Los Angeles is full of natural wonder, and contrary to popular belief, Angelenos don't spend all their time in cars or on air conditioned reality television sets. So as part of Curbed Outdoors Week 2011, we're looking to decide once and for all on Los Angeles's greatest outdoors--the best in hikes, beaches, dog parks, and hanging out parks. Today we settle the matter of the county's best beach. Check out the choices below and cast your vote (polls will be open for 24 hours), then nominate your dog park and hanging out park for lasting glory by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org. And don't forget to go vote in our Best Hike poll--because of the outage this week, we're keeping it open until tomorrow too.
Venice Beach, Venice
Sure, there are some parts of Venice Beach where it'd probably be pretty easy to contract hepatitis, but not getting hepatitis isn't what Venice is about--it's about the carnival atmosphere, the Boardwalk, the sports, Muscle Beach, and surfing.
Paradise Cove, Malibu
Take it away, nominator: "One of the most beautiful, if not the most beautiful beaches in Southern California. South facing means small surf and no riptides for the kids. Sheltered cove also means less wind to blow your umbrella. A beach front restaurant or bring your own food and enjoy beer and wine on the sand. Everyone wins." You do have to pay to get into fancy PC--$5 for walk-ins and several hundred for a cabana. [Image via Paradise Cove]
The Strand, Manhattan Beach
The Strand sits somewhere between the laid back beauty of Malibu and the sporty craziness of Venice (but not geographically)--you can bike, jog, rollerblade if people still do that, and watch both the pretty ocean and the pricey real estate. [Image via Yelp]
Zuma Beach, Malibu
There're reasons everyone loves Zuma--it's pretty, it's clean, it's got good sand and good dolphin-sighting, and it's pretty easy to park nearby on the PCH. Its biggest drawback is that everyone loves Zuma. That place gets crowded. [Image via Wikipedia]