Our latest #Photowalk travel photography adventure: the Los Angeles industrial port town of San Pedro, a fascinating section of the city that reveres its history, has a funky downtown (must see: post office that dates back to FDR) and some of the most photogenic spots I’ve come across since I started this Photowalk journey.
Photo highlights include the Vincent Thomas Bridge, Korean Bell, two lighthouses, Angel’s Gate and Point Fermin and a dynamic coastline that merges into the Palos Verdes Peninsula.
And then there’s the Port of Los Angeles, the largest on the West Coast, one responsible for processing 20% of all imports into the United States. Top products include furniture, auto parts and electronics.
Most people come to San Pedro to board a boat to Catalina Island or a fancy cruise to Mexico. So we start the walk there and end up at the coast.
Above is a map of our top 10 photo spots in San Pedro, starting with the Vincent Thomas Bridge and ending at Cabrillo Beach. The bulk of the walk itself, from the bridge through downtown, is about 2.5 miles, so I recommend walking the first part, then hopping into the car for the rest. I got the shot below from the Catalina Express parking lot, where I was able to watch the sun come up over the bridge, from Long Beach.
Immediately next door to the Catalina Express is the Battleship IOWA for you military fans. Cost is $15-20 to enter.
The Los Angeles Maritime Museum is a lot cheaper–$3, and has a great history of the waterfront. That, and if you’d like to see some seals, they’re all over the docks. Listen closely when I’m doing my standups in the video, and you’ll hear toe seals chirping.
A short 1/2 mile walk up the way will bring you to the San Pedro Fish Market, on the grounds of what was once the Ports O’Call Village. Ports is gone, and expected to be rebuilt, but the Fish Market is hopping. It serves over 1 million customers yearly, and is one of the top 10 most Instagrammed restaurants in the world.
Now let’s head to the funky downtown, a collection of art galleries, antique stores, bars and restaurants. Our favorites are Pappy’s and the San Pedro Brewing Co.
To get to the Korean Friendship Bell, you’ll want to get back in the car, and take a drive down Gaffey Street. (3601 S Gaffey St.) It sits on a wonderful park overlooking the ocean and many people visit to check it out, and fly kites.
Directly across the street is Point Fermin Park, home to one of two lighthouses in San Pedro. The one shown above is an untraditional, old home with a beacon atop. Beyond the Lighthouse, there’s a long, paved walkway overlooking the ocean–with Catalina Island directly across. 807 W Paseo Del Mar
We end at Cabrillo Beach, a traditional ocean beach, and home to the other lighthouse, Angel’s Gate. Cabrillo is also where you’ll find the Frank Lloyd Wright designed Cabrillo Marina Aquarium (3720 Stephen M White Dr) , and a long fishing dock favored by local fishing enthusiasts.