Los Angeles Section 7

Manhattan Beach Pier to Torrance County Beach

Los Angeles Section 7

Manhattan Beach Pier to Torrance County Beach

The CCT traverses the shorelines of the three similar yet distinctive beach towns of Manhattan Beach, Hermosa Beach, and Redondo Beach. This section takes you on a straightforward route either along the busy bike path, full of bikes and inline skaters, or the more peaceful stroll among the tanned sun worshipers down by the water. Consider visiting the pier in each town for an entertaining side trip. The Manhattan Beach Pier has a small aquarium. The route also takes you along the street for a short distance around King Harbor in Redondo Beach.
If you want to check out the mostly residential Manhattan Beach's bustling small town atmosphere, walk two or three blocks east to Manhattan Avenue and Highland Avenue.

From the pier walk down the pleasant beach along the tideline, unless you prefer following the South Bay Bicycle Trail. Beach volleyball courts lie along the top of the beach for much of the way to Hermosa Beach.

At 1⅝ miles you arrive at the Hermosa Beach Pier. The town center is similar a to its neighbor, a busy small-town core with a laid back and comfortable ambiance just off the beach up Pier Avenue. Continue down the spacious strand. It gets even broader as you head south from Hermosa Beach Pier.

The beach ends abruptly at the north end of the ersatz King Harbor at 2¼ miles. Take a short jog inland on the bike path to Herondo Street, watching for bikes on the blind corner. Then turn right and follow the sidewalk along Harbor Drive. At 3 miles Harbor Drive ends at Plaza Park. The bike path goes through the park and parking garage, but pedestrians can find their way through the horseshoe shaped Redondo Municipal Pier area with its shops, restaurants, and fishing pier. You emerge from this complex into Veteran's Park at 3⅜ miles. Walk from there onto the beach or bike path.

Along the sandy tideline you follow beach all the way to Torrance. You first pass high-rise apartment buildings lining the beach, then continue on the sandy expanse of steeply sloping Redondo State Beach. After passing public restrooms at 4¾ miles, you come to Torrance County Beach although you can't tell because it's unmarked. The city of Torrance's short ¾ mile stretch of beach doesn't qualify it as a beach town like the others in these parts because the hub of the city actually lies several miles inland. Follow the beach at the base of undeveloped bluffs to section's end at 5½ miles. It's also the south end of the South Bay Bicycle Trail, where it angles up the steep sloping bluff to a parking lot near the corner of Paseo de la Playa and Riviera Street.

SUGGESTED ROUND TRIPS AND LOOPS: Stroll along the beach between any of the three piers on this route. Exploring the piers and the three beach towns offers several opportunities of varying length.

Distance: 5½ miles (8.9 kilometers).

Open to: Hikers. Bicyclists on paved bike path.

Surface: Beach, paved bike path.

Access point: Manhattan Beach Pier.

How to get there: From the San Diego Freeway (I-405) or Highway 1, turn west on Manhattan Beach Blvd. and drive to its end at the foot of Manhattan Beach Pier, two blocks from Manhattan Avenue.

Other access: Many accessways along the route including Manhattan Avenue, Hermosa Avenue, Harbor Drive, Esplanade, and various streets in Torrance.

Difficulty: Easy

Elevation gain/loss: Negligible.


Further information: All of the beaches on this route are served by the Los Angeles County Lifeguard Service, Southern Section (310)832-1179.

Facilities: You can find everything all along the bike path, including bike and skate rental shops.

Campgrounds: See Section 6.

Lodging: Lodgings of all kinds are abundant in the area. Santa Monica Hostel (310)393-9913 is a few blocks from the Santa Monica Pier. Venice has the Hostel California (310)305-0250 about 15 minutes walk from the beach. The small Marina Hostel (310)301-3983 is in Marina del Rey.

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