Students at the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA have a wealth of sights to see and activities to choose on days off. Sometimes it's nice to head to the beach, walk on a pier to clear the mind or go fishing on days off. So what are the best Los Angeles piers to visit? Here are five Los Angeles piers worth checking out.
Santa Monica Pier
The most famous pier in the area, with its iconic Ferris wheel, the Santa Monica Pier is an all-day (and late-evening) adventure. Spend the day on the beach, and then head up to Pier Burger for a snack. In addition to views of the beach and surfers from the edge of the pier, try seeing the sights from the top of the Ferris wheel. Pacific Park has many other rides as well, plus a historic carousel. Visit the aquarium located underneath the carousel building. The fun continues into the evening, when everything lights up. It's easy to spend all day and late into the evening at the pier — just be warned that it doesn't come cheap.
Venice Fishing Pier
There's less to do at the pier itself, but Venice Beach has interesting shops along the boardwalk, plus restaurants and bars open into the evening. Head down the 700-foot pier at the end of the day to see a beautiful sunset. Visitors can fish all day at the pier without a license. Drop a line or watch others.
As the largest "endless" pier on the California Coast, Redondo Pier has been undergoing a renovation project and features restaurants, bars and shopping. Visitors can also fish along the boardwalk and see beautiful views. The nearby boardwalk and marina offer more entertainment, along with harbor cruises, kayak rentals and paddleboat rentals. Stay late into the evening for live music at one of the venues.
Manhattan Beach Pier
For students looking to break away from the rigors of medical school, this quiet pier offers a relaxing spot to watch the waves or the surfers. Visit the Roundhouse Aquarium with many hands-on exhibits located at the end of the pier. The aquarium is free, with a suggested donation of a couple of dollars. Take a bike ride along the boardwalk, relax on the beach or spend the day shopping and dining in downtown Manhattan Beach.
Hermosa Beach Pier
Looking to get away from the bustle of LA and skip the touristy sites? Hermosa Beach is less crowded with a more local feel. Walk or bike The Strand along the beach for those feeling more active. End the day with a walk down the pier, recently featured in the movie "La La Land," at sunset, then head into town for a drink or dinner.
Visiting Los Angeles piers is a great way to escape when needed. These five are just the beginning.
By Patricia Chaney