Venice Beach Recreation Center

The Venice Recreation Center may be one of the most famous recreation centers on the planet. Adjacent to the Venice Boardwalk, crowds of locals and tourists constantly stream by this center of heated athletics and dazzling bouts of physical prowess.


Dating back to the 1930s when spectators gathered around this area to watch athletes, stuntmen, and circus performers do gymnastics, the center continues to serve as a spectacle today. Facilities include a weight pen, skate park, basketball, handball, and paddle tennis courts, and the famous Muscle Beach.

When you visit, stop by the caged paddle tennis courts. Athletes from all over the world travel to these courts (11 in total), considered one of the best in the country. A must see also includes Muscle Beach, where fitness icons Jack Lalanne and Arnold Schwarzenegger promoted weightlifting to the world. If you're itching to play some hoops, the center provides basketballs and as well as other recreational equipment. Head to Zelda's Deli for a refreshing sandwich after sweating it on the court.

Begin at the intersection of Pacific and Windward Ave and then walk down toward the beach.

Transit: From downtown bus stop at Spring/1st in Downtown LA, take the 733 Bus towards Santa Monica. Get off at Main/Grand and walk west about 2 minutes to the intersection of Pacific an Windward Ave.

Car: From the 10 Freeway West exit for 4th/5th St. Keep left at the fork, follow signs for 4 St. Turn left onto 4th St. and then take the third right onto Pico Blvd. Turn left onto Neilson Way and continue for about 2 miles as it turns into Pacific Ave and you will encounter Windward Ave.

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