Tucked away between Venice beach and Marina Del Ray harbor, Ballona Lagoon is one of the last tidal wetlands in southern California, with high and low tides twice daily. A picturesque footpath runs the full length of the lagoon. It’s under a mile stretch from the side street you’ll park on, along the wetlands, across an iconic vintage bridge, and shimmying between wetlands and well-groomed private gardens to the harbor. From here, you can return along the path or loop back along the beach, just a block away.
A 16.3-acre natural saltwater estuary, the ocean-fed lagoon is a protected habitat for hundreds of birds, native plants, animals, and marine life and lies on the 2,000-mile migratory Pacific Flyway that birds travel between Alaska and Latin America.
Before Marina Del Rey was developed, the Ballona Lagoon belonged to the 1,700-acre Ballona Wetlands, extending from Playa Del Rey to Santa Monica.