Los Angeles has a lot to offer visitors. Here we share the 10 Best places to visit in LA, so you can plan your next trip.
An incredible city – there are my top things to do in Los Angeles. Attractions are spread across this expansive city so it may be worth hiring a car or using a Hop-on, hop-off sightseeing bus; especially if you want to visit Downtown LA or West Los Angeles.
Looking to get out of the city? Check out these perfect weekend getaways from Los Angeles or take a road trip to Palm Springs.
Best things to do in Los Angeles
Hollywood Boulevard & Walk of Fame
Perhaps not as glamorous as you were led to think, I actually loved staying in an apartment just off the Boulevard – its worn-out, tired look reminded me of the ‘Old Hollywood’ that you see in the movies. The Walk of Fame is popular for many (and the people posing for a picture becomes a slight trip hazard) whilst the bars and restaurants along the Boulevard make this area of town a great choice to stay in or spend an afternoon. If you only have 1 or 2 days in Los Angeles, this should be on your itinerary.
Iconic for LA, the Hollywood sign can be seen all over town. For that great shot, head to Griffith Park Observatory. It can be difficult to get up close to the sign so jump on a tour bus or drive to the various viewpoints around the city.
A production tour – Warner Brothers tour recommended.
As the filming location for many TV programs and movies, LA is scattered with the best production companies in the world with most accompanied with a tour open to the public. There are many options available but we chose Warner Brothers for our visit. Speak to your tour guide about which programs you love and they may be able to take you to see those sets. During our visit, we saw Ellen Degeneres’s show set, the office set for the TV program ‘The Mentalist’, and the famous Friends Coffee shop set as well as the Warner Brothers prop museum with Batman and Harry Potter props and costumes. The Warner Brothers VIP tour is included in the Go Los Angeles Card.
Nothing beats Disney’s original theme park in sunny California. Plan in advance to avoid overcrowded days and long queues. Make sure you check out the Disney restaurants like this Disneyland Princess breakfast. CityPass offers a great deal with entrance to Disneyland, SeaWorld and Legoland all included at a discounted price.
Universal Studios Hollywood
Disney’s biggest competition is Universal Studios Hollywood and you can’t go to one without visiting the other, especially if you love thrilling rides and behind-the-scenes-styled tours. Head to universal studios and visit the different areas themed after your favorite films and programs. The Simpsons area is a favorite of mine. The entrance fee is included in the Southern California CityPASS.
Griffith Park and observatory
The Famous Planetarium offers fascinating exhibits and live shows but the main reason so many people visit is for the great view of the Hollywood Sign.
Venice Beach and Canal District
Head to Venice beach to relax and enjoy some sun, sea and skates. Just a short walk from Venice Beach is the canal district; with beautiful houses and glistening waterways providing a peaceful stroll.
Santa Monica Pier
Ideal for a late afternoon or early evening visit, the Santa Monica Pier marks the end of route 66. The pier holds some cute boutique and souvenir stores alongside a few arcade and funfair rides. The Pier is also home to a variety of seafood restaurants although slightly pricey. Entrance to the Pacific Park and the Aquarium is included in the Southern California CityPASS.
TCL Chinese Theatre
An iconic landmark of Hollywood, head to Hollywood Boulevard to take a selfie outside the TCL Chinese Theatre. Keep an eye out for any scheduled film premieres to do some celeb-spotting.
This drive always reminds me of that ‘big mistake’ moment from Pretty Woman. Head to Rodeo Drive to do some window shopping and some celeb spotting or to just re-enact that scene (be warned you may get some odd looks).
What to pack
- No matter where we travel to, I always take these trusty hand sanitizer’s and a mini first aid kit.
- We love these toiletry bags (especially great for smaller bathrooms) and choose a laptop bag like this as our hand luggage.
- We keep our devices charged on long travel days with these lightweight battery packs and bring these worldwide travel adaptors on all our trips.
- I still struggle not to overpack so stick to using an expandable suitcase like these, over backpack and always take my trusty luggage scales to avoid being charged at the airport.
- We LOVE this camera for our travel photography.
- For a cheap, easy and compact camera, we use this to vlog and take photographs.
- We use this travel drone (but make sure to check drone laws in your chosen destination first).
- This is our favourite travel insurance because it covers so many activities and travel situations that could arise on longer trips but also offer year coverage.
REASONS TO VISIT LOS ANGELES • Creative Travel Guide
Wednesday 8th of July 2020
[…] to Los Angeles? Read our favourite things to do in LA and prepare for your theme park trips by reading […]
GRAND CENTRAL MARKET IN DOWNTOWN LA • Creative Travel Guide
Monday 26th of February 2018
[…] visiting Los Angeles, you’ve probably heard of the Walk of Fame, Santa Monica Pier, Venice Beach. The entire city, though, encompasses over 500 square miles. 500 […]
Saturday 24th of February 2018
It has been a while since last time I was in LA, but I have fond memories of the place. Santa Monica pier was definitely one of my favourite things to do. So many shopping stores and the amusment park <3 I also love Disney and Universal Studios... And now I want to go to LA again haha. Great list!
Tuesday 13th of February 2018
Great list. I was in Los Angeles and I really liked the city! For the first time I skipped the city centre as LA has so much more to offer around. I really loved the Warner Brothers tour! We had the best tour guide, he was dancing and singing or even remembering so many moments from many tv shows. Santa Monica pier was also pretty impressive, especially during the sunset. I did miss the Griffith park so I hope ill get to go back there one day!
Sunday 11th of February 2018
I visited LA 3 years ago and did pretty much everything on your list here except Venice beach and the Santa Monica Pier. All these places I've heard about so much, in movies and TV series. We had hardly 2 days in LA of which one went in Universal Studios and Disney so hardly gave us time to explore the rest of the places. I think I might need to return!