Los Angeles is one of my favorite cities, so I’ve compiled my Top 10 List of what to do in LA. For first-timers, this vast urban sprawl can be overwhelming. When people visit LA for the first time it may appear cold, and I have heard countless travelers complain of a ‘coldness’ and a feeling that its not really a ‘city’ per se. It’s not! It’s a wonderfully diverse cosm, made up of villages, each with a distinct flavor.
This top 10 list of what to do in Los Angeles is for first-timers. This is my list of what I love in LA.
WILL DEFINITELY HAPPEN: You will see one of the most spectacular sunsets of your life! LA has the most beautiful sunsets in the world.
LOCAL KNOWLEDGE: Watch the sunset with an ice cold beverage from ‘The Whaler’ on Washington BLVD in VENICE BEACH. Don’t ask questions- just do it!
WILL PROBABLY HAPPEN: You will cruise up the PCH (Pacific Coast Highway) and visit Malibu. Great scenic drive plus the best beaches in Los Angels. Drive all the way to the county line and eat fresh seafood at Neptune’s Net.
PROBABLY WON’T HAPPEN: You will spot an A-list celebrity. A Kim Kardashian, a day-time soap star or other..maybe. But an A-lister you will not. As a tourist you probably want to spot your fave actor but you chances are you wont.
*LOCAL KNOWLEDGE: If you do want to spot a celebrity you will have to spend some mula and even then nothings guaranteed. BUT- Nobu Malibu is the spot, we have been here 4 times this year and everytime have seen at least 1 or 2 A-Listers so chances are you may too!
DEFINITELY WON’T HAPPEN: You will be discovered: Your mum always said you should be famous and you believe it. You think you should be the next Arnold Schwarznegger, Marilyn, Tom, Nicole or whoever. This wont happen in Tinsletown you WILL NOT be discovered- It’s not called the ‘Boulevard of Broken Dreams’ for nothing.
TOP 10 THINGS TO DO IN LOS ANGELES:
- Head straight to the coast and hire a bike. Ride along the bike path and discover Venice, Santa Monica and Marina del Rey. This is the best jet-lag cure. Get the body moving and see the famous Los Angeles Board Walk at the same time. Don’t miss the Venice Beach Freak Show..you know you wanna see that!
- Drive up the Pacific Coast Highway (PCH) and spend a day in Malibu at the beach. Eat at Nobu right on the PCH- guaranteed to spot a celeb if that’s what you’re in to. Malibu has better surf than most beaches in LA, especially in Winter
- Eat authentic Mexican food. LA actually used to be in Mexico! The Mexican culture and food are still strong today, with the proximity to Mexico, you cant get better Mexican in the world, unless you go to Mexico. Try Guelaguetza Restaurante Down Town LA is a worth a detour, this place offers authentic Oaxacan-style cuisine. My fave dishes are the mole and corn smut (trust me you need to try this).
- Watch the sunset with a cocktail or beer from The Whaler at Venice Beach. Countless movies have been shot here plus its the best sunset in LA. Los Angeles sunsets are an incredible vibrant orange, this coupled with palm trees makes for gorgeous pictures.
- Eat molecular gastronomy tapas at The Bazaar by Jose Andreas at the SLS in Beverly Hills. After a day of perusing Rodeo Drive and BH the molecular gastronomy tapas and cocktails will be exactly what you need. Jose Andreas is known as the Godfather of Molecular Gastronomy, he worked with Ferran Adria of famed El Bulli, you will see similarities in the style, namely the molecular signature: ‘Olives’
- Hike up to the Hollywood sign for a memorable pic. If you see A-frame signs that have been put up to block residential streets that state there is no access to ‘The Sign’ ignore that and keep going. These are public streets and you can access the sign people put up those signs to try to keep tourists out. They need to get a life and not live near a famous landmark if it bothers them!
- Night out on the Sunset Strip. Start at Bar Marmont for a quiet drink and make your way up the famous strip and visit the famous rocker bars like the Rainbow Room and Viper Lounge. The Roxy on Sunset has some great live bands, check out who’s playing ahead of your trip. Hotel Bars are trendy, but can be pricey. My top 3 hotel bars in LA are at the Chateau Marmont, The Mondrian (Sky Bar) and
- Go to Universal Studios. This may seem tacky but actually Universal Studios has some incredibly technologically advanced rides. Its a fun day out and well worth it. I have lived in Los Angeles and have taken many visitors here-all love it!
- Shopping on Melrose and Robertson Blvd. Robertson has the best boutiques in LA. Have lunch at The Ivy after you work up an appetite shopping.
- Go to the Catalina Wine Mixer. Ok, hate to break it to you, that’s not a real thing (sorry Step Brother’s fans)! However, you can take the Catalina Express over to Catalina Island and spend a day exploring the beautiful island and its beaches. If you can factor it into your budget charter a private yacht with friends.
I hope you’ve found my Top 10 List of what to do in LA useful, this list is a must do for someone who loves great food and wants to see more of what ‘real’ LA has to offer.