Beat the heat with these summer retreats

As triple-digit temperatures arrive this summer,  here are a few things you can do to keep cool. 

This summer, we can expect to see the usual triple-digit temperatures. However, there is much more to do than sit in front of the AC or a fan to cool down. Here are five spots in southern California to cool down.

Boasting hype they claim is reserved only for 80s bands, Salt and Straw is just one of the places you can visit this summer to cool off. (Wikimedia Commons)

We’ve all had ice cream on a hot summer day before. Vanilla, chocolate, strawberry, take your pick. But for anyone who wants to try something new, Salt & Straw is for you. Their range of flavors is broad: there is Double Fold Vanilla, Chocolate Gooey Brownie, Arbequina Olive Oil or Pear and Blue Cheese. 

The Santa Monica pier is a popular location to visit over the summer due to its position on the ocean and the various activities it offers. (Wikimedia Commons)

While the Santa Monica Pier originally gained its reputation for being the best fishing spot in Santa Monica, it is known for its family-friendly activities, street performers, restaurants and stores. Access to the pier is free but places such as the amusement park cost money. The pier is, as the name suggests, on the beach, so if you want to cool off you can just hop in the ocean!

Located on the Santa Monica Pier, Heal the Bay Aquarium is home to over 100 local species and was founded to protect the animals that call the West Coast home. The aquarium boasts hands-on activities where you can touch sea life and experience educational programs. It’s right by the beach too, so it’s nice and cool. Adults (anyone 13+) can get in for only $10, while those 12 and under get in free, as long as an adult accompanies them. For groups of five or more adults, it’s $7 each and for 10+ children it’s $3 each.

All year round, you can head to Newport Landing for whale watching. In one 2-hour period, you can see giant blue whales, finback whales, gray whales or even dolphins. It’s breezy and a way to cool down, as it’s on the water. They have several options for cruises, with lengths ranging from two to two-and-a-half hours and prices ranging from $28 to $84.50.

Recently, we’ve all been heading back to movie theaters after a year of being stuck at home with our streaming services. For those who enjoy the cool open air, there is Cinespia, a Los Angeles-based organization showing classic films throughout the whole year. They have showings at many locations, including the Hollywood Forever Cemetery, which will surely make for a unique movie-viewing experience. Tickets range from $20 to $22, which includes a picnic beforehand. On-site parking costs extra.