Baby-Friendly Travel Guide to Santa Monica

My husband and I have always dreamed of living in Los Angeles, we have a lot of family in Southern California and we visit often. Santa Monica is one of our top areas in LA to explore, and since having Scout we’ve realized it’s a great option for vacationing with a baby.

The beaches of Santa Monica are the hub of tourism and lots of families travel towards them to have some quality R&R. Santa Monica is a haven for trendy restaurants, boutique shops and of course the promenade and pier. Read on to see our top 10 spots where we love to take Scout.

Baby Stroller Friendly Spots is the Name of the Game

After you become a parent your life will never be the same, and your trips will never be the same either. Having a lightweight and compact baby stroller is a must if your journey involves lots of sightseeing on foot. We have the Maxi-Cosi Zelia 5-in-1 Modular Travel System and we love it! I chose it because it’s one of the lightest on the market and the carseat fits right into the stroller. It folds down to a compact size for loading into the car and for tighter public spaces. Scout sits very comfortable in this strollers and she can easily take a nap on the go. Also, make sure your stroller has a shade cover for baby.

Choosing the Right Hotel Accommodations

When traveling with young children, you’re likely to be spending a lot of time inside your hotel room. Babies need a quiet and private place for nap time, to feed and get a rest from high sensory areas.

When planning a trip, I love to find a hotel that is the perfect combo of style and comfort. Scroll below to see my complete guide to the best baby-friendly Santa Monica hotels.

Venice Beach

This famous beach and surrounding area is definitely a popular tourist spot. If you’ve never been before, I highly recommend you walk through it at least once. It’s the quintessential Southern California experience with surfers, skaters and sunshine beaches. It’s not always the calmest area for a baby, but my daughter actually really likes observing all the hustle and bustle. There’s a very long paved promenade that connects Santa Monica Pier to Venice Beach and the walking path is stroller friendly. A word of advice, keep your belongings close and insight at all times. Pickpockets have been known to patrol this area.

Main Street, Santa Monica

One of my favorite walks to window shop is down Main Street in Santa Monica. For coffee we like to stop at Blue Bottle, for a fresh cold-pressed juice I love Pressed Juicery, and Thai Vegan for good eats (I’m obsessed with Thai food!). There’s many more dinning and beverage options to suit everyone’s taste.

Santa Monica State Beach

We know that a visit to Santa Monica Beach is already on your list, because no trip to this city is complete without spending some quality time beach time. It’s got a 3-mile long sandy shore where you can build sandcastles and splash in the ocean. There is also a 5.2-mile long bike path for those who enjoy cycling and long stroller walks.

Pacific Park on the Santa Monica Pier

It is another excellent amusement park located on the Santa Monica Pier. At Pacific Park, you can play a lot of games and enjoy amazing rides with your family. This park contains the only ferris wheel in the world that is powered by solar energy. You can find many attractions on Santa Monica Pier apart from the beach like special seasonal activities, historic carousel and an arcade.

Mommy advice, I would avoid the middle of the day in this area and wait until the sun starts going down. I got a terrible sunburn in this area one summer because there isn’t much shade. You obviously can’t ride rollercoasters with a baby, but it’s still a nice evening walk for parents.

Santa Monica Aquarium

We highly recommend you to visit Santa Monica Aquarium while visiting Santa Monica Pier. Your kids will definitely love it. It inhabits more than 100 species of marine animals and many events are held each day for your entertainment. Adults and children over 12 need to buy tickets to visit, but all kids under 12 are free to admit without any ticket. The Aquarium is closed on Monday.

3rd Street Promenade

This trendy and popular shopping area doesn’t allow vehicles, so you can easily stroll around while you enjoy the sights. You will find all kind of local shops as well as big brand stores in this area. There are movie theaters, shops and restaurants on the Promenade Street. Happening every Wednesday and Saturday there’s a local farmer’s market on Arizona Avenue.

Abbot Kinney Boulevard

This very trendy neighborhood is another great area to explore with a baby stroller. The main strip stretches about a mile and is filled with those SoCal palm trees. Many favorite LA brands have set up shop here, and I’m sure there will be new ones to discover. You can find ice cream, donuts, tacos and many colorful murals.

Tongva Park

This park is perfect for families with multiple children who vary in ages. The beautifully designed modern park makes for a great place to stroll with baby and allows a safe place for older kids to play. There’s so many visually appealing public art installations which are meant to be interactive for the kiddos to play on.

Santa Monica Murals

I always love a good photo opportunity and Santa Monica has so many fun colorful public walls and murals. These pops of color scattered throughout the city really enhance your traveling experience because they always lift my mood. All the photos of murals you see in this blog post we stumbled across during our stroller walks.

Museum of Flying

If you’ve got a super young infant, this spot is a good one for the adults. Aviation enthusiasts and Insagrammers alike will enjoy the vintage vibes, bright lighting and clean aesthetics of the Museum of Flying. Here you’ll find aviation related art, replica of Wright Flyer, Douglas Aircraft Company artifacts, a flight simulator and much more.

Santa Monica Public Library

It’s another fun place for kids, teens and adults. You will find many family friendly resources in this library. You will find different programs like story times and puppet show while visiting this library. The main branch also had a Bookmark Café which offers, breakfast, sandwiches, salads, beverages and much more.

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Check out these stylish Santa Monica hotels:

Explore these Santa Monica tours and adventures:

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Santa Monica is one of the best neighborhoods to explore by bike with its colorful characters, sights and sounds. Since it's also an artistic and creative area of LA, this tour seizes the opportunity to introduce you to legal graffiti street galleries and the best of the local sculpture and architecture.

Clocking in at nearly three hours long, this two-wheeled adventure will leave your legs a bit more toned and your stomach ready for lunch.

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Catch your first wave — or perfect your turns — with a surf lesson at legendary Santa Monica Beach. On your 1.5 hour adventure, join your professional instructor at the water's edge. Practice basic skills like paddling out, reading waves and popping up, or work on improving your surfing with an instructor that’s matched to your experience level.

Take in views of the California coast from beyond the breakers, watch for dolphins and porpoises that play in the waves, and enjoy the convenience of this all-inclusive surfing experience.


Watch for whales and dolphins off Newport Beach aboard a double-decker catamaran with bow seating and 360-degree views.

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See the best of Los Angeles with a 6-hour tour of the city’s most glamorous neighborhoods and iconic landmarks.

Learn where to eat, shop and party as you explore L.A. with a professional guide, from Hollywood Boulevard’s star-studded sidewalks to gleaming downtown skyscrapers.

Snap a selfie with the Hollywood sign, spot celebrity homes in Beverly Hills, and watch an elegant crowd browse Rodeo Drive’s exclusive boutiques.

Cruise the renowned Sunset Strip before hitting the Pacific Coast Highway to sink your toes into L.A.’s most beloved beaches.

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Experience the best of Los Angeles on a 6-hour private tour with a personal guide, and explore the city in a vehicle that seats up to 15 guests.

Get an insider’s glimpse of Tinseltown as you stroll the Hollywood Walk of Fame, watch for celebrities as you tour Rodeo Drive and the city's exclusive neighborhoods, then take in views of the Hollywood sign and towering downtown skyscrapers.

Enjoy the ultimate L.A. experience, and enjoy the convenience of a personal tour that begins and ends at your hotel or private residence.