The question „what to do in Los Angeles“ is asking almost everyone, who is about to visit this 18 million residents metropolis. Before I came there, I had high expectations and usually, when somebody has high expectations will end up disappointed. Fortunately, it didn’t happen to me in L.A. and there’s tons of things to do in Los Angeles and I guarantee, that you will go to sleep tired every night – because the L.A. is enormous big and tiring.
No matter where your hotel or hostel is, it will always be far from everything, but fortunately, there’s Los Angeles public transportation, that gets you everywhere. Just to mention, mostly locals with less money use it, since all Americans have cars :) but for me it doesn’t matter if I sit one hour on metro, or stuck in traffic jam.
LOS ANGELES WEATHER
The good time for visiting LA is any time during the year, since on January the temperature doesn’t go lower than 15 degrees Celsius (59 F) and doesn’t rise above 30 C (89 F) on August. Mostly sunny weather makes the Los Angeles great place to visit it any time you like.
1. RMS QUEEN MARY 1
Did you know, that the ocean liner, RMS (Royal Mail Ship) Queen Mary is based in Los Angeles, on the south – Long Beach? It could accommodate 1957 passengers and 1147 crew members, what is 3104 people on one ship. The single journey from British Southampton to American New York took 4 days, 4 hours and 12 minutes, what was the best time among all ocean liners of that time. The ship is not in service anymore and now it’s open for visitors to come, since the major part of it has been rebuild into the luxury floating hotel, where you can spend night for around 150 USD (pretty much, though). The ship itself is 311 meters long (Titanic was 269 meters long) and you can enter it even if you are not accommodated in the floating hotel, but you have to buy the entrance ticket.
To get there, take metro blue line and get off on Long Beach Transit Mall station, from there walk to the Aquarium Of The Pacific building, from where you can take free shuttle bus or just walk over the bridge, what takes around 30 minutes to get to the harbour.
2. SANTA MONICA BEACH
If you want to spend your day at the beach eating hot dogs, hop on the expo line light blue metro and get off on Culver City station, from where you have to take local bus. Buses depart from the platform right next to the metro station, but before boarding, you better ask the driver for directions. The beach is popular among surfers, since there are huge waves and you can rent surf basically everywhere. The water is way too cold just for swimming. Most of the Americans come here to sit at the beach and enjoy their food and music with friends. This place is popular for its pier, where the historical Route 66 ends. There are stalls with food or souvenirs to be found and you can watch seals from the back of this pier. There are shopping malls and nice promenade along the beach, popular Muscle beach, roller coasters carousels. If you come for the whole day, you will find a lot of things to do. Maybe you will spot some celebrities, as well. Recently I saw some pics of Justin Bieber chilling at Santa Monica Beach with Selena Gomez in news.
3. HALLIWELL MANOR
If you were fun of TV series CHARMED in 90s, which was about three witch sisters living in San Francisco fighting against demons, you can visit their popular red house in Victorian style called „Painted Ladies„. Although, according to the series, the sisters lived in San Francisco, but their house is actually located in Los Angeles. To get there, take red or blue metro line to the West lake/McArthur park and walk to the Caroll Avenue, which takes around 20 minutes from the metro station. You better take Google maps with you not to get lost.
Mind that the house is someone’s property and you can not just walk around their garden or staircase. Act appropriate, like the house was yours. You don’t want strangers to walk around your back yard, right? :)
4. UNIVERSAL STUDIOS
At the beginning of my trip, I didn’t want to visit Universal Studios of Los Angeles, since the entrance tickets cost around USD 80, what is pretty much, but fortunately I changed my mind. The visit of Universal Studios was probably the best spent time in the L.A. for me, since I have seen how big films were made, I got shocked by special effects and saw many spots I’ve seen in TV before – like the Wisteria lane (the street, where Desperate Housewives were filmed) or famous Bates Motel from Psycho horror. You can visit Simpson’s family, the Mummy’s temple, Transformers, Jurassic park and many more. You can buy day or more days ticket and spent there the whole day. I really recommend you to come and the money are totally worth it!
To get there, hop on the red metro line and get off on Universal/Studio city station, from where you will have to take free shuttle bus that departs right across the street. Just follow the crowd, you will not be the only one going there.
5. THE WALK OF FAME & HOLLYWOOD SIGN
Probably the most significant tourist attraction in L.A. is the walk of fame. For me it was just one huge disappointment. All right, I don’t have the clear picture of what exactly I was expecting, but this was pretty boring. All you see is crowds of tourists looking under their feet on stars and that’s it. There are plenty of shops, where you can buy clothes, shoes or souvenirs and actually, the only thing I liked was pubs with happy hours haha. Definitely go there, it is must-to-see in LA but don’t expect walking Britney Spears across of you.
From there, there’s nice view of Hollywood sign and you can walk towards to it. To get there hop off the red metro line at the „Hollywood“ station.
6. MEXICO DISTRICT
When I came to Los Angeles, I was very surprised how many Spanish speaking people live there. Everything is multilingual, both in English and Spanish and if happens quite often, that you meet people, who don’t speak English at all – just Spanish. If you want to live in L.A, you don’t have to speak English, really. While wandering around this city, we have discovered Mexican district on the S Alvarado street. There you can taste Mexican dishes, meet locals (Mexicans) and do some really cheap shopping. There were lot of stalls selling electronics, clothing (probably fakes) and many more. If you haven’t been to Mexico, visit S Alvarado street and walk towards to the city centre in the 7th street. If you want to buy something, Spanish lessons will come handy :)
Here you can see the Mexican/American contrast – simple Mexican district with tall skyscrapers in the background. That s LA.
Los Angeles is mostly business town, where the entertainment is understood as business. People come to LA to become Hollywood stars, but mostly they end up on the streets. L.A. is crazy and I haven’t seen more strange people anywhere in the world, than in the streets of Los Angeles and sometimes I really didn’t feel safe there. There are 18 millions people living there and you can recognize the variety of cultures everywhere you go. This is one of those cities you shouldn’t miss on you travels, but be prepared for everything, haha.
Milan Bardun – because it is better to travel, than to arrive