Santa Monica State Beach
|Santa Monica State Beach|
|Location||Los Angeles County, California|
|Nearest city||Santa Monica|
|Governing body||California Department of Parks and Recreation|
Santa Monica Beach 
The beach is located along Pacific Coast Highway in Santa Monica. It is 3.5 miles long and has parks, picnic areas, playgrounds, restrooms, as well as manned lifeguard stations, the original Muscle Beach, bike rentals, concessions,a few hotels, a bike path, and wooden pathways for warm days and beachgoers with disabilities.  Visitor activities include volleyball, surfing, stand up paddleboarding, and swimming.
At the foot of Colorado Avenue, through the famous arch and sign, lies the historic Santa Monica Pier, which dates from 1909. The pier has a National Historic Landmark -– the 1922 Looff Hippodrome Carousel.
A few steps south of the Pier volleyball courts is the International Chess Park. The public chess tables—and a human-scale chessboard set into the sidewalk—draw a wide assortment of players.
Palisades Park is located atop Santa Monica’s famed sandstone cliffs, providing a vantage point to see the sweep of Santa Monica Beach and the Pacific Ocean.
"Ink Well" 
A section of the beach was referred to as "Ink Well" and "Negro Beach" in the early 20th century when it was one of the few areas in California where African Americans were allowed to enjoy beach access in a largely segregated society. Other areas for blacks were Bruce's Beach in Manhattan Beach and the Pacific Beach Club in Orange County. Nick Gabaldon, one of the first black surfers in California, lived in Santa Monica, and used the 200 foot roped off stretch of beach demarcated for blacks. He died after crashing into the Malibu Pier.
Arlington West 
Arlington West is a temporary memorial created on Santa Monica Beach just north of the Santa Monica Pier at Santa Monica, every Sunday from sunrise to sunset. Crosses are placed on the beach for each U.S. military person who has died in the Iraq War. The number of crosses erected every Sunday now exceeds 4,000. For military personnel killed within the week past, flag draped coffins with blue crosses are positioned in front. The Arlington West Memorial, a project of Veterans For Peace, is intended to offer visitors a graceful, visually and emotionally powerful, place for reflection.
See also 
- Official Santa Monica State Beach webpage - City of Santa Monica Santa Monica State Beach
Santa Monica Pier — Pier located on Santa Monica Beach
- Muscle Beach — Portion of Santa Monica Beach south of the pier that was the site of gymnastics exhibitions and bodybuilding
- Santa Monica Pier Aquarium — Aquarium on the pier operated by Heal the Bay, and formerly known as the Ocean Discovery Center
- Pacific Park — the amusement park portion of the pier
- Hot Dog on a Stick — original, opened in 1946, found on the sidewalk just south of the pier in front the original Muscle Beach
- Pacific Ocean Park — former (1958-1967) amusement park one pier south of Santa Monica Pier; demolished in 1974
- Santa Monica bicycle path — path that runs though a bicycle-only underpass under the pier
- Membership discrimination in California social clubs
Gallery of Santa Monica Beach images 
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to: Santa Monica State Beach|
- California State Parks: official Santa Monica State Beach website
- Santa Monica Beach
- LAMountains.com: Santa Monica State Beach