After our trip to Palm Springs, we continued north stopping in Los Angeles for a week. Throughout the week, we stayed in a couple of different areas of Los Angeles to get a real feel for the city and Venice Beach was one of our favorite spots in L.A. A lot of that had to due with the walkability factor - not having to hop into a car with little ones in tow in a city that is known for it's heavy traffic was one of the big reasons we loved this area. It was eclectic, with a variety of things to do, and felt like it's own little town despite being in the big city.
WHERE TO STAY
We rented the cutest Airbnb in Venice Beach. The house is located on a quiet, walk-only street and yet is only a block and half from the beach and a short walk to some amazing restaurants and shops. Beautifully decorated and styled, the house was perfect for our family: stocked with snacks for both us and the kids and some great family-friendly board games that kept the boys entertained during our downtime in the evenings.
Kid Firefly (1405 Abbot Kinney Blvd): A modern baby store stocked with unique pieces that both you and your kiddo will be drooling over. The shelves were filled with handmade toys, interesting books, and beautiful pieces of clothing. I would have bought out the entire store if I could have. There were jars of little trinkets where the boys each picked out a little toy to bring home with them.
Gjusta: There isn't a sign on the door or prices listed on the menu and the ordering is a little chaotic, BUT this place is an absolute gem and you can't go wrong eating breakfast or lunch here. 320 Sunset Ave, Venice, CA 90291
Greenleaf Gourmet Chopshop: A casual spot with healthy lunch options, beautiful interior style, and a sunny patio that was not only delicious, but kid-friendly so we didn't feel bad when Gray climbed on the table or Holden dropped a pile of ketchup on the ground.
Salt & Straw: We couldn't walk by and not go in for a scoop. Favorite ice cream store that we've been to in a long, long time.
The Mosaic Tile House: This house, composed completely of mosaic tile pieces, is a must see. Just make sure to make an appointment for a tour so you can go inside the house (we made that mistake and only saw it from the outside...although still amazing).
Heart Wall: Make a quick pit stop for a photo against this bright and colorful wall while strolling down Abbott Kinney.
Venice Beach Boardwalk: Filled with interesting and eclectic people and shops, you can't miss this spot. We walked up and down with the kids, found a store filled with figurines made from scrap metal, a man selling beautiful wind chimes, and listened to a really good singer. Holden even got took a ride on an electric skateboard with a surf instructors that we ran into in the parking lot. When the kids are done with walking, hit the playground in the sand or walk down to the water to relax for a little bit before walking home.
Venice Canals: Fashioned after the Venice Canals in Italy, it's a great place to stroll and let the kids get out some energy. Very serene and a completely different feel from that of the boardwalk.