Hollywood Walk Of Fame
The Hollywood Walk of Fame is not as great as you would imagine and some may say a little over-rated. However, it is still always at the top of everyone else's to do list so you may as well cross it off the list too. Get to Hollywood Boulevard first thing in the morning so you can find a park easier and beat the crowds. You will probably only need to spend an hour or two here. You can check out a few of the celebrity stars and quickly get a few photos in front of the Chinese Graumans' Theatre. Madam Tussauds world famous wax museum is also a must see for fans of celebrity culture. Other than that there is nothing else here besides shopping and touristy knick-knacks. If you have kids they will love the costumed characters that they are able to get their photo's taken with. Just remember it is customary to tip them afterwards.
In and Out Burger
If you are feeling a little peckish head to In and Out burger which is only 3 blocks down from Hollywood Boulevard on Sunset. No visit to California is complete until you have eaten at this tasty establishment. Unlike most other fast food restaurants, In and Out use fresh ingredients and you can definitely taste the difference. And you MUST order the 'animal fries' which is a secret item that is not displayed on the menu board. Be warned though, there is usually a huge line up at this location so it may take awhile to receive your meal.
Head out to Griffith Observatory after the Walk of Fame because it's in the same area roughly. The observatory is fascinating if you are interested in space and astronomy. It is a nice drive up to the observatory and you will have great views of the Hollywood sign. There are also great views of downtown L.A (when the pollution levels aren't too high). The down side is this place is really busy and finding a parking spot is difficult! Be prepared to walk uphill if you don't find a park close enough.
La Brea Tar Pits
The La Brea Tar pits are on Wilshire Boulevard and enroute to Rodeo drive so worth stopping to have a look and will only take 10 minutes of your time. Tar pits form when crude oil seeps to the surface through fissures in the Earth's crust. These tar pits contained some of the best preserved, and best studied assemblages of Pleistocene vertebrates. It is pretty interesting to watch the tar pits bubble up. If you have children they will enjoy looking at the Wooley Mammoth statues. There is also a natural history museum here that is worth visiting if you have an extra hour to spare that the kids will love.
The Grove is a an outdoor mall with a beautifully designed outdoor space. There are trendy boutique stores, musical fountains, plush movie theatres and a free outdoor trolley to amuse the kids. The Farmers Market is nearby and is a great place to have lunch with many food choices in the food court.
Ever since the television show 'Beverly Hills 90210' aired Rodeo Drive has been put on the map of places that are a must to visit. Rodeo Drive is probably the wealthiest and most famous shopping district in the world. It is just as you see on television; filled with super classy, high end stores and a lot of Mazzerati's, Bentleys, Ferrari's and Lamborgini's parked along the street. It is worth a visit and should probably on take an hour. Unless you actually can afford to shop here.
Since you are in the area you may as well go for a little drive through the residential area of Beverly Hills and surrounding suburbs. The houses are INCREDIBLE! The homes of countless movie stars and TV personalities line streets such as Roxbury drive, Carolwood drive, Bedford drive, Crescent drive and Benedict Canyon drive. Visit our Los Angeles Sightseeing Tours page if you would prefer to organize a guided tour of Beverly Hills.
Finish your afternoon at Venice Beach. Venice beach is a one of a kind place. There are buskers, street stalls, skateboarders, punks, people handing out recreational marijuana cards and other types of highly entertaining people to watch. Highly recommended is hiring a bicycle and going for a ride on the boardwalk or go down to the beach and watch the sunset.
Santa Monica Pier
The Santa Monica pier is another famous Los Angeles landmark. The pier is all about having fun on rollercoasters, riding the ferris wheel and playing arcade games. End the night here when the rides are all lit up. Eat a burger or chow down on clam chowder for dinner at one of the many restaurants.
Now that you have gotten all the main touristy things out of the way, you have the whole day to do or see things that you love. Whether it be relaxing on the beach, visiting art galleries, shopping or dining, L.A will not disappoint. Here are my recommendations below. Choose one or possibly two activities below and enjoy!
If you are looking forward to a day of relaxation after yesterday's efforts why not spend the day at the beach. The beaches in and around Malibu are stunning and so are the homes. Beaches here are a lot less crowded than the Santa Monica area too. Bring a book and work on your tan. Go for a walk and see the multi million dollar homes. If you're hungry go to Malibu country mart where you are likely to bump into a celebrity or two.
WATCH A TAPING OF A LIVE TV SHOW
This was one of my favorite activities. We saw an episode of 'The Odd Couple' starring Matthew Perry. It was really cool to see how they film a live TV show and a lot of fun! The tapings can take several hours so be prepared and have a big lunch before hand. They do offer free sandwich's and hand out little treats if it is taking longer than expected. The best part is it's free! If you think this is something you might like to do click here to order a ticket online.
If you are a thrill seeker, seek your thrills at Six Flags. With so many terrifying rollercoaster options where do you begin? Some of the options include the X-treme (a rollercoaster where you ride backwards) or the Tatsu (which you ride face down during a set of drops, corkscrews, and zero G rolls). There are also a lot of family and smaller child friendly rides so everyone will have fun. This place is a must!!! Six Flags is located in Santa Clarita (about 45mins from downtown L.A.) so you will either need to hire a car and drive yourself or you can organize a tour bus to take you there and bring you back which includes the cost of entry. If you are interested in this option click here to learn more.
If you love the magic of movies you will love Universal Studio's. Have yourself an action packed day riding movie-themed rides, go behind the scenes on a real studio lot or just watch some of the highly entertaining shows. This place is fun no matter how old you are. To find out the cost of ticket prices go to our L.A. sightseeing page to learn more or click here.
THIRD STREET PROMENADE
Third street promenade is in Santa Monica and as the name suggests it is three blocks down from the beach. The Third Street Promenade is an upscale shopping, dining and entertainment complex where you can shop 'til you drop or spend the day lunching and sipping on margarita's.
TRANSPORT IN LOS ANGELES
To visit and sight-see in Los Angeles you really need a car because the city is so big and taking public transport can take a lot of travel time - therefore we recommend renting a car! We have previously rented through Avis because their rates are good and because you can pick up your vehicle from LAX airport and drop-off anywhere in the city. See Avis car hire rates from LAX. You save around 30% if you book online.
If you don't like the idea of driving the busy streets and crazy highways of L.A. then you can take a hop on hop off bus around the city at your leisure to sight-see, OR choose a tour of places of interest to you. See our top tour picks below:
ACCOMMODATION IN LOS ANGELES
Accommodation in L.A. can be expensive! If you want to search for the best rates check out Bookings.com who have value deals of the day. They also do not require a booking deposit and there are no cancellation charges if you change your mind.
If you are on a budget try looking for a room or vacation rental with Airbnb, there are so many to choose from in Los Angeles. If you sign up through thislink you will receive $40 credit off your first stay. Otherwise read this article on where to find budget accommodation in L.A.
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Two Aussies road-tripping across the USA. Our goal is to discover America's wild places and vibrant cities... and make the most of every moment. Read more