My Top 10 Places to Visit in Los Angeles (First Time Visit)

Venice Beach Walk

I have been blogging about so many places that I have visited over the years, but have not yet written anything about the city that I have spent the last 20 years living in. Today I am doing a top 10 of places to visit in Los Angeles if you have not been here before. This is a great start to seeing what my city is all about.

Top 10 Places to Visit in Los Angeles (in no specific order):

1. Venice Beach
2. Hollywood Boulevard
3. Sunset Boulevard
4. Malibu
5. Santa Monica
6. Beverly Hills
7. The Getty Museums
8. Griffith Park
9. The Farmer’s Market & the Grove
10. A Studio Tour

Jim Morrison Mural in Venice

1. Venice Beach. Start here early in the morning and eat breakfast outside at ‘the Sidewalk Café’ which has been there for more than 35 years. The boardwalk has shops lined on one side and booths by locals selling things they have made on the other side. This is a great place to people watch; I personally love the man who is wearing a turban skating along on rollerblades playing an electric guitar and singing as he strolls along the boardwalk. Side note: It is a little dirty here and there are quite a few homeless around; I have stopped taking the kids here even for a quick trip to the awesome beachside playground early in the morning. For a one time visit I say definitely do it!

Hollywood

2. Hollywood Boulevard. Must see sights: Sid Grauman’s Chinese Theater and the Hollywood Walk of Fame. Only one part of the original theater is still here, but you get the feeling of how it used to be in Hollywood. I personally love going to the Hollywood Walk of Fame where they have hand prints and foot prints of famous people that you can take a photo with. I love to see how small or large their feet were! The streets surrounding this area are lined with stars from famous people in music, television and motion pictures. I also suggest leaving the madness and going across the street to the Roosevelt Hotel where the first Academy Awards were held. They have a free little museum on the second floor with lots of Hollywood’s history.

3. Driving Sunset Boulevard at night is spectacular. You can see at all the large billboards lit up while looking at many famous spots along the Sunset Strip (location: Sunset Boulevard between Crescent Heights and Doheny Drive). The street can be quite busy, but don’t worry, it gives you time to check everything out.

Outside of Moonshadows in Malibu

4. Malibu. Driving down Pacific Coast Highway, PCH, through Malibu is a treat. You can take in excellent views of the Pacific Ocean while exploring the area. For me the drive is my favorite part of Malibu. There is a nice pier to visit which has a little cafe at the beginning. You can enjoy some of the small beaches here or the famous Zuma Beach. There are many great restaurants too (please note slightly expensive). I personally like ‘Moonshadows’and ‘Dukes’ where you have ocean views while eating. Pepperdine University sits on a hill overlooking the Pacific Ocean and is also a nice stop while in Malibu.

5. Santa Monica. The beach town of Santa Monica has a lot to offer. The pier has been redone with a small amusement park and games similar to how the pier would have been in the 1916. In the summer there are free concerts held here which are family oriented. Nearby is 3rd Street Promenade which has shopping and restaurants. In addition to the newly redone Santa Monica Place shopping center there are two other shopping districts which include Main Street and Montana Aveune; you can shop the day away here. You can also spend some quality time at the beach.

To be continued tomorrow……

(day 52)

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