The Pacific Coast Highway 1 (PCH) is a famous area of Malibu known for its stretch of ocean views. Right on the beach along PCH is the Beverly Hills Beach Club, made famous by the television show 90210 in the 1990s.
Surfers and even dolphins and other marine life are often visible from the shoreline. A number of parking lots exist along the road if wanting to pull over for pictures, some of which will require a fee. Accessible bathrooms are also available at many beach parking lots.
Also in Malibu, on Malibu Canyon Road off PCH is where the University of Pepperdine is located. This is also a way to the 101 Freeway.
A number of restaurants exist along PCH in Malibu and have great views, which makes for a lovely outing. Duke’s and Gladstone’s are two of the more famous restaurants though there are many to choose from.
Getty Villa Museum
In the Santa Monica Mountains of Malibu overlooking the coastline is the Getty Villa. The museum gets its name because it is a replica of a villa in Italy. The architecture, pools, and gardens are reason enough alone to visit this destination. However, the Getty Villa in Malibu also holds a world-class collection of paintings and artifacts. Self-guided tours are available with headphones or you have the option of listening to a live tour guide.
The marble tile walkways allow for an extremely smooth surface to glide over. This kind of paved walk walkway continues all around the property, inside and out. Elevators to the second floor and cafe are marked but there is helpful, friendly staff willing to get you in the right direction. Wheelchair accessible restrooms are available around the property. Some areas around the gardens and pools are at a slightly lower level but ramps are usually available off to the side, so look around or ask one of the staff.
Admission is FREE but requires a ticket purchased in advance and parking costs $10, which is accessible, so call in advance to arrange. Do not expect to get in by just showing up. Multiple accessible parking spots are available in the parking garage as well as even closer to the entrance. Ask the attendant at the gate for special access to this specific area; you cannot access it without approval.
Shrine Lake is a free meditation garden in Malibu. It is free because the Shrine Lake is funded by the Self-Realization Fellowship, an international nonprofit society founded by Paramahansa Yogananda in 1920 to introduce to truth-seekers of all races, cultures, and religions techniques of mediation for attaining the direct personal experience of God. However, donations from visitors that find peace and serenity here are graciously accepted to maintain the property and provide free meditative services and of course, are tax-deductible.
It is a common spot for locals to get away from their busy lives and ground themselves in the truth. Surrounding the lake is a pathway made up of primarily packed dirt and granite. The beginning and end of the loop is a hill, which requires battery or muscle power. The focal point of Shrine Lake is a temple arch, signaling one of the resting places for Ganhi’s ashes. All along the pathway nestled in the garden plants are meaningful quotes regarding the relationship with God as well as benches and other resting places to ponder these divine messages.
If you start on the path to the left you almost immediately start with The Court of Religions, which is a space on the grounds which honors the five principal religions of the world. Paramahansa Yogananda insisted on the display saying, “We must recognize the unity of mankind, remembering that we are all made in the image of God. There must be world brotherhood if we are to be able to practice the true art of living. This shrine is dedicated to all religions so that all may feel the unity of a common faith in the Fatherhood of God.” Continuing along the path to the left, you will then pass the Windmill Chapel, which is open on the weekends. The picturesque windmills are an authentic reproduction of a 16th-century Dutch windmill.
In 1996 a 58-foot high, 4,000-square-foot temple opened that rest above Lake Shrine was crowned with a golden lotus. This was the last wish of the founder Paramahansa Yogananda finally realized. The exquisite beauty of the temple is a blend of Western and Eastern architectural styles with hand-crafted details. Lectures and mediation services in the temple can hold 400 people and are conducted by the monks that live at Lake Shrine as well as those from other Self-Realization Fellowship monastic communities.
- Hours: Tuesday through Saturday 9am-4:30pm and Sunday from 12:30pm-4:30pm. Closed on Mondays, holidays, and occasional Saturdays or really rainy days.
- Inspirational Services: Sunday at 9am and 11am as well as Thursday at 8pm
Mediation Services: Sunday 6:30-9:30pm and Friday 7:30pm-9:30pm
Windmill Chapel: open Saturday 9am-4pm and Sunday 12-4pm but also occasionally closed for special services
- Handicapped Parking: Available during visiting hours and 45 minutes before services
- Restrooms: No accessible restrooms are available at Shrine Lake
- Museum & Gift Shop: Not wheelchair accessible