Best beaches to enjoy the warm weather

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Irene Nesbitt

Santa Monica beach Photo credit: Tessie Navarro / Multimedia Editor

With our year-long sunshine and warm climates, Californians are always beach-ready. Here are the closest and best beaches for CSUN students to relax, work out, surf, or take part in a number of other offered activities.

Zuma Beach is great for students who need to relax after a long long day of studying.  Located on Pacific Coast Highway (PCH) in Malibu, (about 30 miles and a 50 minute drive from CSUN), Zuma is known to be one of the cleanest and most beautiful beaches in Southern California and is ranked among the healthiest beaches in Los Angeles by Yelp reviewers and the LA County Department of Public Health.

Some of Zuma’s best features are its blue-green clean waters, wide stretch of fluffy golden sand, breathtaking sunsets, dolphin sighting opportunities, ample free parking, and its soothing atmosphere.

According to beach reviewers on Yelp, Zuma  is not very crowded during the year. But they warn that Zuma’s peak times are usually on the weekends, during the holidays, and in summer months. If you plan on coming during any of these times you should start your day early to avoid the crowds!

Great tasting food places are located near Zuma Beach as well. For a quick snack there are food huts that sell drinks, yummy burgers, and tasty fries. There are also nice seafood restaurants if you prefer to dine out with friends and family.

Zuma not only scores points for its laid-back atmosphere and beauty, but also for its numerous facilities to help keep you active. Students can surf, kiteboard, windsurf, bodysurf, and play volleyball.

For beach lovers looking for excitement, street art, and other kinds of entertainment, look no further than Venice Beach. Venice is the beach that never sleeps!

Venice is not just a beach where students can do typical beach activities, but many other things as well! Students can shop, see street and break dance performers, listen to live music, view art galleries, play at the volleyball courts, and enjoy the variety of restaurants.

Venice is a very diverse place where CSUN students will find tons of interesting people and events that will never cease to amaze you. Via the 405, this drive will only take students 40 minutes to get there.

Attention surf lovers! If your goal is to find a beach with great waves, check out the Malibu Lagoon State Beach (formerly known as Surfrider Beach). LSB is famous for its smooth three-point break waves.

Not only are the waves great, but there is also a surf museum, gift shops, and great tasty restaurants near the beach. Located about 25 miles and 45 minutes away, LSB beach is one of the most prominent and well-respected beaches in surfing culture and is located in a very beautiful and well-to-do area.

A wonderful bonus that LSB has is that it’s close to the historic Malibu Pier where beach-goers can get tours of the harbor, whale-watch, and enjoy numerous mouth-watering seafood restaurants.

If you are more of a swimmer than a surfer, head to Will Rogers State Beach.  For those looking for a refreshing dip in the ocean, this will probably be your number one choice. Bonus points for WRSB is that it won an ocean oscar in 2010 as the best beach in California for swimmers!

Located in Pacific Palisades (near Santa Monica), WRSB has several volleyball courts and a number of great restaurants nearby. WRSB is also easily accessible and travelers should have no problem finding the vast amounts of free parking offered along the streets. The drive from CSUN takes 25 minutes and 35 minutes on the 405.

The Redondo Beach Pier is a great beach for students, who want to get away during spring break week or  for a weekend getaway.

At RB you can surf, fish on the pier, rent bikes or kayaks, take a speed boat ride, or go for a swim!

There are also plenty of local shops, restaurants, and hotels for beach-goers and families to go to. If students travel on the 405 and take Hawthorne Boulevard or Aviation Boulevard it  will take about 50 minutes and a 25 mile drive.

One of the closest beaches to CSUN is Santa Monica Beach. By taking the 405, you can get there in only 25 miles and 35 minutes.  Sure it can be crowded, but hey, the awesome summer concerts and fun amusement park is just too good to pass up.

Santa Monica Beach has a bike path for bicycle lovers, a walking path,  good surfing and swimming waters, and several volleyball courts.

Those staying overnight will find no problem finding hotels on the beach, as there are a variety located on the beach and in nearby towns.