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6 Reasons to Move to Santa Monica, CA

1. Geography

Santa Monica is a beachfront city situated on Santa Monica Bay in western Los Angeles County, California. The community sits perched on the Pacific Ocean at the crossroads of Pacific Coast Highway and California Interstate Highway 10.

The city of Los Angeles–Pacific Palisades border Santa Monica to the north, Brentwood on the northeast, Sawtelle on the east, Mar Vista on the southeast, and Venice on the south. To the west, Santa Monica has the 3-mile coastline fronting the Santa Monica Bay.

The size of Santa Monica is nearly 8.3 square miles (22 square km), and most of the area rests on a flat slope that angles down towards Ocean Avenue and towards the south.

The beaches of the community are separated from the north side of the city by high bluffs.

1.a Climate

Santa Monica enjoys a Mediterranean climate that is mild and balmy, with refreshing ocean breezes and no humidity. Cool breezes blow in from the ocean, which tend to keep the air fresh and clean. However, during the autumn months (from September through November), the Santa Ana winds brings smoggy and hot inland air to the beaches when it blows from the east.

September is usually the month with the highest temperatures, but it is in winter, however, when the hot, dry winds of the Santa Anas are most common, so it’s very rare that during this period, the temperatures exceed 10 degrees below average.

Winter temperatures are usually between 53°F and 67° F, with January temperatures above above 70°F. There has never been any snow or frost in this area, but there has been hail.

During winter, the storms approach from the northwest and pass quickly through the Southland.

Morning fog, caused by ocean temperature variations and currents, is a common phenomenon during May, June and early July due to the city’s location –on the vast and open Santa Monica Bay.

The area is suddenly covered by daily fog in the late winter and early summer, and this may last just a few hours or past sunset time. During June mornings, overcast skies are common but the strong sun generally burns the fog off by noon.

Sometimes the weather stay cloudy and cool all day during this month too, even if other parts of the Los Angeles area are experiencing sunny skies and warmer temperatures. In fact, at times, the beach area can be overcast while the sun shines away just east of 20th Street.

According to, as a general rule, the beach temperature is from 5 to 10 degrees Fahrenheit (3 to 6 degrees Celsius) cooler than it is inland during summer days, and 5–10 degrees warmer during winter nights.

The rainy season in Santa Monica starts from late October through late March, and there is very little rain during the rest of the year.

Rainy years are occasionally followed by droughts.

2. Economy

Many notable businesses have their headquarters in Santa Monica, including Fatburger, TOMS Shoes, Hulu, Universal Music Group, Lionsgate Films, the RAND Corporation, Beachbody, and Macerich. Supermarine (now Atlantic Aviation) is at the Santa Monica Airport while the National Public Radio member station KCRW is located at the Santa Monica College campus.

Santa Monica is also home to multiple game development studios, and that’s why the city is a major location for the industry.

Among these type of businesses we find: Activision Blizzard, Treyarch, Cloud Imperium Games (Creators of Star Citizen), Naughty Dog (Creators of Crash Bandicoot (1996–1999), Jak & Daxter and Uncharted franchises), SCE Studios Santa Monica, Studio Santa Monica (An in-house studio of SCE and creators of God of War), Riot Games, the creators of League of Legends is located just outside the eastern city limit.

The top employers in the city are: City of Santa Monica, Santa Monica – UCLA Medical Center, Santa Monica College, Saint John’s Health Center, Santa Monica-Malibu Unified School District, RAND Corporation, Universal Music Group, Activision Blizzard, ET Whitehall (Shutters and Casa del Mar) and Lionsgate Entertainment.

According to Santa Monica recently has emerged as the center of the Los Angeles region called Silicon Beach, and serves as the home of hundreds of venture-capital funded startup companies.

Fundera ranked the city the 6th best city for small business in a 2016 study, due to the city’s strong small business community.

The 2015-16 SM Travel & Tourism Fiscal Year Report estimates that:

1. The total visitors in Santa Monica are nearly 7.3 million (48.2% International; 51.8% Domestic).

2. The total annual visitor spending is $1.84 billion.

3. The average daily spending is $359 (hotel visitor); $94 (day visitor).

4. The retail sales tax revenue generated from Visitors is $11.9 million.

5. The visitor hotel occupancy tax revenue is $46.6 million

Moving to Santa Monica Dorothy Green Park

3. Government

The Santa Monica City Council functions as the legislative body that represents the citizens of Santa Monica. It is responsible for establishing the City policies and service standards.

The Council selects one of its members to serve as Mayor and another to serve as Mayor Pro Tempore every two years, after each election.

Seven members elected at-large for staggered four-year terms, formed the City Council.

In the California State Legislature, Santa Monica is in the 26th Senate District, represented by Democrat Ben Allen, and in the 50th Assembly District, represented by Democrat Richard Bloom.

In the United States House of Representatives, Santa Monica is in California’s 33rd congressional district, represented by Democrat Ted Lieu.

4. Education

4.a Public Schools

The Santa Monica-Malibu Unified School District (SMMUSD) is located in Los Angeles County and it serves the coastal communities of Santa Monica and Malibu.
SMMUSD has a population of 11,000 students in Transitional Kindergarten through 12th grade in 10 elementary schools, two middle schools, one middle / high school, one comprehensive high school, a continuation high school and a K – 8th grade alternative school.
SMASH –Santa Monica Alternative School House– is an optional K-8 public school with team teachers and multi-aged classrooms.
The district also manages 11 early childhood education centers and an adult school.
Some of the SMMUSD’s public elementary schools located in Santa Monica are: Edison Language Academy, Franklin Elementary School, Grant Elementary School, John Muir Elementary School, McKinley Elementary School, Santa Monica Alternative School House [SMASH], Roosevelt Elementary School, Will Rogers Learning Community Middle schools.
The district also manages these three public middle schools: John Adams Middle School, Lincoln Middle School and SMASH; and these two high schools: Olympic High School and Santa Monica High School.
Academic scores of the SMMUSD’s schools are consistently in the top tier of districts in both, Los Angeles County and the State of California.
Institutions such as Franklin Elementary School, McKinley Elementary School, Point Dume Elementary School, Roosevelt Elementary School, Webster Elementary School and Lincoln Middle School have been recognized as California Distinguished Schools; while Olympic High School has been named a Model Continuation High School in California – only one of some 25 schools out of nearly 500 continuation schools in the state.

4.b Private Schools

Among the private schools located in the city we find: Carlthorp School, Santa Monica Montessori School, Crossroads School, Saint Monica Catholic Elementary School, Concord High School, Pacifica Christian High School, St. Anne Catholic School, Saint Monica Catholic High School, New Roads School and PS1 Pluralistic School

4.b Area Colleges & Universities

For the residents pursuing higher education, there are several options in the city and in the nearby areas including: The Art Institute of California, Los Angeles; Emperor’s College of Traditional Oriental Medicine, Mount St. Mary’s College, Santa Monica College (SMC), University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA), University of Phoenix, Culver City Learning Center, University of Southern California (USC) and Rand Graduate School.

4.c Library

The Santa Monica Main Library is located at 601 Santa Monica Blvd, and it also manages these four branches: Fairview Branch, Montana Avenue Branch, Ocean Park Branch and Pico Branch. All of them situated in Santa Monica.
These facilities are equipped with a variety of workstation configurations such as:

a) The Online Catalog and E-Source Workstations equipped with access to the Library’s online catalog and over 30 premium subscription databases.

b) E-Source/Word Stations equipped with access to the Library’s online catalog, subscription databases, Mavis Beacon Teaches Typing, and these Microsoft Office 2010 applications: Microsoft Word, Excel, and Powerpoint. E-Source Plus stations are available at the Main Library near the 2nd Floor Reference Desk.

c) Internet Stations equipped with access to the Web via Internet Explorer and also access to the Library’s online catalog, subscription databases, Mavis Beacon Teaches Typing, and these Microsoft Office 2010 applications: Microsoft Word, Excel, and Powerpoint.

d) Teen Stations are available for use by visitors registered with a Teen Library Card. These stations are equipped with access to the Web via Internet Explorer and also equipped with access to the Library’s online catalog,subscription databases, Photoshop Elements, Mavis Beacon Teaches Typing, and the following Microsoft Office 2010 applications: Microsoft Word, Excel, and Powerpoint.
The Ocean Park Branch has a total of five stations for youth, which are shared by both teens and children.

e) Children’s Stations available for use by visitors registered with a Juvenile Library Card. These stations are equipped with access to the Web via Internet Explorer and also are equipped with access to the Library’s online catalog, subscription databases, interactive educational games, Mavis Beacon Teaches Typing, and the following Microsoft Office 2010 applications: Microsoft Word, Excel, and Powerpoint.

The Ocean Park Branch has a total of five stations for younger visitors.
The Main Library and Branch Libraries offer rental meeting rooms with a wide variety of room setups and capacities such as the s study rooms (7 of them), YS Study Room Youth Services (for small groups of children or teens who need space to work together on projects), and a Quiet Study Room ( on the northeast corner of the 2nd floor for those who are seeking a quiet environment with tables for reading or studying).
These rooms are rented for a fee and can be reserved up to two months in advance by contacting the library directly.
In order to promote universal access to its collections and services, the Santa Monica Public Library offers multiple assistive devices such as DirectEar (Assistive Listening Devices available for use at programs held in the Main Library Multipurpose room and Martin Luther King, Jr. Auditorium); Large Print Keyboard (for the online catalog workstation adjacent to the 1st floor Fiction, with labels that have been enlarged and enhanced for easier visual recognition); a Roller Plus Joystick (an adaptable mouse substitute with a joystick); Magnifying Sheets (8.5 x 11 inch magnifying sheets can be signed out for use in the Library at the Main Library, in the 2nd floor Reference Desk, only during the hours that the Library is open); Telescope Viewer ( a very powerful closed-circuit television magnifying reading system that assists visitors who have low vision by magnifying text, pictures, and other physical items); a TTY/TTD Terminal equipped with public access telephone is available at the Main Library, on 2nd floor Reference desk, during the hours that the Library is open. A TDD/TTY which is an electronic device used by people with speech or hearing disabilities to text communication via the telephone lines.
Sign Language Interpreters, Translators and materials in alternate formats such as taped text, Braille, audio-description and captioning can be reserved for Library programs. For Reservations you can call the Library Administration at 310/458-8606 at least one week prior to the program.
The California Library Services for People with Print Disabilities in association with the Library of Congress provide free Braille and audio books, magazines and playback equipment to all residents unable to read standard print.
Free instructional classes are held in the Computer Training Room in the Main Library (601 Santa Monica Blvd) and at the branch libraries. The class teach how to use the Internet and the Library’s electronic resources.

Santa Monica view

5. Infrastructure

5.a Transportation

It’s easy to access Santa Monica from Los Angeles International Airport (8 miles), Burbank-Glendale-Pasadena Airport (30 mi.), and Los Angeles Amtrak (13 mi).
The Santa Monica Freeway (Interstate 10) begins in Santa Monica near the Pacific Ocean and heads east crossing seven more states, ending at Jacksonville, Florida.
State Route 2 (Santa Monica Boulevard) also begins in the city, and continues northeast across Los Angeles County through the Angeles National Forest. When crossing the San Gabriel Mountains the highway receives the name of the Angeles Crest Highway, and it ends in Wrightwood, CA.
The city of Santa Monica is also the western (Pacific) terminus of historic U.S. Route 66.
According to, close to the eastern boundary of Santa Monica, Sepulveda Boulevard reaches from Long Beach at the south, to the northern end of the San Fernando Valley.
Interstate 405, known as the “San Diego Freeway” is located just east of Santa Monica. This freeway serves as a major north-south route in the counties of Los Angeles and Orange.

5.b Bus service

The city of Santa Monica runs its own bus service, the Big Blue Bus; which not only serves the city, but also, big part of West Los Angeles and the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA).
BBB’s buses provide more than 19 million rides for customers each year, and its route area stretches more than 51 square miles of greater Los Angeles.
Please visit for complete information including routes and fares.
The Los Angeles County Metropolitan Transportation Authority’s (Metro) bus lines, also serves the city of Santa Monica, and complements the Big Blue service when the units are not operating overnight.
Metro buses make many Big Blue Bus stops, in addition to MTA stops.

5.c Light rail

Phase 2 of The Metro Expo Line project runs 6.6 miles from Culver City west to Santa Monica. The service opened on May 20th, 2016 and it connects Santa Monica by rail to Downtown LA, Pasadena, San Fernando Valley, South Bay, Long Beach and multiple points in between.
The travel time from downtown Santa Monica to the downtown Los Angeles terminal is approximately 47 minutes.
Santa Monica Metro stations include 26th Street/Bergamot, 17th Street/Santa Monica College, and Downtown Santa Monica. Other 4 new stations are: Palms, Westwood/Rancho Park, Expo/Sepulveda and Expo/Bundy.
These seven new stations serves diverse LA neighborhoods including: Century City, West Los Angeles, and Santa Monica. And thanks to this initiative, the Metro Rail system will now expand to 87 stations and over 93 miles of rail to destinations across Los Angeles County.

5.d Bike

Santa Monica is one of the leaders for bicycle infrastructure and programming in Los Angeles County. In November 2015 the city launched a bicycle sharing system –a service in which bicycles are made available for shared use to individuals on a very short term basis. The system allows people to borrow a bike from point “A” and return it at point “B”.
Santa Monica is traversed by the Braude Bike Trail (a paved bicycle path that runs mostly along the Pacific Ocean shoreline in Los Angeles County, California.)
The League of American Bicyclists awarded the city with the Bicycle Friendly Community Award –Bronze in 2009 and Silver in 2013.

6. Point of Interest

Santa Monica is the perfect beach town with plenty of things to do. Some of the top attractions and activities include:

  • The Santa Monica Pier

When one thinks of activities to do in Santa Monica, the number one attraction is clearly the Santa Monica Pier with its amusement park and the famous nine story Pacific Park’s Ferris wheel, which is also solar-powered. One of its kind in the region!
The park also features the historic Looff Hippodrome Carousel, a five-story West Coaster roller coaster, the nine-story Pacific Plunge tower ride and the only over-water miniature golf course.
But the Pacific Park’s offers many other amenities apart from a full-service amusement park, because there are also 7 restaurants ranging from fine seafood to classic American food (where costumers enjoy great views of the ocean); an aquarium, bars, souvenir shops, as well as an entertaining arcade with more than 200 games; street performers, live local music, outstanding views of Malibu and the South Bay, and much more.
The Trapeze School of New York (TSNY) is also located at the Pier, and offers up a high-flying, fun-filled experience for intrepid visitors, even with no prior experience. Classes are two hours long and are taught in groups of up to 10 people.
The Santa Monica Pier definitely sets Santa Monica apart as an ideal destination for people of any age. Over 6 million people a year visit this iconic attraction, that is also a popular photo spot.

  •  Santa Monica Beach

Santa Monica Beach stretches 3.5 miles long, providing plenty of room for hundreds of visitors – specially during summer time–, as well as for practicing multiple fun activities such as beach combing, swimming, surfing, paddle boarding, sunbathing, fishing and much more.
At the beach you are going to find not only that both, the sand and the ocean are clean and beautiful, but also, numerous attractions and services such as lifeguard stations, a row of volleyball courts, paved walkways, restrooms, multiple restaurants and fiery beachside sunsets.
Bay St. located just south of Hotel Casa del Mar is a popular surf and paddle boarding spot because of its easy accessibility.
Biking along the Marvin Braude Bike Trail, also known as The South Bay Bicycle Trail or The Strand, is another popular activity in Santa Monica.
The Strand consists of a 22-mile long, paved trail that starts in at Will Rogers State Beach (the northernmost point of Santa Monica), and finishes at the Torrance County Beach. It runs also through Venice, Hermosa and Redondo Beach. The Strand is indeed, the world’s longest oceanfront bike path!

Bicycle rentals, bike tours and hotel loaner programs are available for visitors.

  • Shopping

Located just two blocks from the beach and steps away from the famous Third Street Promenade, Santa Monica Place features multiple luxury and specialty shops such as Tiffany & Co., Bloomingdale’s, Nordstrom, Louis Vuitton, Burberry, Michael Kors and Emporio Armani, as well as a third-floor rooftop deck where visitors enjoy gorgeous ocean views and an entire floor of restaurants, including ‘The Market”.
At the Market diners will find a wide arrange of fine food such as artisanal cheese, wines, chocolates, olive oils, fresh produce, flowers and much more.
Santa Monica features other walkable shopping neighborhoods, offering great sales and designer threads.
The Third Street Promenade is a pedestrian-only, open-air shopping destination, located only two blocks from the city’s beaches. It is well known for its weekly farmers market, ample dining options, street performers and terrific stores.
The best farmers markets in the county are located in Santa Monica, and that’s why they attract hundreds of residents, visitors and local chefs with the fresh produce, flowers, meats, cheeses, nuts, fish, and much more.

  • Arts & Culture

Santa Monica is a city that embraces culture with its abundance of public art and sculpture, as well as street performers. There are more than 75 museums and art galleries in the city.

L&M Arts (a branch of the New York City gallery by the same name) and Bergamot Station (an old train depot containing some 35 galleries) are both, extraordinary places to visit.

  •  Tongva Park

Tongva Park was Designed by James Corner Field Operations, and the inspiration for its design was the Southern California arroyo landscape, characterized by washes and ravines that once defined the site.
This seven-acre park, located in the heart of the city, features an abundant and ambitious plant scheme, contemplative walking paths, soothing water elements, and two viewing platforms for great views of the Pacific Ocean.


As you can see Santa Monica is a family-friendly city with multiple great schools, amenities and activities at the beach and surrounding areas; making it one of the most desirable places to live in the country!
So, if you are ready to move to this paradisiac beach city, contact our Santa Monica moving company.
Our experts Santa Monica movers are ready to relocate your belongings and assist you with all of your needs.