiences. Los Angeles is one of those places I’ve been several times in my adult life, but each time I go I get to explore a new pocket, a new neighborhood. This trip was all about Redondo Beach, and I think I can safely say it’s one of my favorite parts of LA that I’ve spent time in!
Things To Do in Redondo Beach
So, you’re staying in Redondo Beach at a hotel or Airbnb – what should you do nearby? Here are some ideas if you’re looking to stay local!
Check out the Redondo Beach Pier
While there are many iconic piers in different cities within LA, the Redondo Beach Pier is arguably the most unique. With a plethora of oceanfront restaurants and bars, cool shops, and an expansive marina, you could easily spend an afternoon wandering around the pier.
While wandering around the Pier one morning with my brother (we got coffee at the Redondo Coffee Shop on the pier) we saw a barking sea lion trying to convince fisherman to throw him a snack, a massive pelican that looked like he could swallow a small child, and some first-class people watching.
Hiking trails around LA
There are so, SO many great hiking trails around LA. Before you even take off for your California trip, you should 100% download the app, AllTrails. It’s truly a great app for finding awesome hikes and walks around you, all over the USA and the world. One morning we hiked the George F. Canyon Nature Trail, a relatively easy trek in Palos Verdes. It was gorgeous – with a very clear day we could see downtown LA and the mountains behind it in the distance. Definitely recommend this hike if you’re looking for something to do!
Go Whale Watching with Redondo Beach Whales
This was the perfect activity to enjoy on a visit to LA. I love whale watching and seeing whales and dolphins out in the wild. I lived in Tenerife in the Canary Islands for four months in 2016 working for a whale & dolphin conservation organization, and even though I’ve been dozens of times, it’s always amazing seeing these animals in the wild. Redondo Beach Whale Watching has multiple departure times daily, and tickets cost $35/adults. They have a bar onboard but be sure to bring cash!
If you have a suitable vehicle, of course. This is a little more “out there” of an activity but there are lots of off-road trails for SUVs/capable cars that will lead you to some pretty epic views. We drove from Redondo to Corona and cooked tacos at sunset. It was a really cool activity and nice way to spend some time with my brother. I even threw the drone up to get some cool shots of the overlook and our trusty Toyota’s that took us up the mountain.
Walk to Hermosa Beach
The next neighborhood over from Redondo Beach is Hermosa Beach, and the walk between the two is lined with really cool oceanfront houses, bike paths, and a long stretch of beach. Enjoy a bike ride or a run along the waterfront from Redondo to Hermosa.
Restaurants to Try in Redondo Beach
I found out about this place on Instagram and upon discovering it was less than a mile from my brother’s house, I had to try them. One morning I woke up before everyone else and opted for a walking adventure to fulfill my donut dreams, and Moon Donuts was definitely worth it the walk! They had some really delicious donuts, I think I loved their blueberry cake donut the best, but all of them were super good. We shared the dozen between SEVERAL of us and it was great to cut them up and try a bunch of different ones.
Western City Bagels
Tucked away in an unassuming strip mall (oddly a common thing in LA, am I right?) this bagel shop is a great place to start the morning. They had tons of different bagel and cream cheese options, as well as a ton of different breakfast sandwich specialties that all looked amazing. The staff at Western City Bagels was also super friendly and they did have coffee and other beverages available.
Quality Seafood at Redondo Beach Pier
YUM! This place is a buzzing market full of people buying both seafood to take home and cook as well as their prepared seafood snacks and dishes. We snagged some Micheladas and fish tacos, which were excellent! It’s chaotic but the line moves quickly and you can take your food to eat at one of the outdoor picnic tables on the pier. Just be careful of the bold seagulls who will swoop in to steal loose food!
Captain Kidd’s Fish Market
Another seafood spot right off the pier is Captain Kidd’s! Here you can also take advantage of the fish market and pick up all sorts of seafood fare to take home and cook yourself, or try options off their menu. We split a lobster roll and it was AWESOME! They had a bunch more things I wanted to try but just didn’t have the time. On my next visit I would definitely stop at Captain Kidd’s again.
Redondo Beach Coffee Shop
Start your day at this lovely spot! Enjoy a coffee and churros from this unassuming cafe right on the pier. It’s right near all the fisherman who have their lines dropped in the water off the pier, and there was a huge pelican nearby. It was cheap and the churro was delicious.
Lupita’s Mexican Food
A nice spot in Redondo Beach if you’re looking for some Mexican takeout. I had the enchiladas and the serving size was huge, so check out Lupita’s if you’re in Redondo Beach and want to enjoy a LOT of Mexican food for a reasonable price.
El Tarrasco Mexican Food
El Tarrasco is a local chain but I’d say it’s still worth trying. I really loved my enchiladas, I think I was going through a little phase where that is the only thing I wanted to eat, so I got them again. And sides of beans and rice are always appreciated.
So, while not the normal California itinerary, I hope this post gave you some ideas on different businesses to check out and things to do if you’re staying in the Redondo Beach area. It’s really a lovely part of LA, I was so happy that my brother lives so close to the beach and I could go for a run each day outside. It felt like a small-town neighborhood on the edge of a big city, vibrant and full of life and things to do while still feeling quaint and personal.