Adventure / Blog / North America / Travel

Beach Review: Malibu, California (Zuma Beach)

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In Malibu.

As a big fan of the ocean, I’ve felt extremely lucky to visit some of California’s best beaches this August. Recently, I made several trips to Orange County’s well-known Laguna Beach, which is the closest beach to where I’ve been staying here in Southern California. As I mentioned in my previous post, Laguna Beach is very much a family beach designed to attract foodies who want a view with their meal. It’s the perfect place to stroll through as there’s a boardwalk, and as such, usually has visitors and locals alike.

This past weekend, I was fortunate enough to visit a very different type of beach. My cousin, a Californian resident, showed me around Malibu. Though the name ‘Malibu’ had always been familiar to me, I never gave the city much thought. Upon my visit, I realized why it’s recognized as one of Los Angeles’ nicest areas to live in. The ‘beach city’, as it’s called, is home to some beautiful and unique homes. Some celebrities are known to have homes here, although they aren’t its only locals. As someone who doesn’t really get star-struck, that aspect of Malibu didn’t appeal to me. However, the city’s beauty is undeniable. There are homes along the road – on the beach, meaning locals are technically entitled to a piece of their sandy backyards – as well as stunning mansions on one of Malibu’s many steep hills. The designs of these homes are anything but cookie-cutter, with each one representing a completely design from the next.

Most of all, Malibu’s coast is incredible. There are several different beaches within the region, including hard-to-find secluded spots that require a hike down a hill. Some of these areas offer little parking, meaning that they don’t attract as many visitors. On the other hand, beaches like Zuma Beach – where I went to – are more accommodating to those who want to have a typical beach day.

At Zuma Beach, my cousin and I found a relatively empty spot right in front of the open waters. I was amazed that we were able to find a not-so-crowded place to sit, considering the beach’s beauty and how busy Los Angeles usually is. It was a pleasant surprise, though, that certainly made up for the amount of traffic we had to deal with to experience it! While locals often tell me about how they don’t like to swim in the Pacific’s icy waters, I found it to be more than tolerable. Perhaps that’s because I grew up swimming in the Great Lakes; either way, claims of the Pacific Ocean (in this region) being unbearable are a little far-fetched, in my opinion. In any case, it’s great news for those of us who like to swim!

For anyone visiting the Los Angeles area, I would definitely recommend a visit to Malibu and one of its breathtaking coastal hang-outs. Although you can find upscale restaurants along its coast, the best thing about the area is that it’s not too difficult to find some emptier land untouched by the artificial side of life. Considering this is a city not too far from Hollywood, which is nicknamed ‘Tinseltown’, that’s an incredible feat.

More photos of Malibu:

IMG-20140818-WA0015 IMG-20140818-WA0014 2014-08-16 14.45.33 2014-08-16 14.45.28

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5 thoughts on “Beach Review: Malibu, California (Zuma Beach)

  1. What do you think about people owning private access to the beaches? I’m not a fan. On my first roadtrip across the US, I made it all the way to Malibu only to find out that I couldn’t make it down to the water because it was fenced off in someone’s backyard!

    Anyway, I came across your blog through the big blog exchange contest. I voted for your blog in the #bigblogx competition, and I hope you can return the favor: http://www.bigblogexchange.org/profile/2014/5751399832879104 Thanks!

    Reach out to me and follow on Twitter @travelogueblog or check out my own travel blog for travel tips, stories, and adventure ideas: http://www.travelogueblog.net

    Thanks again and happy travels.

    • Thanks for your vote and comment! I really like your blog’s layout – voted for it! Definitely going to read through it.

      Personally, I believe land ownership in general is a funny concept (although a completely justified one given our political structure). However, Malibu does have enough public beaches (as well as “private” – pay-to-enter – ones). They aren’t cramped in terms of size, either, so I believe Malibu’s set-up is acceptable. If you do end up in a residential part of the city, you just need to trek down a bit further (whether that’s towards Santa Monica or towards Santa Barbara). The beaches also seem to be cleaner and less busy as a result, so there are definitely some upsides to it. I think there’s a reason why Malibu isn’t known as a touristy area despite how well-known it is – it’s just not as easily accessible. Beaches further down the coast are better for that, but I do think Malibu’s beaches are generally beautiful!

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