Los Angeles is a diverse area that attracts millions of visitors each year. In addition to seeing the most popular sights, don't be afraid to step off the beaten path for an even greater experience in the City of Angels.
As the second-largest metropolis in the U.S., Los Angeles is full of entertainment, culture, media, fashion and sports. The weather is always beautiful in L.A. so there's never a bad time to visit, and its combination of past and present make it the perfect vacation destination for people of all interests. Whether you want to see celebrity homes or visit museums, you'll find something for everyone in the family to enjoy.
Los Angeles Attractions
Venice Beach is a world-renowned location in Los Angeles and full of all different types of characters including skateboarders, hippies and body builders. Travelers who are into people-watching will definitely want to spend an afternoon here. There are also top-notch eateries such as Figtree's Cafe. Aside from the eateries and thrilling personalities in Venice Beach, you can visit several other beaches in Los Angeles that are perfect for sunbathing or surfing in the Pacific Ocean. Manhattan Beach, Hermosa Beach and Santa Monica Beach are the most popular in Los Angeles for locals and tourists alike.
The 1984 Summer Olympics were held in Los Angeles at Memorial Coliseum, and there are still plenty of ways to experience sports and culture in the city today. You'll want to be sure to visit popular sites such as the Staples Center, Grammy Museum, the Museum of Contemporary Art and Historic Exposition Park. The Staples Center is home to the NBA's Los Angeles Lakers and Clippers, and also plays host to many of Hollywood's award shows such as the Grammys.
For a more low-key adventure in Los Angeles, try Angel's Flight, the world's shortest railway. This is a self-guided walking tour to the rail where you can then take the funicular car to the top of Bunker Hill near downtown. At the top of the ill you can enjoy views of the city's Historic Core and Jewelry District. Across from the flight is Angel's Knoll that offers an alternate view of the area and home to Tom's bench from the 2009 film "(500) Days of Summer."
The Griffith Observatory sits on the slope of Mount Hollywood in Griffith Park. When you visit the observatory you can catch views of Downtown, Hollywood and the Pacific Ocean. Visitors can see space and science-related exhibits at the facility that's been part of of Hollywood culture since 1896. The planetarium is a popular stop in the observatory that puts on shows covering topics such as the moon, solar systems and eclipses.
Things to Do in Los Angeles
Shopping: Rodeo Drive is one of the most popular shopping destinations in the world. Shops line the luxurious street where you will find many high-end designers such as Gucci, Chanel and Prada. There's more to shopping in Los Angeles than luxury labels, however. there are also a number of vintage stores for those who are in search of unique finds. The Fashion District has shopping centers including The Grove, Beverly Center, Hollywood and Highland, The Americana at Brand, Third Street Promenade and Santa Monica Place. There are also budget-friendly shopping outlets in neighborhoods such as Camarillo, the Citadel, Desert Hills and Ontario Mills for your inner bargain hunter.
Anderton Court Shops: The Hollywood Hills don't have to be at the top of your must-see list. The Anderton Court Shops, designed by Frank Lloyd Wright, are a must-see for architecture buffs. The structure is situated on Rodeo Drive between Dayton and Brighton ways, and features four levels of various boutiques. Those who want to see more L.A. buildings designed by Wright can hop on the Frank Lloyd Wright Tour of Los Angeles, a three-hour driving tour that takes you through the Hollywood Hills to his Hollyhock House and along Rodeo Drive.
Dining: Los Angeles is fast becoming a foodie mecca. The city has one of the most dynamic dining scenes you can find in the U.S. and offers a variety of options ranging from street food to 5-star restaurants. Every July the city hosts dineLA Restaurant Week that draws in vendors selling organic ingredients as well as food trucks. Famous chefs such as Wolfgang Puck, Thomas Kelly and Nobu Matshuhisa have restaurants in Los Angeles. You'll find global kitchens in Little Armenia, Thai Town, East L.A. and Old Pasadena, and for fine-dining look no further than the eateries located on the coastline.