Have you noticed all the lists online lately? Me too! This recent trend has alerted me to the fact that I’m not alone in my love of lists. What’s even more fun than making a list? Crossing things off them, of course! It’s so satisfying!
In a city as vast as Los Angeles, on any given day, there are countless opportunities for tourists and non tourists alike. So many, in fact, it wouldn’t really be reasonable to try and list them all, so for the purposes of this list I’m drawing the line at 50* places.
50 Things to do in Los Angeles* (and Surrounding Areas)
1. DTLA Arts District
Location: 812 E. 3rd St., Los Angeles
The revitalization of Downtown Los Angeles (DTLA) is nothing short of amazing, especially the Arts District! Biking, street art, restaurants, shopping and more… I guarantee you’ll love it and with so much to see and do multiple visits are in order!
2. LA Art Tours – Graffiti/Mural Tour
Location: 533 Colyton St, Los Angeles
A walking tour of DTLA is the perfect way to view the city’s vibrant mural and graffiti scene and get the lay of the land. The tours are lead by the artist themselves, and you’ll not only be viewing amazing artistry, but you’ll learn all about the culture and lingo of these incredibly talented locals.
3. Pie Hole
Location: 714 Traction Ave Downtown Los Angeles
Whether you like it savory or sweet you’ll be guaranteed a unique and tasty treat at the Pie Hole, We love the DTLA location, but with 5+ locations throughout the greater LA area you have no excuses! I wish I could show you a photo of the pie, but It never lasts long enough to take a photo!
4. Walt Disney Concert Hall
Location: 111 South Grand Avenue, Los Angeles
If you’re a fan of architecture, the symphony, or both then you’ll want to consider a visit to the Frank Gehry designed Walt Disney Concert Hall. If nothing else it provides an amazing backdrop for those #Instagood pics!
5. The Broad Museum
Location: 221 S Grand Ave, Los Angeles
If you only have time to visit one museum while in LA, I highly suggest The Broad located in DTLA. Entry to the museum is free, and the collection is top notch! Do keep in mind that advance reservations are required.
6. Little Tokyo
Location: 115 Japanese Village Plaza Mall, Los Angeles
The Little Tokyo district in DTLA is the place to go for authentic Japanese dining, quirky shopping and a healthy dose of kawaii!
7. The Last Bookstore
Location: 453 S Spring St, Los Angeles
When I heard about that cool book seller in Downtown Los Angeles that not only sells books but sells them with flair, I just knew I had to go there! With social media on the rise, the appropriately named, The Last Bookstore, might well just turn out to be the last bookstore!
8. Canter’s Deli
Location: 419 N Fairfax Ave, Los Angeles
Canter’s, an LA institution, has been serving up their award winning pastrami sandwiches and other deli fare since 1931. Beyond pastrami, other favorites on my list are the Mish Mash Soup, and the High Hat, which is basically a cupcake married to a ding dong! Delicious!
Location: 709 N La Brea Ave, Los Angeles
No trip to Los Angeles would be complete without a trip to Pink’s a true LA institution! Famous for it’s chili cheese dog, Pink’s has been in the same spot on La Brea Avenue for 76 years and if the perpetually long line is any indication, it’s not going anywhere.
10. The Getty Center
Location: 1200 Getty Center Dr, Los Angeles
The Getty Center features American and European art from medieval times to the present. Not only is it considered an architectural masterpiece, but it’s surrounded by beautiful gardens and on a clear day the views of Downtown Los Angeles and the Pacific Ocean are spectacular.
11. Griffith Park Observatory
Location: 2800 E Observatory Rd, Los Angeles
A visit to the Griffith Park Observatory includes something for everyone! Fabulous views of Downtown Los Angeles and the Hollywood Sign, Hiking, The Halls of Space, a planetarium, and a cafe. Entrance to the Observatory and parking are free of charge.
12. La Brea Tar Pits
Location:5801 Wilshire Blvd, Los Angeles
Are you a history lover? Then you’ll love a visit to the La Brea Tar Pits! It’s hard to believe that at one time Wilshire Boulevard was once the home of dire wolves, saber-tooth cats, and mammoths, but It’s true! Of course that was 50,000 years ago, give or take a few thousand years…
Location: 5905 Wilshire Blvd, Los Angeles
The largest art museum on the West Coast, it would take multiple visits to see everything LACMA has to offer. Just try and walk by Chris Burden’s Urban lights without snapping a few photos.
14. Peterson Automotive Museum
Location: 6060 Wilshire Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90036
Los Angeles is famous for many things, but one of them is not waking! In fact, just the opposite and as the song says, “Nobody walks in LA!” If you’re a fan of cars, movies, or both, then The Peterson Automotive museum is a perfect for you!
15. Chandelier Tree
Location: 2811 W. Silver Lake Drive, Los Angeles
The Chandelier Tree, created by, Silver Lake resident and artist, Adam Tenenbaum is a magical piece of art which is located in his front yard! The tree’s restored chandeliers have been collected over time through donations, swap meet purchases and film sets. #instala
16. Hurry Curry of Tokyo
Location: 2131 Sawtelle Blvd, Los Angeles
If you’re looking for a unique Japanese cuisine experience Hurry Curry of Tokyo located in Japantown is the place! Get the White sauce I guarantee you won’t be disappointed!
17. Surf Lessons
Location: Santa Monica/Venice
Why not give surfing a try?! No matter if you’ve never been on a board before, sign up for a lesson and you’ll be popping up in no time! If I can do it, so can you!
18. The Grove
Location: 189 The Grove Dr, Los Angeles
If shopping is on your list, check out The Grove, not only is it home to many trendy shops and restaurants it also boasts one of America’s tallest Christmas Tree’s!
19. The Hollywood Sign
Location: Griffith Park, Los Angeles, CA 90068
One of the most iconic signs in the world, no trip to LA would be complete without at least a quick view of the Hollywood Sign. There are a number of viewing spots around town. One of which is the Griffith Park Observatory located in… Griffith Park.
20. Hollywood Forever Cemetery
Location: 6000 Santa Monica Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90038
The Hollywood Forever Cemetery, isn’t just the final resting place, of some of film and music’s most celebrated stars, Johnny and Dee Dee Ramone, Judy Garland, and Douglas Fairbanks to name a few, but it’s also a fun and quirky place to see an outdoor concert. Check the official website for the current season’s offerings.
21. Hollywood Walk of Fame
Location: Hollywood Boulevard between Gower and La Brea, Los Angeles
Everyone should visit The Walk of Fame, which runs 1.3 miles along Hollywood Boulevard between Gower Street and La Brea Avenue, at least once. There are more than 2,500 stars along the Walk and you’ll be sure to recognize a few of your favorites!
22. Mann’s Chinese Theater
Location: 6925 Hollywood Blvd, Los Angeles
If you’re already in the area visiting #21, make the most of your time and visit Mann’s Chinese Theater too! Attempting to fit my feet and hands into the many celebrity prints, which have been pressed into the courtyard floor is always a fun activity.
23. Santa Monica Beach Bike Path
Location: Santa Monica
The 22 mile long paved path stretching from the Pacific Palisades to Torrance is perfect for biking, running, skateboarding or just plain walking! Along the way you’ll find playgrounds, bike rentals, ice cream shops, burger joints and shopping.
24. Street Art Walk
Location: Santa Monica
Go on an art walk! Santa Monica is loaded with street art just waiting to be discovered! The photo above, located at Sidecar Doughnuts on 7th and Wilshire Blvd, is a piece by Bumblebeelovesyou, a local artist, and a favorite of mine! Other fun areas with a lot of street art are Main Street and Pico Boulevard, both of which are also loaded with fun shops and restaurants!
25. Sidecar Doughnuts
Location: 631 Wilshire Blvd, Santa Monica
Sidecar Doughnuts is our favorite donut shop on the Westside, and we’ve tried a few. Sidecar’s doughnuts are always fresh, tasty, and popular, so be prepared for a long line, and because your first choice will most likely sell out before you make it to the counter, choose a second. Don’t worry they’re all good!
26. Santa Monica Pier
Location: 200 Santa Monica Pier, Santa Monica
Yes, it’s very touristy, but everyone should visit the Santa Monica Pier at least once! Not only does it boast the only over water Roller Coaster in the world, but it also has an adorable little aquarium and an old fashioned carousel!
27. Santa Monica Beach
Location: Santa Monica
Santa Monica is the perfect family beach. It has everything you need for the perfect beach day! Soft warm sand perfect for sandcastle building, a pier complete with amusement park, and tons of nearby shopping and dinning!
28. The Original Muscle Beach
Location: Santa Monica
Just south of the Santa Monica Pier you’ll find the original Muscle Beach, which features loads of gymnastics equipment, the Chess Park and easy access to the Carousel. My boys and I have always enjoyed trying out all the equipment.
29. Tongva Park
Location: 1615 Ocean Ave, Santa Monica
Tongva Park is a lovely traditional park just south of the Santa Monica Place Mall on Ocean Avenue. Along with unique play structures, you’ll find beautiful gardens, fountains, and lovely ocean views.
30. Third Street Promenade
Location: 3rd Street between Wilshire Blvd and Broadway, Santa Monica
I’m always up for a stroll and some shopping! Just a short walk from the beach you’ll find world class shopping, restaurants and entertainment at the Santa Monica Place mall and on the pedestrian friendly Third Street Promenade.
31. Montana Avenue
Location: Montana Avenue, Santa Monica
Located just one mile north of Downtown Santa Monica, you could spend all day wandering in and out of the boutiques, coffee shops and restaurants located on Montana Avenue!
32. Menotti’s Coffee
Location: 56 Windward Ave, Venice
Get the Spanish Latte! I promise you won’t be disappointed when you taste this delicious coffee concoction! Seriously, what are you waiting for? Go there! Then take your coffee for a walk along the beach!
33. Venice Beach Ocean Front Walk
Location: Ocean Front Walk, Venice
Like the sign says, I ❤️ Venice, and not just for the cheap sunglasses and great people watching! No trip to Los Angeles would be complete without a visit to the great weird that is Venice!
34. The Wee Chippy
Location: 1301 Ocean Front Walk, Venice
Located just off Ocean Front Walk at Venice Beach, the Wee Chippy is a walk up fish and chips joint, owned by a Scottish fellow. The fish is great, but the chips are easily the best I’ve ever had. Anywhere!
35. Venice Beach
Location: Venice Beach, Venice
There’s nothing like the beach in Southern California, and when you throw in everything else that Venice has to offer you’ve got nothing short of paradise! Don’t forget your sunscreen!
36. Venice Beach Skate Park
Location: 1500 Ocean Front Walk, Venice
Skateboarding as we know it originated in Los Angeles, so it makes sense that there’s an awesome skatepark right on the beach. Grab your wheels and drop in for some fun, or be a happy spectator either way, all are welcome!
37. Venice Art Walls
Location: Ocean Front Walk, Venice
Just next to the Skatepark you’ll find the Venice Art Walls, where every Saturday and Sunday you’ll find them transformed by professional and amateur street artists alike! Feeling creative, grab a can and join the fun!
38. Abbot Kinney Boulevard
Location: Abbot Kinney Boulevard, Venice
One of the hottest streets in town! Many of today’s most sought after fashion brands have stores on Abbot Kinney, not to mention the many trendy bars and restaurants to choose from. #favoriteplaces
39. Rose Avenue
Location: Rose Avenue, Venice
Completely transformed in the past few years, Rose Avenue, is definitely worth a visit. Lined with one of a kind boutiques, restaurants and markets, there’s a little something for everyone!
40. Malibu Farm Pier Restaurant
Location: 23000 Pacific Coast Hwy, Malibu
Stay cozy inside on a stormy day or eat out when the sun is shinning, either way the Malibu Farms Pier Restaurant is the perfect little breakfast spot! Locals only! Just kidding, but do check this place out if you’re looking for something a little less touristy.
41. The Getty Villa
Location: 17985 Pacific Coast Hwy, Pacific Palisades
Located on the Pacific Coast Highway in Malibu, the Getty Villa is dedicated to the antiquities and features 7000 years of ancient art. Even if antiquities aren’t your thing, The Villa itself is a site to see.
42. Zuma Beach
Location: Zuma Beach, Malibu
The drive to Zuma, along the Pacific Coast Highway, is spectacular in itself, and when you get there… Sun, sand, and surf. Need I say more?
43. Solstice Canyon
Location: 3455 Solstice Canyon Rd, Malibu
Hiking options in Solstice range from easy to difficult, making this a great destination for families and pets! There’s a waterfall, gorgeous views, and even an architectural landmark, all waiting to be discovered.
44. The Beverly Hills Sign
Location: 9439 N Santa Monica Blvd, Beverly Hills
You’ll know you’re in Beverly Hills when you see THE Sign! A lovely and iconic place to take a photo!
45. Rodeo Drive
Location: Rodeo Drive, Beverly Hills
First timer or resident, there’s something special about a stroll down Rode Drive.
46.The Love Wall (Wall Hopping)
Location: 8549 Higuera St, Culver City
The Love Wall located at Smash Box Studios in Culver City is just one of the many popular wall murals throughout Los Angeles. Your trip to LA is made all that much more colorful when you include one these fun pieces of street art in the background of all your social media posts! #instala
47. Warner Brothers Studio Tour
Location: 3400 W Riverside Dr, Burbank
Los Angeles, is the home of movie magic, which also makes it the perfect place to find out how all that magic happens! During your visit to the Warner Bros Studio Lot you’ll get behind the scenes peeks into many of your favorite television shows and movies both old and new!
48. Universal Studios Theme Park and Studio Tour
Location: 100 Universal City Plaza, Universal City
Universal Studios is not just a theme park, but a working movie studio as well! We love the Studio Tour, which is full of fun surprises, and of course there’s Butterbeer!
49. Disneyland Theme Park
Location: 1313 Disneyland Drive, Anaheim
They don’t have call it the Happiest Place on Earth for nothing! Yes, it’s crowded, yes, it’s expensive, and yes, despite those things I absolutely love the Magic Kingdom. Checkout my tips and tricks for a successful visit to Disneyland.
50. Huntington Library and Gardens
Location: 1151 Oxford Road, San Marino
The Huntington Botanical Gardens, has something for everyone! Museums, a library and acres of beautiful and unique gardens, including a fabulous children’s garden!
Living here gives us access to all the amazingness that LA has to offer, however, our family, like many others, often struggles when it comes to deciding how to spend our free time. lucky for us, Los Angeles also happens to be one of the most popular tourist destinations in the world, so hopefully, now that we’ve got this handy list all our problems, and maybe yours, will be solved!
* As fast as we “check things off” we think up more fun and interesting ideas, so stay tuned for 50 More Things To Do in LA coming soon…
*Be sure to check official websites for operating hours and ticket prices.
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