California Beaches – Malibu & Venice

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And you thought I was done talking about California… Nope!

If you are having trouble following our trip out-of-order, Pulp Fiction-style, know that I’ll be listing the links to each post in chronological order before the end of the week.

~

After leaving Beverly Hills, our check-in time to our lodging in Temecula wasn’t until 4pm, so my plan was to hit a few beaches before we left L.A.

First, you must know that neither Rob nor I are beach bunnies.

We both are very fair-skinned and have no desire to spend hours tanning on a beach. When we go to a beach, it’s usually to swim, to read {either in the shade or lathered in SPF 45}, to sip on a cocktail seaside or just to enjoy the beauty of nature. We did, after all, get married on the beach in Pensacola, Florida.

Our friend who recommended nearly everything we did on this California vacay, also recommended taking a drive to Malibu. She said to make reservations on OpenTable.com to have lunch at Paradise Cove. We were playing most of the day by ear, so we didn’t make the reservations. But it was a Monday and a quick scroll of OpenTable showed reservation availability every fifteen minutes. We figured we’d be safe.

025

As we drove along the beautiful coast, Rob suggested I pull out his iPhone to use his Zillow app. Zillow tells you the approximate value of housing in the area. It was hard to tell exactly which homes were being referred to for a few reasons:

  1. It works better when you are walking or standing, not driving.
  2. Many homes, of course, are tucked away behind gates and up in the hills.
  3. It may not show the exact value of a home, but maybe just the listings of those for sale or that were just sold. Even then, you’d have to take the time to find which house number corresponds.

But it gave us an idea how much it costs to live around there. I think the least expensive home we saw on the Zillow app was $1.2 millon dollars. But they ranged from that end of the spectrum, up to $12.5 million. I am just so curious if those little condos right on the water were that much, too? They were so tiny!

We spent a good forty minutes driving along the coast until we happened upon Paradise Cove. As predicted, it wasn’t busy. We asked for a table outside, as the weather was perfect that day. We settled in, with the sand beneath our feet, kicked off our sandals and contemplated this view.

004Sure, we weren’t right in front of the water, but we had intended to walk the beach afterwards. It was so nice just to be outside, digging our toes in the sand.

A beach calls for a fun cocktail right? We ordered a Malibu Mai Tai and something called The Perfect Day. It was only fitting! It was a gorgeous day and the ten-year anniversary of our first date!

003

What’s in The Perfect Day, you ask? Well, here is your answer:

007And who know Malibu had vineyards? Certainly not me! Love that they had a whole list of Malibu wines:
008I was pretty perplexed by what to order. The menu was a little kitschy, but certainly appropriate for a  beach. I finally settled on the Fish Tacos, but only because they were World Famous. 😉

"The Best Fish Tacos - Pablo's Recipe from Home. The Guys in the Kitchen Love These and So Will You!" - with rice & beans, fresh guacomole and pico de gallo

The Best Fish Tacos – Pablo’s Recipe from Home. The Guys in the Kitchen Love These and So Will You!” – with rice & beans, fresh guacomole and pico de gallo – $19.95

I know that they sound so basic, but they were sooooo fresh-tasting and good! And filling, too. I only ate ate two of them and even that was pushing it.

Rob went for A Steak Sandwich:

A Filet Mignon on Sourdough Cheese Toast with Onions and Mozzarella - $19.95

A Filet Mignon on Sourdough Cheese Toast with Onions and Mozzarella – $19.95

Somewhere hiding under those tomatoes {which Rob promptly removed and placed on my plate} was a cooked-to-perfection filet with a cheesy, toasted, well-seasoned slice of sourdough that was so good it could make you cry. The fries made Rob happy, too.

Before we knew it, we dropped $100 (including tip) – FOR LUNCH!

And although our jaws dropped over the thought of a $100 lunch, we reminded ourselves that we loved the food and it would have sucked to shell out that dough if it hadn’t been that good. We were in California. We had beautiful weather, a gorgeous view and some time to wonder along the beach!

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We drove away from Malibu, past Santa Monica. We decided that the next beach we wanted to hit was Venice for a completely different vibe!

~

Even around Venice Beach, we were astonished by Zillow’s account of the housing costs for some of the little run-down units. What was one of the first things I noticed as we approached the boardwalk after parking our car? The Packer clock in one of the apartments! Can you spot it?

026I loved the artistic vibe of Venice Beach, from the wall murals, to the musicians to the artistic vendors.

033We stopped at a cafe for a beer:

027The prices were much more affordable here! I chose a beer that I thought was fitting for Venice Beach.

{Zoom in on the beer on the left.}

028I found it was fitting, especially since we passed by an “office” no the boardwalk that “The Doctor is in!” and that you could be tested to see if you were eligible for medical marijuana. Well, that is, if you didn’t bring in your camera. 😉 LOL!

Then we turned around and walked along the beach:

031It was such a gorgeous day to be by the water.

With such beautiful weather, walking along the beach, enjoying the views and people watching…

It truly was the perfect day.

That is, until we managed to get back into traffic in order to drive around the mountain to the highway that led us to Temecula.

What’s your idea of a perfect day?

Cheers~
Carrie

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3 responses »

  1. Wow $100 bucks for lunch? So glad it was worth the $$ though! I am still trying to recreate really good sourdough bread at home – no such luck yet though!

  2. Pingback: Thrifty Thursday | Season It Already!

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