If your dreamiest LA day involves gypsy dresses, The Mamas & the Papas playing, and homeopaths hiking barefoot on a forest trail — then get yourself out to the Topanga Canyon wilderness, stat.

Folks from rural towns may not believe it, but Topanga is considered downright remote by LA standards — a good or a bad thing, depending on who you ask. Many come here to escape the urban sprawl, get in touch with their inner flower child, or just breathe in some real fresh air.

Sandwiched between Malibu to the south and Calabasas to the north, you’re still only 15 minutes from civilization in either direction, even when it doesn’t quite feel like it.

We spent our day frolicking between organic cafes, sitting amongst the trees, and marveling at how peaceful the whole place felt. So roll down your car windows, play some 70s folk rock, and embrace the all-natural side of Topanga.

Stop 1: Cafe Mimosa

This woodsy cafe nook was the perfect spot to start our day. We ordered unsweetened hemp milk lattes (what else?) and cozied up under the trees outside on the patio. Many of the inside patrons appeared to be regulars, leafing through books or having quiet conversations over vegan and gluten-free fare.

We hear the smoothies are practically famous, and the tamales are home-made.

(395 S Topanga Canyon Boulevard, Topanga)

Stop 2: The Topanga Table

The Topanga Table brings real meaning to the term “local” — the eggs and produce come from a few miles away and the wood tables were built by a Topanga-based artisan. We enjoyed every single California stereotype at this stop, enjoying a winter brunch outdoors on the screened patio, and ordering a green smoothie bowl with quintessential avocado toast.

The prices are un-LA, the food is delicious, and the space is idyllic. What more could you ask for?

(1861 N Topanga Canyon Boulevard, Topanga)

Stop 3: Hidden Treasures

Why, oh WHY, did we not find Hidden Treasures BEFORE Halloween this year?! This wildly eclectic vintage shop has every single thing you need for the most fantastic costume party you could ever imagine — fur hats, sparkly vests, military uniforms, glitter pants, Mexican throw blankets. It’s like rummaging through your grandmother’s attic, if your grandmother was Iris Apfel.

Give yourself some time in Hidden Treasures: it’s a playground of whimsical and far-out items, not to be rushed (lest you miss something!) We’re planning a themed costume party as soon as possible, JUST so we can come back and shop here.

(154 S Topanga Canyon Boulevard, Topanga)

Stop 4: Bouboulina

Feeling like you need some bohemian threads to fit right in during your Topanga adventure? Then venture on to Bouboulina, a shop owned by a mother-daughter duo that’s been around since the early 1980s and is best known for its Native American jewelry and vegan hand-dyed tie-dye pieces. We walked out with some colorful earrings and a flowing floor-length dress, but could have done a whole lot more damage.

(108 N Topanga Canyon Boulevard, Topanga)

Stop 5: Inn of the Seventh Ray

If you know only one place in Topanga, it’s most likely this one. Inn of the Seventh Ray is famous for its rustic beauty and gorgeous outdoor space, with white twinkle lights strung through the branches of rambling trees. This is the restaurant for romance and all of the Topanga vibes.

Before we sauntered into the restaurant, we made sure to stop inside the adjoining Spiral Staircase bookstore, with its new age books and crystals galore.

After flipping through some books on Buddhism and self-help, we walked a few feet to the Inn. The atmosphere there is near-perfect, but we’ve always preferred to simply enjoy a drink alongside the creek. On this day, we ordered two glasses of rosé, along with a shrimp and coconut milk ceviche which were pretty darn delightful together. Long gazes and fluttering eyelids included.

(128 Old Topanga Canyon Road, Topanga)

Stop 5: Shopping Along Topanga Canyon Boulevard

There’s a slew of adorable and one-of-a-kind homeware boutiques along Topanga Canyon Boulevard, and it’s easy to access them all on foot (just be careful when crossing the street!) Each shop has a good mix of vintage and modern pieces, along with lots of handmade jewelry, rugs, and pillows. If you wanna take home that Topanga aesthetic, you’re sure to find just the right items here. Don’t forget the sage.

The Details:

Getting out to Topanga may require a car (a convertible is preferable!) but once you’re there, everything is very walkable. Just be careful of traffic on Topanga Canyon Boulevard and don’t miss the Great Wall of Topanga (address is officially 1136 N Topanga Canyon Rd, but you really can’t miss it – on your right hand side driving east on Topanga Canyon)!

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