The Palos Verdes peninsula looms over the South Bay of Los Angeles County. It's an oasis of greenery in a region dominated by concrete and asphalt. Horse Trails, ocean cliffs, tidepools and nature walks abound. If you're in LA, and you want to see the Pacific Ocean in a more natural setting, you basically would choose between the Santa Monica Mountains area of Malibu or else Palos Verdes. The Palos Verdes Peninsula is made of four cities. The City of Rolling Hills, the City of Rolling Hills Estates, the City of Palos Verdes, and the City of Palos Verdes Estates.
Pacific Coast Highway goes past Palos Verdes.
There is some form of local public transportation. Palos Verdes Peninsula Transit. But if you're travelling around Southern California you'll already know that it's really tough to rely on public transportation to get around.
Palos Verdes is bounded by four major roads. Palos Verdes Drive North, which runs parallel to Pacific Coast Highway, Palos Verdes Drive South and Palos Verdes Drive West, which runs along the Pacific Ocean, and Palos Verdes Drive East, which overlooks the Harbor Area.
- Most of the things to see are off of Palos Verdes Drive South or Palos Verdes Drive North. This drive is beautiful, overlooking the Pacific Ocean, and has been used in car advertisements, showcasing cars going around curves and bends with beautiful scenery in the distance. The rest of Palos Verdes is a rather upscale residential neighborhood, and while beautiful, not exactly a destination.
- Wayfarer's Chapel designed by Frank Wright is a beautiful little chapel. Instead of walls, it's mostly windows, and surrounded by beautiful trees, overlooking the Pacific Ocean. A lot of people get married here. It's a Swedenborgian church.
- Near the Wayfarer's Chapel is a lighthouse at Point Vicente that's got some good views. It's fun to stroll around. The lighthouse itself if off-limits.
- Further south, Portugese Bend is a very geologically active area that has been suffering massive land slippage. There used to be houses, but they've all been destroyed by the land slippage. Now, it's a great place to find open trails and nature.
- Marine World is now closed. The site has been used for some MTV filming though.
- Donald Trump is renovating a golf course that's along the Pacific Ocean. Before he bought it, the 18th hole fell into the ocean.
- There's some great nature trails around PV. The geology and plants are similar to the Channel Islands.
- Tidepools along the cliffs are fun to walk along. There's even a rusting wreck of an old ship in one section. Back in the 50s, a ship carrying grain sprung a leak. The water swelled the grain, and it split the boat in half.
- Hiking along the many nature trails, and along the Pacific Ocean is fun.
- Horseback riding along the many horse trails.
- There's an infamous surfing spot at Lunada Bay. It's been mentioned in many surfing magazines as a sad example of localism in action. Outsiders get harrassed and threatened, their cars get keyed, tires slashed, etc.
- There's an upscale mall called the Avenue of the Peninsula off Silver Spur Road.
- There's a tiny shopping center near the intersection of Palos Verdes Drive West, and Palos Verdes Drive North. It's quite beautiful, and it's been used as a setting for some car brochures, since the tile roofs and fountains and greenery makes it looks rather Mediterranean.