Los Angeles is one of those cities that you cannot define. Here you find suburbs to walk through to soft beaches and luscious hills. Not only do you get magnificent views, but it is also a hub filled with culture, theme parks, and great fun.
You can spend your day at a museum or devote your time to do studio tours seeing the places made available on TV and movies. Perhaps you can dig a bit deeper and discover the best taco trucks or even the next celebrity comedy star.
A fact is that there are loads of things to do in California, Los Angeles. Therefore, if you are planning a trip to California, we have the 50 best things to do in Lost Angeles on the list here!
Things to Do in Los Angeles
1. Hollywood Forever Cemetery
Behind Paramount Studios, you get the answer to Père Lachaise or the Highgate. Here you can pay your respects to the Golden Age of Hollywood. Among some of the names are Rudolph Valentino, Jayne Mansfield, John Huston, Douglas Fairbanks, Mickey Rooney, and Cecil B. Demille.
You can enter the graveyard free and can even get a map to roam around the cemetery. If you are stuck, the caretakers are more than willing to help. You can also get some background about the grounds from the caretaker.
Furthermore, the Hollywood Forever Cemetery has loads of culture to offer from outdoor movie screenings, literature events, and live podcast recordings.
2. The Getty Center
In Brentwood, you find the J. Paul Getty Museum. There is a lower car park linked by a hovertrain. Furthermore, you will find the architecture mesmerizing created by Richard Meier. Here you can find the Cactus and Central Garden with outdoor sculptures and fantastic art collections inside as well. If you are an art lover, this is the place to be to see paintings dating back to the 17 and 19th century. We recommend you set half a day out to visit this magnificent place.
3. Watts Towers
One of the most distinctive landmarks in Los Angeles is Watts Tower. The outside offers you incredible architecture and art from Simon Rodia that was a construction worker. The openwork towers he built with his hands and decorated them with mirrors, bottles, figurines, and ceramic tiles. While Simon lived a, seclude, life Charles Mingus lived next door to the tower and linked the work to his own and the Beatles placed the Watts Towers on the map by displaying it on a cover Lonely Hearts Club Band.
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4. Griffith Park
Griffith Park was a Christmas present from Griffith J. Griffith that was 3,000 acres of land in 1896. However, with time the park expanded with 1,000 more acres. Griffith Park is one of the largest urban parks in the USA. Here you find a chunk of Santa Monica Mountains with walking trails, wilderness, and horseback riding.
Another highlight in the park is the Los Angeles Zoo, and you can go and play a round of golf at the two golf courses available here. The Hollywood Sign borders the park and you can reach it with a tough hike. Once you reach the pinnacle, you get a view of Burbank and Hollywood.
5. Hollywood Sign
The famous sign put up in 1923 used to be Hollywoodland. Everything changed with the arrival of the Golden Age and the sign remained in Griffith Park on Mount Lee since then with only the name changing to Hollywood. On the northeast corner, you find Hollywood & Highland Center Mall. Furthermore, you find parking on Sunset Boulevard for ease of access. Therefore, if you want to get up close to the Hollywood Sign, you can hike to it from Griffith Park. Alternatively, you can park at Lake Hollywood Park to view the sign from across the canyon.
6. Griffith Observatory
Another Christmas present from Griffith J. Griffith in 1912 is the Griffith Observatory built with the funds he gave to the city. From the funds, the metropolis put up the Greek Theatre as well. You find the observatory on the south side of Mount Hollywood, which is the highest peak located in the park.
Here you can stand and view the sunset or stars twinkling at night from the terrace. The Griffith Observatory became famous in 1955 when James Dean put it on the map in the movie Rebel Without Cause. Furthermore, you can get a view of the sky through the telescopes and explore different exhibits as well.
One of the best things to do in Los Angeles is to visit the seaside resort Venice. Here you can find outlandish characters as well from cannabis shops, street vendors, and street performers to international cuisine. Two world-famous places are the Venice Muscle Beach and the skate plaza.
Furthermore, you can walk, skate, or cycle along the Strand trail. On the other hand, you can view the magnificent buildings that date back to the original development. To learn more about the historical place, we recommend you take the Venice 3-hour Electric Bike Tour.
8. California Science Center
One of the main exhibits at the California Science Center is the Space Shuttle Endeavour that took park in the 25 NASA mission. During 2019 the shuttle was still in the pavilion and available to see with an IMAX Theater pass. However, this is one exhibit of many to see. You can take the family to take part in interactivities at the museum and also you can see world-changing inventions about space and cell work here. Therefore, You will always find some exhibitions available to view.
The Lost Angeles County Museum of Art is one of the largest museums found in the Western United States. There are seven buildings located on this 20-acre site. Here you can explore a vast collection from ancient times to modern designs. Explore the Roman, Greek, American, and Latin art displayed. Furthermore, there are plans to design a new building made available by Peter Zumthor that should open its doors in 2024.
10. Warner Bros Studio
You cannot visit Los Angeles without visiting the action-packed Warner Bros Studio. Here you can learn the craft of film making to TV shows. By taking the Warner Bros Studio Tour that lasts about three hours, you can visit the Sound Stage, where they made the Big Bang Theory and see the prop house filled with costumes and more. Another major attraction is Stage 48 that offers you a self-guided tour from the sound stage, production process, to the display settings of Central Park in Friends.
11. Disneyland Resort
Take a day trip for all ages to Disneyland Resort that is the home to two theme parks. The Disney California Adventure and Disneyland Parks linked via outdoor shopping areas known as Downtown Disney. Here you can view the original theme park divided into different lands with rides stretching from Space Mountain, Big Thunder Mountain Railroad, to the Pirates of the Caribbean. Another highlight is Galaxy’s Edge and other splendors to see are the Main Street Parades.
12. Hollywood Walk of Fame
One cannot visit Los Angeles without taking the Hollywood Walk of Fame tour. Here all the commending actors, directors, musicians, and musical groups were seen on the pavement. The actor’s names displayed in brass and terrazzo and by 2019, you could see more than 2,600 stars posted on this walk of fame. Every year new leads show up on this walk so, head over here and take some selfies standing at the Hollywood Walk of Fame.
13. Universal Studios Hollywood
Take a tour of Universal Studios Hollywood and see sets and props of a wide selection of movies that made history over the years. The theme parks updated yearly, and you can see from Harry Potter to the Wizarding World on display. Take a ride through Hogwarts or enjoy the rollercoaster ride in Hippogriff. Another arrival that is new to the park is Jurassic World with its shoot the chute ride. Alternatively, take an hour tram ride through the Back to the Future, To Kill a Mockingbird, and Gremlins sets. You can even experience earthquakes and flash floods on your way!
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14. La Brea Tar Pits & Page Museum
View over 400 animals and ongoing excavation sites at La Brea Tar Pits and Page Museum. Here you can see from bison, dire wolves, to saber-toothed cats preserved in the tar at Hancock Park. All the discoveries documented at the museum and date back to 1913. The specimens are remarkable and you can get to know the process and see life-sized models of these animals.
15. Grauman’s Chinese Theatre
Once completing the Walk of Fame, head over to the Grauman’s Chinese Theater. The auditorium resembles a Chinese pagoda guarded by Ming Dynasty Lions. Here many premieres have taken place form The Kings of Kings to Star Wars. Here you can find the signatures of icons of yesteryear to present. Download a map and find your favorite stars’ names here. The cinema has 932 seats and outfitted with an IMAX screen.
16. Rodeo Drive
Visit a special place in Los Angeles known as Rodeo Drive with its palm-lined street taking you to an entirely new place. Here you find different brands from Louis Vuitton, Cartier, to Gucci. Do some window-shopping and gawp at the European-style cobblestone alley on display. Furthermore, see the Torso sculpture by Rober Graham displayed at the intersection of Dayton Way as well.
17. Pacific Park
On the west coast of the United States, you find the only amusement park the Pacific Park, that offers up to 12 rides. The famous park has been in many movies and TV shows. During the 1990s, the park was an admission-free park in L.A. When visiting the Pacific Park; you only pay for the rides and the home to the steel West Coaster and Pacific Wheel that is solar-powered. The park comprises of two structures that stretch from the Santa Monica Pier to the Pleasure Pier.
18. Mulholland Drive
One of the best places to visit in Los Angeles is the iconic Mulholland Drive comprising of a two-lane road that spans over the ridgeline of the eastern Santa Monica Mountains. Here you can experience the memories of different movies made here. Feel the history of Hollywood as you ride along this drive, viewing the luxurious homes and more. Here you can find stunning lookout points to see the city.
19. Hollywood Bowl
At the Hollywood Bowl, you can watch live music at this massive amphitheater that rests on top of the Hollywood Hills. You can view the Hollywood Sign from here as well. Some great performers from Louis Armstrong to the Beatles performed here. Furthermore, it is the summer home of the Hollywood Bowl Orchestra and Los Angeles Philharmonic orchestra. Here you can explore the free museum with exhibitions and programs available displayed from 1922.
20. Greystone Mansion and Park
View the spectacular Greystone Mansion with its 55 rooms that is one of the most expensive residences found in California. The house and gardens belong to the City of Beverly Hills and is now a public park to explore. Here many TV shows and movies came to being from Ghostbusters II, The Big Lebowski, to Spider-Man. While the mansions closed to the public, the gardens, fountains, and balustrades are open to the public from 10 am to 5 pm daily.
21. Runyon Canyon Park
If you prefer the outdoors instead of exploring buildings, you can find many hiking trails around Hollywood Hills. One of these places is Runyon Canyon Park that comprises 160 acres. The spot is famous for celebrities to enjoy a day outdoors. On the southern side, you have an entrance available on N Fuller Avenue, where you can take three trails. Here you have the problematic Hero Trail, the paved Runyon Canyon Road, and a medium hike the Star Trail. Furthermore, remember your hat as there is not much shade coverage available on these trails.
22. The Broad
Next to the Walt Disney Concert Hall, you find The Broad a cube-shaped building with stunning architecture. The structure comprises of concrete with reinforced fiberglass. The Broad consists of three levels modern to contemporary art. Furthermore, you can see sculptures and photography as well. Among some of the artwork, you will see images displayed of Andy Warhol, Jeff Koon’s, and so much more.
One of the world’s renowned research libraries is Huntington found in San Marino. Here you can find millions of items ranging from 1000s to present. Here you can see manuscripts from Abraham Lincoln, and it has a luscious botanical garden as well. Walk through the garden and see a desert garden, Chinese/Japanese garden, to lily ponds. View spectacular paintings and decorative art in the gallery as well.
24. Venice Canals
One of the best things to do in Los Angeles is to visit the miniature Venice Canal. Experience how it feels to be in Venice with its cute waterways with pedestrian-friendly residential homes. Take a peaceful waterside stroll over charming footbridges and enjoy the sun while spotting ducklings in the water. While walking, you will soon notice yourself on the set of the Nightmare on Elm Street from 1984.
25. Zuma Beach
Once visiting the Venice Canals head over for a relaxing day at Zuma Beach between Malibu and Santa Monica. Here you find a long strip of pale sand with loads of facilities available. The water can get rough at times, but it remains a prime vacation spot from January to April. You can watch the gray whales swimming on their migration to warmer parts. Alternatively, you can find restaurants, restrooms, and shop there as well.
26. Los Angeles Conservancy Walking Tour
Put your hiking shoes on and visit downtown Los Angeles with its charming streets. Join a guided tour with the Los Angeles Conservancy organizers and see fascinating locations from the Commercial District to Millennium Biltmore Hotel. Immerse yourself on Saturdays in the Golden Age of the streets filled with Art Deco and more.
27. Los Angeles City Hall
Another great thing to do in Los Angeles is to visit the City Hall that has been the image of the town since 1928. The City Halls surmounted by the Art Deco Tower and was one of the tallest buildings up to 1964. You can visit the premise free from Monday to Friday from 8 am to 5 pm.
28. Petersen Automotive Museum
Now, if you love seeing old cars head over to the Petersen Automotive Museum founded by Robert E Petersen. The shell of the building comprises of 100 tons of stainless steel that has an aerodynamic formation. There are 25 galleries with awe-inspiring vehicles and backdrops. Here you can view the 1958 Plymouth Fury, 1987 solar-powered Mana La and so much more. For a bit extra, you can visit The Vault that is the home to 250 cars spanning over 120 years.
29. Walt Disney Concert Hall
The famous hall at the Los Angeles Music Center is sure to mesmerize you. The venue pays tribute to the legendary Disney. The building comprises of a swirling stainless structure with oak cladding and offers you superlative acoustics with its giant organ. Hear the Lost Angeles Philharmonic here from October to June. You can also visit the place from Monday to Saturday with an audio-guided tour. Take part in exhibitions at the Ira Gershwin Gallery while there.
30. OUE Skyspace
Another fascinating place to visit is the OUE Skyspace that is in the U.S. Bank Tower. Here you can enjoy a hearty meal on the 71st floor and see the view of Los Angeles from above the sky. There is an observation deck with spectacular views of Hollywood Hills, Dodger Stadium, San Gabriel Mountains, and so much more. The vertigo induction comprises of clear glass to give you the best or terror view depending on your adrenalin.
31. Grand Central Market
Head over to Homer Laughlin Building and explore the Grand Central Market that is the oldest and largest public market available. Here you can enjoy the best cuisine from different vendors. You can take the L.A Downtown tour and enjoy some wood-fired pizza, ramen, oysters, tacos, burritos, and so much more. You can even find fruit, veg, and fresh herbs here as well.
32. Autry Museum of the American West
The Singing Cowboy, Gene Autry displaying the history and culture of the American West during the 1988s, founded the museum. You find the museum in Griffith Park and have a mission-style building with permanent exhibitions. There are seven galleries located on the lower and ground floor. View prehistoric hunter-gatherers to Franciscan missionaries with books, movies, and TV shows from the west. See Billy the Kid, Wyatt Earp, and Belle Starr all famous cowboys from the west.
33. The Original Farmers Market
While the Grand Central Market is a great place to visit, there is another market linked to The Grove Mall, known as The Original Farmers Market. The market trades seven days a week and offers you vibrant shopping to stock up groceries. You can buy spices, wine, olive oil, cheese, and the list goes on.
34. Sunset Boulevard
In Malibu, you find Sunset Boulevard that stretches for 22-miles. On the west side, you see the neon glare of the strip to dine and drink. However, if you want an upmarket alternative rock scene, you need to move towards Echo Park, Silver Lake, and the Arts District. Here you find the classic Chateau Marmont Hotel where many famous people have stayed.
35. Paramount Pictures Studio
Take the Paramount Picture Studio Tour at 5555 Melrose Avenue. Here you find the stages of Breakfast at Tiffany’s, Sabrina, and Rear Window. With the two-hour tour, you can discover everything in a limousine golf cart with a guide telling you about the history of Paramount Pictures. You will see the prop warehouse, and the tour takes place seven days a week. However, you do need to book your trip in advance. The best time is between 11 am and 3 pm as you may even spot someone important busy with a shoot.
36. Arts District
For art fascinators, the Art District is a magnificent place to be. The district is east of Downtown Los Angeles and is a creative hub. Here you can walk and see street art around you with more than 100 murals on display. While Graffiti is still illegal, the Art District is the place where artists can display their work on buildings.
37. Santa Monica State Beach
Another beach to visit is the Santa Monica State Beach that stretches for 3.5 miles. You will recognize the strand from different movies and TV shows. On the north side, is the Pacific Coast Highway with its famous sandstone cliffs? You can access Palisades Park and Ocean Park from here via the footbridges. The water is of high quality, and the beach is spotless. You can even find a perfect dining spot here at the Ocean Front Walk found behind the pier.
38. Pacific Coast Highway
The road is famous and offers you popular culture as it hugs the coastline for miles. On the one side, you see cliffs while the other side provides you spectacular views of the Pacific. Here you can find private residences up high on the cliffs. There are loads of beaches along the way with elegant homes and pale sand. For the best seafood, this is the place to be with amazing views. There is a fish market as well with a patio café.
39. ArcLight Hollywood
For watching, the best movies in Los Angeles visit the ArcLight Hollywood. The small cinema you can find in Boston and Chicago as well. The Cinerama Dome has come a long way since 1963 and has 15 cinema screens. Furthermore, you can enjoy the superlative sound with the best picture quality and comfortable seating.
40. The Strand
Now, if you prefer experiencing Los Angeles by bike, The Strand is the place to go. The Marvin Braude Bike Trail offers you 22 miles of cycling from Pacific Palisades to Torrance County Beach. Here you can rent an e-bike, electric scooter, to bicycle from different places around the trail. The entire route passes by the beach and diverts along Venice Fishing Pier and Washington Boulevard. You will share the road with skater and walkers that appreciate the ocean and fresh air along the way.
41. Third Street Promenade
If you want to be in the middle of the Santa Monica shopping hub, you need to head over to the Third Street Promenade. Here you have open-air car-free blocks flanked with palms, jacarandas, and both mid & upmarket stores. There are plenty of restaurants, movie theaters, and bars to unwind. You can find from Urban Outfitters, Apple Store, to banana republic here. You can find street artists around every corner.
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42. Universal City Walk
Another attraction at Universal Studios is the City Walk with its high-energy promenade that is neon-lit for dining, entertainment and shopping. The outdoor concert venue has regular live shows and you can find different street performers out at night. The entrance is free and gives you access to fast food from KFC, Subway, to Taco Bell.
43. One-Hour Flight for Two
Now, if you prefer not walking or riding around the City of Angels, you can always observe it from the sky. You can enjoy a plane trip available from GetYourGuide.com to experience the city above. Your partner and You can view the beaches, Downtown Los Angeles, skyscrapers, and Hollywood Hills. Maybe you even get the chance to take the controls and try to fly the plane above the famous city.
44. Los Angeles Natural History Museum
When visiting the Los Angeles Natural History Museum, you will find it available in three locations. You can visit the Exposition Park or Renaissance Revival building with its terracotta molding. Alternatively, you can head over to La Brea Tar Pits as well. Recently a dinosaur hall opened displaying some of the magnificent species. You can see the growth of the T Rex from the baby to a full-grown reptile. Furthermore, there is a hands-on discovery center for the kids and the Butterfly Pavilion is excellent to see as well.
45. Baldwin Hills
For a scenic outlook, visit Baldwin Hills in the California State Park. You can take up on Jefferson Boulevard’s two routes. You can take the winding dirt track or head straight to the top via Culver City Stairs. Enjoy the popcorn flowers on the way and during mid-summer, you can see the Californian aster as well. Once reaching the summit, you will see a clear view of the city.
46. Lake Hollywood Park
Above the Hollywood Reservoir on the west side of Griffith Park, you get zigzagging roads leading to Lake Hollywood Park. The drive is tricky, but once there, you enter into a quiet suburban haven with amazing sightseeing locations. There is a playground, picnic benches, regular stream of dog walkers and more.
47. Celebrity Home Tour
Are you curious about how Hollywood celebrities live? Take a tour with your map to find different celebrity homes near Hollywood. You can get a guide on GetYourGuide.com with a list of homes owned by different actors. The tour takes up to an hour to complete and you get all the juicy nit-bits as well from your tour guide.
48. Dodger Stadium
The stadium is the third oldest one available and opened its doors in 1962. To see baseball matches taking place, you can buy tickets at Lot 2 on game days. Indulge in the food from hot dogs to tacos. Get an inside look of the stadium with a 90-minute tour to view the Dodger Dugout and Lexus Dugout Club trophies and awards.
49. Taco Trucks & In-Out Burgers
For the best fast food, the city has more than hundreds of Taco Trucks available. Therefore, you can enjoy some delicious Mexican food. You can find Del Taco, Poquito Mas, and many others around the city. Alternatively, you can visit one of the In-N-Out-Burger places for the best hamburger in Los Angeles to eat. Get creative with the menu to add extra patties, cheese, and more.
50. LA Grand Tour
Another one of the best things to do in Los Angeles in the LA Grand Tour by bus. Travel and see as much of the city as you can with this tour. You can find the tour available on GetYourGuide.com and it is a 7-hour narrated tour by open-bus. You begin your trip at Sunset Boulevard and set off to Santa Monica Pier for a stop. During the journey, you will visit the Third Street Promenade, Farmers Market, Grove, Griffith Observatory, Hollywood Sign, Walk of Fame, and so much more.
As you can see, there are many things to do in Los Angeles if you are coming from afar or even live in the town. Book your trip today and see The City of Angles in all its glory displayed.