Santa Monica Pier - the most important information

Santa Monica Pier is a large pier in Santa Monica that has a small amusement park, concession stands, and areas for views and fishing. It faces the Pacific Ocean and it symbolizes the heart of Santa Monica.

About Santa Monica Pier
There had been several piers in Santa Monica before the construction of the current one in 1909. It is made up of two adjoining piers, the Pleasure Pier and the Newcomb Pier. Many facilities, such as a carousel, La Monica Ballroom, and the amusement park were built, but over one-third of the Pier got destroyed in the storm in 1982 and 1983. The Pacific Park that is at the Pier today was opened in 1996, and there are food stands, street performers, and artists. Over 4 million tourists visit the Pier every year. The Santa Monica Pier shows up in popular culture, in books, songs, films, television, video games, and music videos. You might have seen it in the movie Bean from 1997, or the series NCIS: Los Angeles. Here are some other interesting facts about Santa Monica Pier:
  • The Santa Monica Pier is over 100 years old.
  • There is a legend that Elzie Crisler Segar, the author of the Popeye comic, met Olaf Olsen, a Norwegian sailor and the real-life inspiration for his comic book character Popeye, on the Santa Monica Pier.
  • The Ferris wheel at Pacific Park was the first solar-power Ferris wheel.
  • La Monica Ballroom that was opened on the pier in 1924 was the largest ballroom in America at that time.
  • Hot Dog on a Stick has been sold on the Santa Monica Pier since 1946.
What to see at the Santa Monica Pier?
Here are some of the things you can see at the Pier, apart from the great water views:
  • Pacific Park - this amusement park is great for families. It has a solar-paneled Ferris wheel that is brightly lit. Some other rides that you can go on are the Simulator Thrill ride, Rollercoaster, and Sea Dragon.
  • Heal the Bay Aquarium - this aquarium is located beneath the Santa Monica Pier and it was opened in 1996. It is open to the general public and offers educational programs, activities, and special events dedicated to marine conservation, pollution prevention, and environmental education.
  • The Merry-Go-Round - this is an original carousel hippodrome from the 1920s.
  • The video arcade - an excellent place for children who can enjoy the video games by the water.
Tickets and opening hours of the Santa Monica Pier
  • Tickets - access to the pier itself is free. Tickets for the aquarium are 5 dollars for adults and children over 13, while entry is free for children under 12. Rides at Pacific Park cost between 5 and 10 dollars each.
  • Opening hours - the Pier is open daily from 6 am to 10 pm.
How to get to the Santa Monica Pier?
You can get to the Pier by:
  • Train - The Metro Expo Line goes from 7th/Metro Center in Downtown Los Angeles to the Downtown Santa Monica Station. From there you can get to the Pier if you head west on Colorado Avenue, cross over Ocean Ave, and walk down the Pier bridge.
  • Bus - Bus 8 goes to the Pier, the stop is at Ocean and Colorado.
What should you know before visiting the Santa Monica Pier?
Here are some things you should know before visiting the Santa Monica Pier:
  • Fishing is allowed.
  • Dogs are allowed on leash on the Pier, but not on the beach.
  • Smoking is forbidden.