Hermosa Beach is located in the heart of the South Bay area of Los Angeles. Situated between Manhattan Beach and Redondo Beach, Hermosa is on the southern end of the 22-mile Marvin Braude Bike Trail, aka The Strand. Besides oceanfront biking, there are many activities that make Hermosa a prime beach destination, including beach volleyball, surfing, paddle boarding and sandcastle building. The hub of the action in Hermosa is centered on Pier Avenue, filled with notable restaurants, coastal-cool shops and fun bars. Read our guide to discover all the great places that make Hermosa Beach special.
Gum Tree Shop & Café
Start the morning with a latte and a muffin, pastry or breakfast sandwich at this lovely Australian café and store. The storefront is designed like a little bungalow cottage, with both indoor and outdoor seating. In true Australian fashion, you can find Aussie treats and Vegemite on the menu. The avocado on toast and scrambled egg, tomato and cheddar on a croissant are particularly delicious. After a bite, peruse the store for some great boho-chic finds for the home and unique gifts for friends and loved ones.
Now that you’ve had a satisfying brekkie (as the Australians call it), walk down Pier Avenue to Pier Surf. They have bike rentals, surf gear, beach clothes and they also offer great surfing lessons. Schedule a lesson in the morning to secure some great waves. They provide the board and wetsuit. Even if you’ve never surfed before, not to worry - you’ll be standing on the board by the end of your first surf lesson. After all, you’re at one of L.A.’s best beaches - get out there and learn to surf!
Silvio's Brazilian BBQ
After surfing in the morning, you’ll have surely worked up an appetite. Head to the corner of Pier Avenue, where it intersects with The Strand. Silvio’s Brazilian Beach BBQ is located right on the corner, offering a sunny, sea-side view paired with some of the best barbeque plates, sandwiches, Bahia bowls, Angus burgers and an impressive selection of craft beers. The garlic fries and sweet potato fries are a tasty addition to any order. If you want to dine on the lighter side, their Acai Bowls are the way to go.
Paciugo Gelato & Caffe
After lunch, make your way around the corner to Paciugo Gelato and Caffe for some of the freshest and best gelato in the South Bay. They make their gelato and sorbet on-site and offer 32 of their 300+ flavors daily. Made using traditional Italian recipes and mixing in new flavors, Paciugo (Italian for “messy concoctions”) delights in serving new favorites like Amaretto Black Cherry Swirl, Strawberry Lavender Chocolate Chip, Chocolate Guinness, Chocolate Jalapeno, Rose Sangria and a multitude of traditional flavors. There’s also a full espresso bar, where you can order a latte, tea, or hot chocolate for an extra boost to your day.
With the afternoon ahead of you, make a stop at Hermosa Cyclery. Open daily, Hermosa Cyclery rents beach cruisers, kid’s bikes, tandem bikes, mountain bikes, roller blades or skates, and protective gear. With your wheels of choice, roll on down to The Strand and cruise north - as far as Malibu if you’re adventurous. For those wanting to stay closer, be sure to ride by the famous Tim Kelly Lifeguard Memorial Statue and the volleyball courts lining the length of the beach. Lock up your bikes or skates, then stroll down the Hermosa Beach Pier for a different vantage point.
With a successful beach day behind you, it’s time to enjoy dinner. Mediterraneo Kitchen & Bar, known by locals as The Med, offers a delicious tapas menu in the center of the Pier Avenue Strip. With sangria pitchers and cocktails made with every spirit, their weekly happy hour specials can’t be beat. They also feature Tapas Tuesday and Sangria Sunday. Come with an appetite and enjoy seasonal favorites like spicy black bean hummus, roasted dates wrapped in prosciutto and stuffed with blue cheese, baked goat cheese with grilled eggplant, and savory arancini.
OPTIONAL: Chef Melba’s Bistro
If you’re looking to step away from the bar crowds and lively activity on the pier, walk down a few blocks to Chef Melba’s Bistro for a coastal California meal. This intimate restaurant takes pride in using seasonal and locally sourced farm-fresh ingredients in a setting that is elegant yet beachy-cool. Known for their seafood dishes like Southern ocean butterfish and Pacific Corvina sea bass, their smoked duck and lamb shank are equally as impressive. Be sure to leave room for dessert - Chef Melba’s Signature Dark Chocolate Bag (a dark chocolate shell is filled with passion fruit mousse and mixed berries) and apple cinnamon cobbler will end the meal on a high note.
The Comedy & Magic Club
The evenings are never dull in Hermosa Beach. After dinner, you can walk down Hermosa Avenue to The Comedy and Magic Club for an evening of laughter. With shows nearly every night, you are bound to catch a big-name comic or two. Jay Leno famously performs a set every Sunday night, and it’s quite common to see the likes of Arsenio Hall, Sebastian, John Caparulo and Ian Bagg. Most evenings you can walk in without a reservation, but for big name comics like Bill Maher or Jerry Seinfeld, it’s strongly suggested to buy presale tickets.
Optional: Lighthouse Cafe
If you’re in the mood for live music, the Lighthouse Café is the place to be. Nightly live music shows mainly feature jazz sets, as well as Latin, country and reggae music. The Lighthouse has been in action since 1949 and was one of the top West Coast jazz clubs through much of the 50s, 60s and 70s. The landmark venue is all ages until 8 p.m, and they also offer a family-friendly brunch on the weekends. Grab a nightcap and stay for the evening. Sit on the patio and enjoy the music, the night sea air and great people watching!