Cruise the Beach along The Strand

Cruiser bikes are becoming more popular everywhere, but in the South Bay beaches, they are the way to get around.  In fact, in the Strand – which reaches from Redondo Beach to Hermosa Beach – you’ll find cruiser bikes are everywhere!

This July 2010 article from HelloLosAngeles.com examines in detail the best way to get around the Strand, and why these bikes are so popular in the South Bay beaches.

Sitting upright on your cruiser, with little need to tap the footbrakes, you can cruise the flat path for up to 25 miles one-way from Redondo to almost Malibu as you pass through eight beach towns. Start your northbound ride—unless you prefer to walk, run or skate the Strand, as many do—at the Redondo Boardwalk and Pier. If you need to rent a bike, cruisers can be rented two blocks away at Marina Bike Rentals (505 North Harbor, next to the Cheesecake Factory).

You’ll start with a three-block ride along North Harbor Drive from the Redondo Pier to Herondo Avenue, past restaurants, marinas and Wyland’s Whaling Wall, a massive whale mural painted on the side of a power plant. At Herondo, the street that divides Redondo and Hermosa, the Strand path angles west to the beach for its passage through Hermosa Beach, Manhattan Beach and beyond. For many miles, the scenery to the west seldom changes: a wide sandy beach, sunbathers, beach volleyballers, surfers and lifeguard towers.

The ocean view and people watching, especially on summer days, is exhilarating. And if you tire of gawking at the hard bodies of surfers and beach volleyball fanatics (this is the capital of pro beach volleyball), stop to fly a kite or construct a sandcastle with your kids. You can have more fun after returning to the Redondo Boardwalk and Pier, a colorful patchwork of family-oriented shops and restaurants.

Oh, about the beach youth culture that’s all around you on the bike ride, it dates to 1907, when George Freeth introduced surfing to the U.S. mainland in Redondo after moving from Hawaii. He later established L.A.’s beach lifeguard corps. Much of beach culture, from the Beach Boys to beach fashions, has evolved from those beginnings.

Through Hermosa and Manhattan, the path threads between the tiny front yards of beach cottages and the sand. Many of these cottages are rented by surfers, and a cluster of surf shops, pizza shacks and bars can be found next to the Strand at the Hermosa Pier. On summer weekends, hundreds of cruiser bikes are parked outside those establishments, and why not? As the T-shirt slogan reads: “Life is a Beach.”

Read the entire article here.