Pour yourself a beverage, find a comfy spot and join me as I wander the streets of Santa Monica.
The Santa Monica Pier
I left my airbnb bright and early to walk to Cora's Coffee Shop for breakfast. It's a nostalgic spot where I could sit outside and the breakfast was spot on delicious. They source most of their ingredients from the Santa Monica Farmer's Market so you can't get more local than that.
Santa Monica is somewhat spread out so I decided my best option would be to rent one of the bikes from the city bike share program, SoBi (social bikes). There was a bike station near the Santa Monica Pier so I set off in search of wheels. I easily downloaded the app, chose a bike and I was on my way.
My starting point was the bike trail at Palisades Park. The park runs along the coastal bluffs of Ocean Avenue providing scenic views overlooking the Pacific Ocean.
Once I came to the end of the 26 acre park, I veered up the hill onto San Vicente Blvd to try to hunt down the top of the Santa Monica Stairs. The 170 wooden stairs descend 111 feet down the Santa Monica Canyon. Many locals use the stairs as a workout and after having climbed them myself, I can vouch for this. It was a workout! It also has an amazing view.
After hours of biking, I was ready to find a tea shop to rest my aching bum. As I biked along the side streets, I admired the beautiful homes, especially those from the arts and crafts era. Something else that made my heart sing, those streets lined with Indian Laurel Fig trees. They provide a gorgeous canopy which is so inviting and a few times, I had to stop my bike to behold these majestic trees.
I chose to stop at Funnel Mill Rare Coffee and Tea. They believe in the art of serving and drinking tea and boast of serving "the most flavorful, perfect cup of tea possible". Now that is a bold statement and as I am a mutual tea lover, visiting this shop was a must! I have to admit that it was a flavorful cup of tea brewed to perfection.
I had a lovely day wandering the streets of Santa Monica, and the day would not be complete if I didn't end it with the warm glow of a California sunset. My airbnb was only four blocks from the ocean so once again I set off. And oh, what a night cap!