There's a small beach in Torrance called "Torrance Beach". This is actually an extension of the bigger beach north of us--Redondo Beach. Torrance Beach is nice because it's got a lot of community feel and it doesn't get as crowded as the other major beaches on sunny days. It's a great place to take the kids and do a little boogie boarding.
The Torrance Farmers Market is a great way to spend a Saturday morning!! They have a vast array of produce stands and breadsmiths. It also has awesome food stands including yummy tacos, falafel, Chinese, Thai and Greek food! The Farmer's market is at Wilson Park so there is plenty of place to throw down a blanket and enjoy your food finds. You can also burn some of those calories at the parks' track, walking trail or athletic courts! There is a great diverse family atmosphere- I love it at this Farmer's Market!
Del Cerro is a great place to go mountain biking, hiking or horse riding. There are beautiful views of the peninsula along the main trail. There are also several smaller trails that offshoot from the main trail which will eventually lead you down to the beach below. This is a great trail for beginning mountain bikers--it's where I learned and there are still several more advanced single track trails for biking (and hiking) along the way. Only a 15 minute drive from Torrance, this is a don't miss spot for active people.
Though not known even to many locals, Torrance does have official beach territory, although sandy is not terribly great for the full beach experience. There is no boardwalk, pier and seaside dining. Torrance beach is good for longboarding along a northern swell, however.
Parking on the street for the beach is about $4 but can be less or free in certain spots no too far away.
Opens 6 am to sunset
Abalone Cove is actually composed of two coves w/ three separate tidepool areas so there is a ton to explore even if all you're doing is going to check out the tidepools. We were there from high to low tide--it's pretty amazing how quickly the water levels change and expose all kinds of stuff in the process. It's maybe a steep 5 mile hike (2 of which is over gravely huge rocks--hiking boots would help here) to the farthest tidepool from the nearest parking lot. The path we took (there are many) was a scenic shortcut to the other side. A decent pair of tennis shoes will get you to the bottom in one piece.
Your standard fare creepy crawlies at the ocean were all there. Starfish, sea anenome, sea slugs, hermit crabs, little fishies. Every inch of the tidepool was filled with color and crawling with life. You could almost hear them all breathing in any quiet spot. I image it's not hard to do since this place was almost devoid of people. A perfectly warm sunny day on a beach and no one in site? God bless! I love a secluded beach.
There are also all kinds of interesting rock formations along the beach. If I were a geology geek, I'd probably have a field day here. There's another trail where you just walk in between two gigantic slab of rock and there are several different layers of--sediment? I dunno. Rock stuff--maybe I'll check it out next time.
We also checked sea caves located in the center of each tidepool area. They were tiny but noisy. The water crashes against it and create a kind of "blow hole" affect on the surrounding rocks w/ big enough crevices in them. It's refreshing by the caves, there's a cool mist and it's almost instantly 5 degrees cooler in the shade than in the sun. This also seems to be a good place for kayaking--we saw a few kayakers out there.
Another note, the best time to visit, if you are only interested in visiting the tidepools is between December and March when the tidepools are most active and during low tide which is generally in the mid to late afternoon.
All right, this tip is for the major mallrats of the world. Mallhaters: be aware!
Del Amo Fashion Center is the biggest enclosed mall, west of the Mall of America and basically puts Torrance in the local and tourist conscience of Southern California.
During my childhood, I used to go often to this mall. Oh, it was the greatest thing in the world to me, outside of pizza and mint ice cream. Now , I just think of it as just another mall , but really huge!
Del Amo is one of the original malls, first opening in the 60s. So, hey, this is a historical trip as far as I see. Hehe...this may tell one something about how history is seen from an American point of view.
There's a nice AMC here with a pub right next to it. Some good eats like Islands. A few shops around. There's a Tillys and across the street is Kohls. I usually come here for the movie theatre or Kohls. Otherwise, I go to the other 2 malls for shopping purposes or even to hang out.
This newly renovated mall will give you the feel of the Block of Orange....well at least half of it will. It used to be one of the biggest of the malls then it started to die down. They renovated half of it to be out doors, although not all the stores outside are open I would say it definitely started bringing back some sort of crowd. In the out door area it has a new AMC, Lucky Strikes, RA Sushi Bar, Lazy Dog Cafe, Metropol, Urban Outfitters, and some other good stuff. Inside is again the usual, Macy's, American Eagle, Aeropostale, etc etc.
You know, it's a mall. It's gots some foods and it's gots some shopping.....no, but really it has a good variety of stores. Some more expensive (or at least what I consider expensive): Ambercrombie, Nordstrom, Planet Funk; your in betweens: Gap, Bath and Body, Macy's, Hot Topic; and your "I think I can afford that": Forever 21, Reflections, EX. The two major restaurants in there are Red Robin and CPK, then it has a pretty large food court. There's also an AMC there.
Don't miss the Roadium if you're a flea market junkie like me.
It runs every day of the week and is always sure to please bargain hunters of every kind.
And if you're hungry, don't miss the eating area under the trees for a super hot dog with grilled onions. YUMMY!