The drive to Malibu, just north of Santa Monica along the Pacific Coast Highway (PCH) is famous equally for its traffic jams and stunning ocean views. Home to many celebrity residents attracted to the beauty of its beautiful beaches and mountain scenery, Malibu still retains a low-key vibe of sun, sand and surf. Here are Daytripper’s highlights of an ideal day enjoying the Californian lifestyle at its best.
Check in to the brand new Nobu Ryokan Malibu Hotel, transformed from a 1950’s beach hotel, the first in a new line of exclusive (and very expensive) retreats from the Nobu Hospitality Group. Right next door to the Nobu restaurant on Carbon Beach, the 16-room modern hideaway is designed in traditional Japanese style with a lap pool overlooking the Pacific, fitness room, and access to Malibu Racquet club. Opening at the end of April it looks dreamy, but very expensive.
Explore the arts and culture of ancient Rome and Greece at the Getty Villa, just east of Malibu in Pacific Palisades.
Want to catch some waves instead of just watching? Take a lesson, or just rent a board at Malibu Surf Shack.
Eat: Start your day with an early lunch at Nobu, one of the world’s most scenic restaurants. Everyone we’ve brought to Nobu is equally in awe at the setting, as we were at our first visit. You may have a Nobu back home, but does it have a patio overlooking the Pacific where the waves crashing below are the restaurants soundtrack? The food is consistently excellent and the place is perennially packed, so make a reservation well in advance. Nobu can’t guarantee a table outside, but with an early reservation there won’t be an issue.
Scenic Stroll: After lunch walk over to the historic Malibu Pier, this iconic landmark is a great vantage point of sun, sand and surfers below. The pier is home to Malibu Farms, another foodie hot spot. For more about Malibu Farms and an interview with its owner Helene Henderson click here.
Shop: Just down the road from the pier, shop in style at the Malibu Country Mart, a large out door mall with boutique stores, restaurants, art galleries, and a sweet playground for the kids. It’s a neighborhood hangout, serving as a community town square and a popular spot for locals and tourists alike.
Beach Time: Malibu is famous for its beautiful beaches, many of which are within sight as you drive down the PCH. Zuma, the largest beach in Malibu is one of our favorites. There’s plenty of parking, bathroom facilities and you can walk down the beach to Point Dume. El Matador State Beach, offers dramatic scenery with sea caves and large rock formations at the base of Malibu’s sandstone cliffs-bring your camera!
Hikes: There’s more than just beaches in Malibu with some of the best hiking Los Angeles has to offer. The many hiking trails boast magnificent views and ideal ocean breezes. Some of our favorite hikes include: Solstice Canyon, Sycamore Canyon, Escondido Canyon and Falls, Point Dume and Corral Canyon. For a quick and easy hike, locals head to Los Liones Canyon, in neighboring Pacific Palisades, the trail weaves through a lush canyon with beautiful views of the Pacific at the top. For those eager for more of a workout continue on the fire road to Parker Mesa Overlook.