Ultimate LA Travel Guide

Navigating the City of Angels: Your Ultimate LA Travel Guide

Step into the pulsating heartbeat of Los Angeles, where the sun-kissed streets and iconic landmarks converge to offer an unparalleled experience. Welcome to “Navigating the City of Angels: Your Ultimate LA Travel Guide.” In this blog, we will highlight the best things to see and do in the famous Southern California city.

1. Universal Studios Hollywood

Universal Studios: Your Ultimate LA Travel Guide

If you’ve read our blogs, by now you know that we’re huge Harry Potter fans, so we HAD to go to Harry Potter World in Universal Studios Hollywood. It’s not as big as Universal Orlando, but it’s still a really great park. Besides Harry Potter World, another reason to go to Universal Studios Hollywood is because they’re the first U.S. amusement park to have Super Nintendo World! We were in Los Angeles a couple years ago before it opened, so we definitely will be back! Another must do while you’re at Universal Studios Hollywood is the studio tour. The Universal Studios Hollywood Studio Tour offers an immersive and behind-the-scenes exploration of one of the most renowned entertainment studios in the world. The adventure begins with a tram ride that takes you through the working movie studio, providing a glimpse into soundstages where blockbuster films and TV shows are produced. Knowledgeable guides share fascinating insights into the filmmaking process, revealing secrets and anecdotes about the industry. Overall, you won’t ever be disappointed going to Universal on your Los Angeles vacation!

Super Mario World

2. Venice Beach

Venice Beach in the summer

Venice Beach, located on the outskirts of Los Angeles, is a laid-back coastal haven with a distinct character. Its renowned boardwalk is a hub for many fun activities, featuring street performers, artists, and vendors. The iconic Muscle Beach gym adds a touch of retro charm, while the adjacent skate park buzzes with energy. Along the shoreline, the Pacific Ocean provides a mellow backdrop to the casual and carefree atmosphere. Quirky shops and casual eateries line the boardwalk, offering a relaxed and unpretentious experience for locals and visitors alike. For any beachgoers reading this, I highly recommend at least half a day at Venice Beach. There’s a reason Los Angeles is one of the best places to visit on the West Coast and a big part of it is its beaches!

3. Griffith Observatory

Another popular landmark to visit in Los Angeles is the Griffith Observatory! Sitting atop the hills of Griffith Park in Los Angeles, the Griffith Observatory stands as an iconic symbol of scientific exploration and celestial wonder. Offering breathtaking panoramic views of the city, the observatory is a haven for stargazers and astronomy enthusiasts. Its striking Art Deco architecture, coupled with the bronze statue of Astronomer James E. Webb, can be appreciated by any eye. Visitors can explore fascinating exhibits, including the Foucault Pendulum and Tesla Coil, gaining insights into the mysteries of the cosmos. The real star, however, is the telescope in the iconic dome, providing an unparalleled glimpse into distant galaxies. Whether by day, with the Hollywood Sign in clear view, or by night, under a blanket of twinkling stars, Griffith Observatory promises an immersive and educational experience at the intersection of science and nature.

4. Dodgers Game

Dodgers-Game

As a sports enthusiast, attending a Dodgers game at the iconic Dodger Stadium in Los Angeles was one of my favorite experiences. There is so much history in that stadium, which makes it a special place to be. The vibrant atmosphere starts outside the stadium with the scent of ballpark snacks wafting through the air. Inside the stadium, you can feel a different sort of energy and passion than most baseball stadiums. I have visited many baseball stadiums and I can say for sure, the fans in Dodgers Stadium care about their team and they are anticipating each and every pitch. The seventh-inning stretch, accompanied by the timeless tune of “Take Me Out to the Ballgame,” adds to the sense of tradition. Whether you’re a die-hard fan or a casual observer, a Dodgers game is an electric blend of sport, entertainment, and the timeless joy of America’s favorite pastime.

 

5. Crypto.com Arena (Staples Center)

Staples Center. Now named Crypto.com Arena

You can’t talk about Los Angeles sports without mentioning Crypto.com Arena. The Crypto.com Arena, formerly known as the Staples Center, stands as an iconic entertainment hub in the heart of downtown Los Angeles. This renowned venue, operated by AEG (Anschutz Entertainment Group), underwent a significant transformation in December 2021 with a name change following a major naming rights deal with the cryptocurrency exchange platform Crypto.com. The arena is not only a sporting coliseum, but also a premier destination for a diverse array of events, including basketball and hockey games, concerts, award shows, and more. Serving as the home court for the Los Angeles Lakers and Los Angeles Clippers of the NBA, as well as the Los Angeles Kings of the NHL, the Crypto.com Arena boasts an impressive seating capacity, making it capable of accommodating large audiences. Beyond its sporting events, the arena is equipped with modern amenities, luxury suites, and restaurants, providing a complete entertainment experience for visitors. Accessible by various means of transportation and centrally located, this venue continues to play a pivotal role in shaping the cultural landscape of Los Angeles.

6. The Groundlings Theatre

For a typical Los Angeles trip, The Groundlings Theatre might not be on someone’s radar, but it absolutely should be! We went to see a show, and it ended up being our favorite night in the city. The Groundlings, founded in 1974, is an improvisation and sketch comedy troupe that has become a legendary institution on Melrose Avenue in the entertainment industry. The theater has shaped the comedic talents of numerous celebrated names like Will Ferrell, Kristen Wiig, Lisa Kudrow, Conan O’Brien, Tyra Banks, Kathy Griffin, etc. All who have graced its stages honed their comedic prowess through the theater’s unique blend of live performances and innovative workshops.

7. Hollywood Walk of Fame

Hollywood Walk of Fame

When in Southern California, it is hard to resist making a stop at the Hollywood Walk of Fame and seeing the iconic Hollywood Sign. While it has cool sights, we’re also here to be honest to our readers. Hollywood, California was absolutely disgusting! It was very dirty and the smelliest place we’ve ever been. Overall, not a good experience! If you’re like us and need to see all the iconic spots, then you should definitely pay a visit, but if you’re not very interested in the first place, then we recommend skipping this stop. 

8. Disneyland California

Mickey Mouse in Disneyland

By now, you’re probably wondering “Where is Disneyland on this list?!” Well here you go! Located a little outside of Los Angeles in Anaheim, California, a day at Disneyland California is a joyful escape into a world of fun and nostalgia. From iconic rides to classic attractions, the park is a vibrant playground for visitors of all ages. As you explore, beloved characters like Mickey Mouse and Donald Duck come to life, creating picture-perfect moments around every corner. The aroma of popcorn fills the air, and the park’s lively atmosphere makes every step an adventure. Also, if you’re a fan of the hit movie Cars, you’ll love taking a walk in Radiator Springs in Cars Land! Whether you’re plunging into thrilling rides or enjoying the evening parade, Disneyland California offers a day filled with laughter, excitement, and cherished memories.

 

Overall, Los Angeles has much to see and do. Whenever you’re in a big city like this, it provides so many options for people of many different ages and interests. While by no means was it one of our favorite places we’ve ever been, we’d still recommend paying a visit once in your life!

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