Santa Monica Pier

A New Sea Dragon Begins Its Rollicking Reign at Santa Monica Pier

The high-swing attraction replaced the older Sea Dragon, which recently "flew" away (courtesy of a heavy-duty helicopter).

Pacific Park

What to Know

  • The Sea Dragon ride opens at Pacific Park at Santa Monica Pier at 11 a.m. on April 7; admission to the park is free while rides are additional
  • The brand-new high-swing ride, which boasts a dragon head at both ends, replaced the older version, which will soon go on view at a St. Louis museum
  • Sea Dragon 2.0 has updated features such as LED lights and a custom soundtrack

All sorts of scale-covered critters regularly cruise by Santa Monica Pier, and we know they're out there, even if we can't quite see them swimming below the surf.

But when a colossal creature, a beastie known for being scaly in popular myth, suddenly appears at the world-famous destination and settles in for an extended stay, that is an unusual occurrence, for sure.

Sea dragons, though, have been seen in that part of Southern California before, dating all the way back to the mid-1990s.

Now there's a new Sea Dragon in town, or should we say Sea Dragon 2.0, as this is the second version of the high-swing attraction to appear at Pacific Park, the playland located near the end of the pier.

The first Sea Dragon flew away in March 2023, beginning the first leg of its journey to retirement at City Museum in St. Louis. (The "flew away" part came courtesy of a heavy-duty helicopter and not dragon wings, it should be noted.)

The time has now arrived for the regal reign of the second Sea Dragon to begin and begin, it shall, when the ride officially opens to the public on Friday, April 7.

Fans can expect the same thrilling swings and scream-summoning drops that the first Sea Dragon provided, thanks to that sizable 180-degree arc, but there are new features of note, like music made specifically for the ride, LED lights, and a "misting system" that simulates the sense you're sailing high above open water.

"We are delighted to open the all-new Sea Dragon to the public and expect guests to love it even more than its predecessor that recently retired after 26 years of service," said Nathan Smithson, Director of Marketing and Business Development at Pacific Park on the Santa Monica Pier.

"We know our guests had an unbridled enthusiasm for the original Sea Dragon and its incredible popularity prompted us to introduce the all-new Sea Dragon. We reimagined the ride experience while providing the same classic swing ride that guests know and love so well."

"We look forward to another three decades of fun memories with family and friends riding the all-new Sea Dragon."

If you have memories of the first Sea Dragon and want to share them via video or text, you can at this special Sea Dragon Memories page at the Pacific Park site.

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