I don’t really have a guide of what to do and see in LA because it’s such a big city (LA and then it’s outlying suburbs), that I haven’t explored as much as I’d like to. I will share places that I have gone to and places that I’d like to eventually go to. But first lets drive down the beautiful Pacific Coastline from the Bay to LA.
Warning: Lots of photos in this post.
Malibu is right beyond that hill and around that fog.
Sun set along the Pacific Ocean.
The hubs and I are suckers for a good view. In Barcelona, we went to both Park Guell and Mount Tibidabo just to see the city and the coastline from up top. In LA, you can go to a number of places such as Runyon Canyon, Griffith Observatory, Mulholland Drive, etc. However, there will be days where smog and/or fog cover the city and the view will becomes hazy, like most of the days we went. Our friends told us the best day to these places is the day after it rains as the sky is clear and you can see the beach from these locations. Bummer we couldn’t see the city on a clear day.
From Runyon Canyon
From Griffith Observatory
Downtown LA amongst the smoggy haze and fog
Prior to this trip we had yet to explore Santa Monica. We were hoping to stop by here during our 2008 trip, but didn’t get a chance to. Again, LA is so big and there are SO many things you can do that 2 days here isn’t enough to do everything you’d like. So we stayed here this trip hoping we could enjoy the beach, but unfortunately the weather wasn’t great. It was foggy and chilly most of the time (almost like we were in the bay and oddly enough, it was warm in the bay that weekend and chilly in LA. just our luck). It’s a cute touristy beach town, but still with that shopping aesthetic. Venice Beach, Malibu, and Pacific Palisades are neighboring, so you could always drive down Ocean Ave or the PCH and visit these beaches as well. I’m sure it gets crazy packed in the summer though.
View of the Santa Monica beach from Ocean Ave
At the Boardwalk. I feel like I should be listening to some Beach Boys whenever I’m on a boardwalk or just because I’m on the Santa Monica Pier.
Get your kicks on Route 66.
LOVE the beach, even if it was freezing!
Last day in Santa Monica and we can finally see the water and the pier from our hotel balcony!
Definitely walk the Third Street Promenade while at Santa Monica for some shopping, eating, drinking (coffee, tea, smoothies, or alcoholic beverages), or even watch street performers.
We even saw Naia from The Voice singing.
Another place to visit for the fashionistas and shopaholics? Santee Alley/Fashion District. It’s similar to Canal Street. Cheap jewelry, clothes, shoes, etc. This is where I snapped up some cheap jewelry finds.
Other shopping places to go to? Melrose Trading Post, which is open every Sunday. Here you can find vintage clothes, antique furniture, jewelry, etc. Other flea markets that you can go to are Rose Bowl and Pasadena City College. I haven’t been to the last two as these happen on the first and second Sundays of the month. Other places to shop are the famous Rodeo Drive, The Grove (where they film Extra and sometimes scenes from Modern Family), and Beverly Center.
Other things you can see or do in LA? These are places I’ve been to or would like to go to during a future LA trip.
Grauman’s Chinese Man Theater
Hollywood Walk of Fame
Knott’s Berry Farm
Six Flags Magic Mountain
Hollywood Murder Tour
Movie Stars Home Tour
LA County Museum of Art
La Brea Tar Pits
For food, you could always try food trucks, go to the Pink’s for some hot dogs, Roscoe’s, etc. OR go to celebrity hot spot restaurants like STK or Mr. Chow.