I just overheard a woman telling her daughter, as they walked past our house, 'Hermosa Beach is an old beach town'.
I suppose everything's relative. But only in California, surely, would Hermosa be considered old. It was farmland up until just over 100 years ago and was incorporated as a city in 1907.
The woman's bold claim reminded me of this tourist map I picked up a couple of months ago. We were expecting an influx of visitors, including my parents, closely followed by my sister and her family. I wanted to be sure I had all 'things to do in Hermosa' bases covered.
As you can probably tell from the map, even at this size, there's not a lot of ground to cover. All of those blue and red dots are shops, gyms, bars and restaurants. The squares are historical sites. Not a tonne of them, are there?
murals painted in the 2000s, a 9/11 memorial, and the surfer's walk of fame which I believe was started in 2003. So far, so not very historic. Oh, and a windmill from 1903. So there is that, at least.
The thing is, Hermosa just isn't old enough: there haven't been many people living here for long enough to create any real (as in, old) history.
Fortunately for our guests, if you like wandering along the greenbelt, grabbing a coffee, and relaxing on the beach there is still plenty to do. So my parents were happy enough. And we found enough to amuse my sister, her surfer husband, and their 5 year old twins on the days they weren't driving to Disneyland or the California Science Center. On top of the beach, the strand path and the parks, there is Hermosa Beach fire station: children who ask nicely can look around, and will even be given a fire hat and a sticker. Now that's something they should put on the 'Sights of Hermosa' map.