Sunken City – San Pedro, California

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In 1929 a landslide caused a community of homes to sink into the ocean. What remained was broken sidewalks and cracked roads. All of which have become a canvas for graffiti artists and a place to hang out for the adventurous.Sunken City, San Pedro, California - A hidden gem in Southern California and should be on the top of your places to see when visiting California!

Sunken City is located in San Pedro, California (near Long Beach) and is fenced off with a “No Trespassing” sign. When I realized that you weren’t really allowed to go there, I kind of questioned it a bit. But once you see the pictures, you’ll understand why it was necessary that I went.Sunken City San Pedro California 12Sunken City San Pedro California 9

Hopefully I won’t get into some sort of legal trouble for this post.Sunken City San Pedro California 3Sunken City San Pedro California 7

I can see why it’s blocked off though. It looks a bit dangerous and if people aren’t careful they can easily slip and fall over the cliffs.Sunken City San Pedro California 1Sunken City San Pedro California 4

So, how do you get there? It’s located next to Point Fermin Park so you just park your car over there and the city is to the left. You’ll see a huge fenced off area immediately, but don’t worry there is a way to get inside it that doesn’t look dangerous (which we discovered after we had already gone through the hole that someone created under the fence).Sunken City San Pedro California 16

So instead of parking your car and running in excitement towards that fence, what you do is you go around the houses and walk on Shepard St. and then turn right onto South Carolina St. and you’ll see a fence there too. Someone created a dent in it big enough for people to enter.Sunken City San Pedro California 11

(You’re welcome!)

Make sure that you wear closed toe shoes for this adventure because as you can see there are a lot of ups and downs and things you can climb and slide off of. But once you are there, get ready to enjoy all the beauty. The Pacific Ocean, the random palm trees that still stand tall and the colorful pieces of concrete all around you.Sunken City San Pedro California 5

When we were there, one artist was painting in front of us and it was really cool to watch. Check him out on Instagram, he’s got some neat work!Sunken City San Pedro California 8Sunken City San Pedro California 10

Our favorite spot was by this drawing of a boom box.Sunken City San Pedro California 14Sunken City San Pedro California 13

It’s kind of extraordinary how something tragic eventually turned into a huge piece of art. If you are ever in Southern California or live there, you have to check this place out. It’s so unique and a fun escape. Plus, I think they are trying to get it to open to the public. So fingers crossed!Sunken City San Pedro California 15



  1. During my brief stay in SoCal in early December, I really wanted to go here! Alas, it didn’t work out, but I’m so glad I got to see your photos of the space. Maybe next time I make it back to California.

  2. Love these photos!!! And I love Sunken City because I live in SAN PEDRO, California. 😉 And I go there to take sunrise or sunset photos often. Either take a long walk from Cabrillo Beach Pier or go down from Point Fermin. Check out my Instagram feed, 500px, Flickr or ViewBug photos if you’d like.

    • Thank you! I discovered this place in my recent visit to California and absolutely loved it! You are so lucky to be living there! I will definitely check out all your photographs, thank you!

      • San Pedro is one of the rare peninsulas where one gets to see both sunrise and sunset over the horizon on the same day without traveling. I usually go out for the sunrise. 🙂 But, of course, the mountains are calling and I know my heart belongs to the mountains… LOL 🙂

  3. Yes, this is one of the best spots in SoCal! I don’t think they will ever officially open it to the public because it’s not seismically safe and the city doesn’t want to get sued, but it’s kinda like a sly wink-wink-nudge-nudge thing. Everyone knows people go down there and no one really tries to stop them. I’ve wriggled under the fence with a police cruiser not 100 yards away and they didn’t do anything 😛

    • tayonthemove Reply

      Haha, yea this place is definitely worth seeing even if it means breaking a rule or two! 😉

  4. Great post! Just a heads up: as of July 2017, the gap in the fence on South Carolina Street has been filled in with an additional bar, so it’s not possible to get through that way anymore. 🙁

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