Santa Monica – Bergamot Station
One of Santa Monica’s best kept secrets is located right in the center of the city and yet many locals don’t even know it exists. Bergamot Station is an amazing complex of art galleries located in an old industrial park right off of the north side of the 10 Freeway. It is about eight acres of gallery after gallery, making it Southern California’s largest gallery complex.
Back in the late 1800’s Bergamot Station was in fact a train depot for the Red Line trolley which ran from Los Angeles to the Santa Monica Pier. After housing several other businesses over the years, including and ice-making plant and a water heater factory, the site lay vacant for many, many years. In the mid 1990s, its rebirth gave way to a fantastic center for artists.
Bergamot Station houses over 30 galleries including the Santa Monica Museum of Art. The Santa Monica Museum of Art fosters diversity, innovation, and discovery in contemporary art—local, national, and international through its exhibitions, education, and outreach programs. The complex also has a nice little cafe, which means you can spend an entire afternoon wandering from one gallery to the next, enjoying a wide variety of art forms!
Small bonus side-note: Parking and admission is free!