Where It's Always Carnival!
Welcome to the Venice boardwalk, also known as the Venice Ocean Front walk. A unique experience that has to be on your list of Los Angeles attractions. It's like one giant continuing block party. Be warned though it's not for the feint of heart! ;-)
The Venice boardwalk may be packed full of restaurants, novelty shops, murals and a ton more, but the main attraction has got to be the people. You will be hard pressed to find a more varied mix of people anywhere!
And that's the most fun part of the Venice boardwalk!
Tourists, homeless people, street performers, fortune tellers, prophets, hippies and more all mingle to create the singular vibe that makes Venice so special.
The main bulk of the boardwalk (Ocean Front walk) is between Rose and Washington and can actually be a pretty decent walk. Especially if you're working your way through the throngs of people that come out at peak times like summer weekends. Check out a map of the Venice boardwalk.
Shops and Vendors
Aside from people watching, the Venice boardwalk is a great place to shop for a variety of things, from touristy stuff to art works. Here's a list of what you can find at the various shops and vendors:
- Novelty T-shirts – This is the mecca of the humorous t-shirt. You can spend the entire day just checking these out!
- Jewelry – From hippie style bead necklaces to punk silver studded bracelets.
- Art – Many of the vendors on the Venice boardwalk are artists selling their creations.
- Tattoos – There are several tattoo parlour along the boardwalk.
- Bags – A ton of knock off designer bags and purses.
- Glass Work – There are a number of shops selling glass products.
- Sunglasses – Both cheap knockoffs and more expensive designers stores.
- Yoga – Yoga by the beach.
- Medical Marijuana – The Kush doctor is in.
On the weekend especially, the Boardwalk is the place in greater Los Angeles for street entertainment. You can expect to find:
- Fortune Tellers (Could be considered a vendor ) ;-)
The Sidewalk Cafe
One of the best and most comfortable places to people watch on the Ocean Front Walk. Settle down on the patio and enjoy the sun. The food is pretty standard burger and sandwich fare. Breakfast served all day.
Great food and a great location right on the boardwalk. Great Ahi tuna and salmon sandwiches! Check out their site.
There are also plenty of vendors selling things like popcorn, cotton candy, chicken wings, frozen yogurt, frozen lemonade and other carnival food.
- Basketball – “White Men Can't Jump” was based on the pick up games that happen at these famous courts. In fact, the courts were used to film some of the basketball scenes in the film. To this day the courts see a very high level of game.
- Paddle Tennis – You can find the paddle tennis courts right on the Venice boardwalk near the basketball courts. Similar to tennis but on a smaller scale and played with solid racquets and a depressurized ball, paddle tennis is a fun, fast paced game. Check it out!
- Handball – Inside the Venice recreation center, a little west of the basketball courts, you can check out some of the highest level handball games in greater Los Angeles.
Muscle Beach Venice took over duties from the original Muscle beach in Santa Monica in 1959. Since then it has seen the likes of Arnold Schwarzenegger pumping iron under the bright Venice sun to crowds of onlookers. People still head down to the boardwalk to check out the bodybuilders and wannabees pump up. In fact they still hold body building competitions drawing large crowds. You can even compete yourself!
Check out their website for competition schedules.
Check out this map of the Venice Boardwalk!
Return to the Venice hub page
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