South Coast Botanic Garden

South Bay Beaches

It’s hard to believe that this 87-acre, flowering and fruiting, sprouting and sprawling blast of life (we’re talking around 2000 species) was reclaimed from former landfill. Plant shows and sales take place year-round. Themed gardens include Mediterranean, rose, drought-friendly (always an issue in California), herb, Japanese and more.

Lonely Planet's must-see attractions

Nearby South Bay Beaches attractions

1. Green Hills Memorial Park

2.19 MILES

Among the 'residents' of this cemetery is Charles Bukowski, buried in plot number 875 of the Ocean View section.

2. Wayfarers Chapel

3.29 MILES

The most stunning non-natural attraction on Palos Verdes was built by Lloyd Wright (son of Frank) in 1951, and no matter where you stand among the great…

3. Abalone Cove Shoreline Park

3.44 MILES

The best place to hunt for starfish, anemones and other tide-pool critters is in and around this rock-strewn eco-preserve. The walk down to the beach gets…

4. Redondo & Torrance Beaches

4.26 MILES

Redondo Beach is a working-class beach town, the largest in the South Bay and the most ethnically diverse. As it wanders inland it bleeds into neighboring…

5. Veterans Park

4.46 MILES

Come here for the weekly farmers market, Thursdays 8am to 1pm.

6. Point Vicente Interpretive Center

4.64 MILES

Binocular-toting whale watchers gather north of the adjacent lighthouse between December and April when Pacific gray whales embark on their fascinating…

7. Point Vicente Lighthouse

4.67 MILES

Watch the earth curve and the sea crash on the Point Vicente bluffs while leaning against the gleaming-white 1926 lighthouse, which was staffed until 1971…

8. Fort MacArthur Military Museum

4.75 MILES

Just north of Point Fermin and west of the Korean Friendship Bell, this rambling, 20-acre facility was an LA harbor defensive post until 1945, as well as…