The Friday of Labor Day weekend was a blue moon — the second full moon in August — and I celebrated with friends by staking out a claim on one of the many fire pits at Dockweiler Beach. We started the fire just after 7PM, so it was going nicely by sunset, around 7:30. Shortly after, the moon rose over the hills just east of the beach and we were treated to the visual feast of a beautiful orange sky to the west that transitioned to indigo to the east, and the full moon hanging just above the horizon.
The beach is at the west end of the Los Angeles Airport, so you get planes taking off over you every five to 10 minutes. My four year old found this exciting, until he decided that playing in the waves was more fun.
Dockweiler Beach is the only beach in Los Angeles county that has fire pits, or where bonfires are allowed, and one of the few in California. A full list can be found at Beach California.
The fire pits are well spaced, in two rows, one closer to the water (these go first), and one closer to the parking lots. We had someone stake our claim at 10AM on a Friday, and she said there were still ocean-side pits available at 2 or 3 in the afternoon.
Bring your own firewood. You cannot buy firewood at the beach. Expect to go through 10 or more logs per hour.
Parking was $8 on Friday, but I hear it gets up to $10 some days.
Manhattan beach is one of the nicest neighbourhoods in Los Angeles and as one can hear in the name it´s by the beach where they have a very lively scene with a nice old pier and lot´s of volleyball courts.
Manhattan beach has a lot of nice cafes, bars and restaurants and it´s a very cosy neighbourhood to walk around.
Manhattan beach is also just 10 minutes drive from the airport, so if you have a layover there then you might consider popping down to Manhattan beach instead of sitting at the airport waiting.
Stroll along the beach or take a walk on the scenic 928-foot long pier at the end of Manhattan Beach Boulevard.
Manhattan Beach is also one of the premiere surf spots in Southern California.
If shopping is in your agenda ... there're plenty of boutique shops along Highland & Manhattan Avenues.
p/s: Fishing is allowed on the pier.
If you are around the 1st weekend of August around Manhatan Beach try to join the Vt team at their Annual Weekend meeting ....
we did it and we did not regret it :P ...
But also a great pier and beach
You must get to Manhattan Beach and watch the sun go down behind the pier. It disappears behind the hills towards Malibu and is just the most beautiful sight. I was captivated by the pier and it's form and beauty.
Manhattan Beach is a fun, sunny, happy place, so spend a day there. Find a nice little place to eat then wander down to the beach to catch the sunset.
I cannot think of a better way to spend a day. Or longer if you have the luxury!
The Strand is a pedestrian path that follows the sandy shore of Manhattan Beach (and neighboring beach towns as well). It is lined with houses that are anything from beach bungalows to outright mansions. The village of Manhattan Beach has lovely shops and restaurants, is clean, and literally sparkles when the sun shines. It has a real resort feel! Quite a relief in the middle of a city as congested as Los Angeles!
Manhattan Beach. Quite a place - packed full of people and interesting restaurants and bars alongside, with perhaps an evangelist preaching next to an atheist fur activist, you never know. Interesting place. Good for rollerblading!