As far as California beach towns go, Malibu is one of the most famous. Home to Hollywood stars and the rich and famous, this Los Angeles town stretches for over 30 miles along the Pacifc and Highway One.
A lot of first-time visitors to Malibu wonder if this is a place they can even explore. With million dollar beachfront property and huge privacy walls, is there anything for tourists to actually see? The good news is that while Malibus sounds exclusive, it’s perfectly accessible to visitors.
Malibus is home to some of the best beaches and restaurants, so there’s no reason not to explore Malibu for yourself. In this guide, we’ll share the best tips you should know before visiting Malibu.
1. Plan to Visit the Beach
Those oceanfront drives you see so much of in movies and on TV? Those are blocked by private homes. While there are miles and miles of beachfront property here, private homes stand between the highway and the sea for most of those miles. You’ll only see garage doors and fences if you do drive by.
However, don’t let that discourage you from visiting. There are a lot of lovely beaches that are open to the public in Malibu, and they’re as gorgeous as you imagine. For instance, Malibu’s Surfrider Beach located off the pier was named the world’s first surfing reserve. You can check out Point Dume in the north end. As you can see, there’s a lot of beach to be found here if you know where to look.
2. Stay in a Vacation Rental
If you’re planning to stay for a few days, why not live like a local? Finding a vacation rental is easy in Malibu, and this will give you more time to explore the best that this little town has to offer.
There are only a few hotels to stay in the area, and finding a good one can be hard if you’re visiting during a busy time of year. Rentals from Luxury Retreats are far more trustworthy, and you’ll know you’re staying somewhere comfortable.
3. Visit Malibu Country Mart
You’ll quickly realize just how small Malibu is once you’re in town. Unlike what you might think, there’s not an endless list of places to eat and things to do like in other parts of L.A. When in doubt, head to Malibu Country Mart. It’s one of the best shopping centers in Southern California, and you can find so many great places to eat and shop here.
One of the most sought-after places to eat here is Malibu Kitchen. It’s an old-fashioned gourmet market and bakery, and you’ll fall in love with its charm. While you’re there, visit Madison, Gypsy5, or Burro. It’s a great way to explore some local shops.
4. Grab a Meal at Malibu Farm
You haven’t visited Malibu until you’ve been to Malibu farm. This is a full-service restaurant and bar located right on the beach. You can eat at the sit-down restaurant for a glamorous experience or just stop by the local cafe outside.
Enjoying a coffee or tea here in front of the ocean might just be the most Californian thing you can do as a traveler. You’ll feel like a tourist without feeling too touristy.
5. Drive the PCH
The PCH, also known as the Pacific Coast Highway, is the best way to get back to Los Angeles. If possible, drive along the PCH during sunset. You’ll be able to see the Santa Monica Pier glowing at night, not to mention the ocean. It’s the perfect way to end your time in Malibu.
Explore Malibu Like a Local
You might not be able to afford the lavish homes in Malibu, but that doesn’t mean you can’t visit this spectacular town for yourself. With so much gorgeous sights here, it’s no wonder the rich and famous call it home.
If you’re visiting Malibu for the first time, don’t be intimidated by the expensive homes and glamorous restaurants. Just follow these tips, and you’ll fit right in.