Pepperdine University

Malibu & Pacific Palisades

Self-assuredly holding court on 830 acres atop a grassy slope down to the ocean where deer graze at sundown, this private, Christian institution has views of the Pacific and the mountains and is consistently ranked one of America's most beautiful campuses.

Notable faculty over the years have included Ben Stein (former law professor who played the teacher in Ferris Bueller's Day Off, and current political gadfly) and former law-school dean Kenneth Starr, who previously was the independent investigator who revealed to the world where Bill Clinton put his cigars.

Art fans should check out the latest show at the university’s Frederick R Weisman Museum of Art, which rotates edgy works created by contemporary American artists.

Lonely Planet's must-see attractions

Nearby Malibu & Pacific Palisades attractions

1. Frederick R Weisman Museum of Art

0.02 MILES

This art museum on the Pepperdine University campus hosts temporary exhibits of mostly 20th-century art (Claes Oldenburg, Dale Chihuly, Roy Liechtenstein…

2. Legacy Park

1.21 MILES

On gently rolling hills across from Malibu City Hall and next to the Malibu Country Mart, this 15-acre park is a microcosm of six SoCal landscapes all in…

3. Malibu Colony


Malibu has been celebrity central since the 1930s, when money troubles forced landowner May Rindge to lease out property to her famous Hollywood buds…

4. Adamson House

1.66 MILES

Up on a bluff overlooking Surfrider Beach is this gorgeous Spanish-style villa, which used to belong to the Rindge family and is awash in locally made,…

5. Malibu Lagoon State Beach

1.71 MILES

This salty marsh is where Malibu Creek meets the ocean, attracting migratory birds and their human admirers. It underwent a major native-species…

6. Malibu Pier

1.89 MILES

The pier marks the beginning of Malibu’s commercial heart. It’s open for strolling and license-free fishing (note the brackets for your rod and reel) and…

7. Malibu Hindu Temple

3.47 MILES

This house (or, more precisely, these houses) of Hindu gods sneaks up on you as you drive up Malibu Canyon, but you won’t miss the ivory towers located 6…

8. Zuma Beach

6.12 MILES

Zuma is easy to find, and thanks to the wide sweep of blonde sand that has been attracting valley kids to the shore since the 1970s, it gets busy on…