Lights, camera, action! Home to some of the world’s most well known film, fashion and music, Los Angeles is a destination that must be visited – even if just for a day. Whether you want to spend the day on one of the Golden State’s beautiful beaches or roam around the city’s trendy and gentrified downtown, LA has it all. Los Angeles is your favorite curated Instagram feed come to life.
Guest post by Angela Sterley
Blog: Destination Drifter
What’s the best time to visit Los Angeles?
Lucky for Angelenos and visitors alike, the weather is warm and sunny year-round. The summer months can become overly hot and crowded but autumn and spring create perfect temperatures and less of a tourist crowd. Winter rarely drops below 55 degrees Fahrenheit during the day so though it may not be ideal for lounging on the beach it is still comfortable weather for a day of sight-seeing. If you plan to make a stop at Downtown’s LA Live or stroll along the Walk of Fame in Hollywood it is recommended to check the award ceremony schedule to avoid attraction closures.
What’s good to know about Los Angeles?
Many main attractions such as the Walk of Fame and L.A. Live are not located within walking distance of each other. Los Angeles has a metro system between many of the main attractions and ride-share apps such as Uber and Lyft are commonly used throughout the city. Though Los Angeles was a city built for cars it is still easy to get around without renting one. Don’t worry about the weather, there is an average of 284 sunny days of the year in the City of Angels so your stay will likely be under the warm California sun.
One Day in Los Angeles Itinerary
Top things to do in Los Angeles, California
Follow this guide and make the best of your trip even if you’re short on time. These are the top sights and things to do on your one day in Los Angeles.
Start your morning at the end of Route 66 on the famous Santa Monica Pier. Take a stroll past the musicians and vendors or jump on the roller coaster in Pacific Park if you are feeling like a morning adrenaline rush. After taking in the coastal views head up to the Third Street Promenade for endless shopping or take a moment to take in the sunshine on the beach.
Rent a bike in Santa Monica and ride down the beach walk to Venice Beach. The boardwalk is lined with street performers, artists, restaurants, and shops. Venice is a haven for the artists of Southern California and attracts unique visitors from all around the world. A round-trip ride from Santa Monica with a walk down the Venice boardwalk will likely take approximately 2 hours.
After a morning on the coast hop on the Metro Expo Line in Santa Monica to Downtown LA.
Grab lunch at one of the many incredible downtown restaurants or accompany your meal with a drink at The Upstairs Bar on the rooftop of the Ace Hotel or at Perch if you are searching for a trendy hang out with city views. Downtown’s food scene includes indulging favorites such as the Mexican-fusion restaurant B.S. Taqueria and french restaurant and bakery Bottega Louie.
Avoid the notorious Los Angeles traffic and ride the Metro Red Line to Hollywood Highland. This drops you off directly at the Walk of Fame and Hollywood Highland complex which boasts views of the Hollywood sign, downtown, and numerous shops, restaurants, and attractions.
West Hollywood/Beverly Hills
After getting your fix walking along the stars take an Uber over to one (or all) of the iconic L.A. streets. Window-shop and spot Lamborghinis on Rodeo Drive, hunt through the vintage shops on Melrose, or throwback to the 1980’s rock scene on the Sunset Strip. But first, get your caffeine fix at the trendy cafe Alfred on Melrose. Eat among the stars and end your L.A. excursion dining in one of the many upscale West Hollywood restaurants.
Where to stay in Los Angeles?
Loews Santa Monica Beach Hotel
Loews Santa Monica Beach Hotel is a contemporary beachfront hotel Situated on the Pacific Ocean, offering dramatic views of the Pacific Ocean and beyond. The hotel features an on-site spa and a large oceanfront pool with a great lounge area.
Kimpton La Peer Hotel
Kimpton La Peer Hotel is a luxurious five star hotel, perfect for both business travel and leisure. Its luxurious atmosphere, first-class design and huge passion for detail make this hotel one of the best picks in the whole city.
LEVEL Furnished Living Suites Downtown Los Angeles
LEVEL Furnished Living Suites is a modern and stylish hotel located in Downtown Los Angeles, very close to Metro. It features fabulous facilities, well appointed rooms, heated outdoor pool, gym and even a basketball court.
HI Los Angeles – Santa Monica Hostel
If you prefer a stay in a hostel, or just want to meet other fellow travelers, HI Los Angeles – Santa Monica Hostel is a great choice for your stay in Los Angeles. The hostel provides a bike rental and features facilities such as pool and lounge areas.
Extra tips for visiting Los Angeles
– Be aware that if you choose to take a photo with the movie characters walking around on Hollywood Blvd. they will expect you to pay them.
– Downtown LA is located next to Skid Row – which is one of the United State’s largest homeless populations. Though it is completely safe to walk around in downtown it is best to stay between Figueroa St. and Los Angeles St. to avoid ending up in a dangerous situation.
– Street vendors and food trucks are a great way to try great LA cuisine for cheap. Most are cash only – come prepared!
– Skip the sightseeing vans in Hollywood. There are so many things to do in Los Angeles and it is not worth it to spend hours driving near celebrity houses that are often not even placed accurately.
– If you want to blend in with the locals it is best to dress for the seasons. Though the city certainly does not require a winter coat, Angelenos will be wearing cold-weather clothing in the autumn and winter no matter the temperature.
– Make your trip to Los Angeles even more exciting! Check out Tripadvisor for all the activities and organized tours in Los Angeles or around the area. Make sure to purchase your tickets to all the attractions right away to skip the queues.
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