Maritime heritage, art walks and breath-taking seaside views - San Pedro is one of Los Angeles' most unique beachfront communities.
Looking for some maritime history to add to your knowledge? There are plenty of historical museums and sights that should be worthwhile stops. Of course, you must see the beach while you're in San Pedro. Check out the Cabrillo Beach or if sea creatures are more your thing, make sure to visit the Cabrillo Aquarium!
To get to the start of the tour:
Use the Metro Trip Planner
Important Note: Please make sure to always check times and schedules for transportation, destinations and events.
This tour includes the following stops:
Gaffey/6th, SS Victory Lane, Ports O'Call
38th/Pacific & Korean Bell bus stop
Gaffey/6th Bus Stop (LADOT - Community Connection #142)
Take the Metro Blue line to the Transit Mall station in Long Beach. At the Metro station, catch the LADOT-Community Connection #142 towards San Pedro. Depart the bus at Gaffey and 6th streets. Walk east along 6th Street for the next several blocks.
Maritime heritage, art walks and breath-taking seaside views - San Pedro is one of LA's most unique beachfront communities.
Begin your morning in the heart of historic Old San Pedro (bordered by Pacific Avenue, 6th and 7th streets, and Harbor Boulevard). Within a few short blocks, you can wander into delightful shops, discover beautiful antiques, treat yourself to hand crafted objects created by local artisans, enjoy a cup of coffee, and experience international cuisine. Try to catch First Thursdays San Pedro ART Walk (between 4th and 8th streets and Pacific Avenue and Centre Street). On the first Thursday of each month, artists, entertainers, and business people celebrate the arts with an evening of open galleries, studios, street vendors and live entertainment in the Downtown San Pedro Arts District.
The lavish Art Deco Warner Grand Theatre (478 W. 6th St.; 310/548-7672) originally opened to the public on January 20, 1931. This theater, recently restored, plays host to many wonderful performing arts events, exhibits, and classic American films and is used as a location for commercial films and video productions. Just around the corner at 7th Street and Grand Avenue, visit the Croatian Cultural Center (510 W. 7th St.; 310/548-7630) presenting various performances and programming.
Continue along 6th Street to Harbor Boulevard.
Sailing the seas during World War II and the Korean War, the U.S. Navy vessel CA-135 Los Angeles was decommissioned in 1963. When the Los Angeles was dismantled, the community of San Pedro was able to retain her main mast, two anchors, and one of the anchor chain capstans. Dedicated in 1979, they formed the U.S.S. Los Angeles Naval Memorial (S. Harbor Boulevard at 6th Street) symbolizing the heritage of the San Pedro Harbor. An extensive collection of memorabilia from the Los Angeles is on display at the Los Angeles Maritime Museum.
The largest maritime museum in the state of California, the Los Angeles Maritime Museum (Berth 84 at 6th St.; 310/548-7618) is a 75,000 square foot facility featuring more than 700 ships, boat models, navigational equipment, and an operating amateur radio station. Spend time trying any of the 64 types of seaman's knots on display, view an old fishing boat and a tugboat while watching ships in the harbor, or take the wheel of a 19th century ship.
Walk north on Harbor Boulevard.
As you continue your journey into the maritime heritage of San Pedro, be sure to view the Fishing Industry Memorial (S. Harbor Boulevard at 5th Street). This beautiful memorial, complete with a bronze fisherman and a memorial wall, commemorates the history of the fishing industry. Just a few steps away, the Liberty Hill Memorial (5th Street and Port Plaza Building), registered as a historic landmark, recognizes the struggle made by union workers against low wages, bad working conditions, and imprisonment during the first half of the 20th century. In 1923, the Marine Transport Workers Industrial Union 510 called a strike that immobilized 90 ships in San Pedro.
Ports O'Call Village stop (San Pedro Electric Trolley)
On Harbor Boulevard, catch the San Pedro Electric Trolley to the end of the line. Walk over to the SS Victory Lane.
The SS Lane Victory (Berth 94; 310/519-9545), a living memorial to the seamen who lost their lives at sea and a National Historic Landmark, is a World War II cargo ship that includes a museum of ship memorabilia, a gift shop and a library. For an extra adventure, take a one-hour tour, or catch the occasional daylong voyages that recall the ship's adventures during World War II, the Korean War, and the Vietnam War.
Ports O'Call Village stop (San Pedro Electric Trolley)
Re-board the San Pedro Electric Trolley and proceed south on Harbor Boulevard to the Ports O’Call Village.
Stroll through the promenade of meandering cobblestone streets connecting fifteen acres of specialty shops and restaurants at Ports O'Call Village (Sampson Way at 6th Street; 310/732-3508). Once you pick a spot to settle down, grab a table, pick out some fresh fish and dig in. As you enjoy lunch, wave to the passengers sailing by on the cruise ships.
For the second half of the tour, re-board the San Pedro Electric Trolley and depart at Pacific Avenue and 7th Street. At Pacific Avenue, catch the #446 Metro Bus headed south.
38th/Pacific Bus Stop (Metro Bus #446)
Just a stone's throw away from the ocean, learn about the Southern California marine environment from the interactive exhibits at the Cabrillo Marine Aquarium (3720 Stephen M. White Dr.; 310/548-7562). Occupying a multibuilding complex designed by Frank Gehry, the aquarium hosts thirty-eight saltwater displays, including sharks, eels, and octopus. You can observe local marine animals as they appear in nature, and even touch live animals in the tide pool called the "touch tank." Once you've had a chance to explore the aquarium, take a moment to visit Cabrillo Beach. A wonderful beach located inside the breakwater that protects the harbor, it offers great swimming and low waves.
||Korean Bell bus stop (Metro Bus #446)
Re-board the #446 and continue south on Pacific Avenue. Depart at the Korean Bell Site bus stop.
"Breathtaking" and "spectacular" are just a few words to describe the panoramic view of the coastline and Santa Catalina Island from the grassy cliffs of Angel's Gate Park (3601 S. Gaffey St.; 310/548-7705). Complete with a children's play area, basketball court, soccer field, and a recreation center, this area also houses an Olympic-sized swimming pool and cultural center. As you explore the park, be sure to visit the Korean Bell of Friendship, the Marine Mammal Care Center, the Fort MacArthur Military Museum and the Angel's Gate Lighthouse.
To celebrate the bicentennial of the United States' Independence, the Republic of Korea donated the Korean Bell of Friendship (S. Gaffey Street at 37th Street) to the people of Los Angeles. The bell is intricately decorated with four pairs of figures, the Goddess of Liberty and a Korean spirit, engraved in relief on the body of the bell. The bell is rung three times each year: The Fourth of July, August 15th (Korean Independence Day) and New Year's Eve.
Pay a visit to the Marine Mammal Care Center (3601 S. Gaffey St.; 310/548-5677). The Center serves as a "hospital" for sick and injured seals and sea lions and provides public viewing of their rehabilitation, exhibits and educational programs on marine mammals.
The historic Angel's Gate Lighthouse has marked the entrance to the port since 1913. The breakwater is 9,250 feet long and contains nearly three million tons of rock brought over from Santa Catalina Island.
Walk toward the very southern tip of the park, across S. Paseo Del Mar.
The Point Fermin Lighthouse (Point Fermin Park, S. Gaffey Street at S. Paseo Del Mar) was built in 1874 with lumber and bricks brought around Cape Horn by sailing ships. This Victorian lighthouse was a palatial structure for its time, crowned with a cupola fitted with a 2,100-candlepower light. This graceful building, surrounded by a colorful flower garden, is one of the oldest lighthouses on the West Coast. It served as an aid to safe passage between the Channel Islands and into the harbor for nearly one hundred years.