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Theresa Solis/EyeEm/Getty Images

Key Info

1615 Ocean Ave.

Price & Hours

Free
6 a.m.-11 p.m. daily

Details

Free, Parks and Gardens Type
1 to 2 hours Time to Spend

scorecard

  • 5.0Value
  • 4.0Facilities
  • 3.5Atmosphere

Like skinnier Palisades Park to the west, Tongva Park offers a welcome respite from Santa Monica's tourist-filled beach and shopping thoroughfare. In this 6-acre oasis, which is named after the region's Indigenous Tongva Indian Tribe, you'll find a mix of native and locally appropriate plants spread throughout four areas: Observation Hill, Discovery Hill, Garden Hill and Gathering Hill. Observation Hill beckons to those in search of phenomenal ocean panoramas. Discovery Hill draws families with its kids amenities, including a splash pad, a play area and a shaded picnic facility. Garden Hill impresses nature lovers with its stunning flora (think: colorful lilies, agaves in various shapes and tall pokers in fiery hues). And Gathering Hill draws culture hounds keen on attending a free concert at the amphitheater or checking out the park's unique Weather Field art installation.

Previous visitors loved Tongva Park's thoughtful design, central location, beautiful landscaping and excellent children's amenities. However, some felt uncomfortable with the number of homeless residents they saw here during their visits. If this is a concern to you, plan on visiting during the day; several past visitors said the park felt less safe at night.

Tongva Park sits close to Ken Genser Square (where you'll find Santa Monica's city hall) and top attractions like the Santa Monica Pier, Santa Monica Place and the Third Street Promenade. Basic amenities like restrooms, walking paths and free Wi-Fi access are available in addition to the park's more unique facilities. There is no on-site parking lot, but several metered spaces and garages are located within walking distance. The LA Metro's Downtown Santa Monica Station and multiple Big Blue Bus stops are also situated nearby. If you decide to bike here, you can park your bicycle at any of the park's entrances.

The park welcomes visitors for free every day from 6 a.m. to 11 p.m. Keep in mind, operating hours for Discovery Hill's splash pad may vary. For more information, visit the City of Santa Monica's Tongva Park website.

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