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I'm going to LA for the first time at the end of August. I will be flying from Alabama to LAX and wanted suggestions on the best places to visit - I would like to go to the touristy places, but would also like to see some hidden treasures :) any ideas on how to plan a week-long trip and how best to route it would be greatly appreciated!!

Also, any suggestions on NICE, affordable hotels in the LA area would be great!

THANKS!!! :)

13 Answers

  • +1

    I trust you are renting a car to get around. Lots to see and do in LA from checking out the beach towns from Redondo Beach to Santa Monica (Manhattan Beach is a nice spot to have lunch) and the Abbot Kinney area is very cool for unique shops and good food. Downtown LAs Union Station has a great market and food stalls ( there is a French one that is fab), walk through Japantown, and of course, Hollywood/Sunset Blvd. The Griffith Observatory was restored recenly, and it glorios architecture with great views.

    If you like the outdoors, then one of the best urban hikes is Runyan Canyon right above Hollywood. Good hour loop to get a taste of fit Los angelinos jogging and walking their dogs; great views too!

    Sunset Junction is good for restaurants (cafe Stella) and bars, as is Las Feliz. I'm a big fan Hotel Figueroa fora poolside cocktail, and Chateau Marmont for brunch.
    Good hotel is Farmers Daughter in the Grove, reasonable, good and safe.
    For other places on the other days, you can look at heading East towards Palm Springs or south to San Diego ( or do a loop) . Heading North, you can explore the canyons and hotspring spas in Ojai, or take a wend through the wine country of Santa Barbara/ San Luis Obispo. Topanga Canyon north of LA is very funky, still in the 60s with a lovely restaurant with outdoor seating spread over the different levels overlooking the creek, Inn of the 7th Ray.

    If you like museums, don't miss the Getty. over 6 years ago

    Answered by tunnsey via Site_iconAsk a Nomad iPad app
  • 0

    And also search other Ls Angeles questions/answers as there is more information in there too! over 6 years ago

    Answered by tunnsey via Site_iconAsk a Nomad iPad app
  • 0

    A city tour including Beverly Hills. (You can do a dedicated seeing the stars homes if you're into that kind of thing.) You'll see downtown & they'll point out the building where one of the 'Die Hard' films was filmed. Also brought us to the Spanish market, a little oasis of market stalls somewhere in LA & nice for shopping, strolling & getting a bite to eat. LA is confusing if you don't know it, one minute you appear to be in a nice area, the next a dodgy area so it may be better to take a tour rather than self drive lest you end up in gangland turf.

    Of course Hollywood (included in city tour though I stayed there), although a bit tacky & not the best area, is worth seeing & a drive up to the Hollywood sign or an organised walk there is worth doing. They'll show you a good view of it on the city tour. Hollywood is good for getting a train direct to the 'Universal theme park'. Of course there are other theme parks such as Disneyland if you have kids, Universal is less kiddified. If you're into culture, the J. Paul Getty Musemn is supposed to be fab. La Brea Tar Pits http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/La_Brea_Tar_Pits is a kind of prehistoric lava attraction.

    On the other side of the city the coast is worth seeing (LA is something like 7 cities strung together so it's big & distances are vast). To stay, Santa Monica, with its amazing pier is better, more upmarket and far safer & nicer than Venice Beach which is a couple of kilometers down the coast. Venice beach is good for visiting particularly in the second half of the day when all the cool dudes are showing off doing their thing. At night it can be dodgy as is downtown.

    Try to avoid the public bus system in LA & walking around looking vulnerable with too much luggage, though I did take a return public but from Santa Monica to Venice beach during the day and I was fine. However the city has a dangerous undercurrent so spend money getting ferried around by people in the know such as organised tours & trusted cabs, it may be the best money you've ever spent.

    Check out these sites.http://www.latourist.com/index.php?page=attractions-links-citywide

    http://www.viator.com/Los-Angeles/d645-ttd?page=1&topx=1-1 over 6 years ago

    Answered by Hilary via Site_iconWorldNomads.com
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    If you like skiing/snowboarding or just all around snow family fun, then big bear is the place for you! over 6 years ago

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    If you visit CA and don't come to Santa Barbara (93 miles north of LA on the 101 highway), you've missed the boat! The beaches, Sunday arts & crafts show on the beach, the town itself, and the mountain views are mostly breathtaking. over 6 years ago

    Answered by via Site_iconAsk a Nomad iPad app
  • 0

    LAKE TAHOE! Plenty of activities in every season. Many of them free in the summer.
    Also, Santa Cruz is awesome.
    Napa Valley is nice if you have the money and an appetite for wine and food.
    Montery has a lot to offer also over 6 years ago

  • 0

    If you don't mind driving and don't have to come back to LA. Try this.
    Day 1 and 2 : LA. Explore LA. 2 days is not much, plan ahead. Here some suggestions, Santa-Monica and Venice beach, Huntington beach, Sun Set and Hollywood, Griffith Observatory in the evening, Redondo Drive.
    Day 3: Highway 1. Drive up the highway for spectacular view. Visit many interesting places. Explore Santa-Barbara, Camel and Monterrey. Overnight at Monterrey or San-Francisco.
    Day 3 and 4 : Explore Northern CA. Check Napa and Sonoma, Redwood forest, and of course SF area.
    Day 5 and 6. over 6 years ago

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    Day 5 and 6: Tahoe or Yosemite

    That's the way I like. To drive and see many places but of course you can just stay at one place that you really like. over 6 years ago

  • 0

    We are a group of 3 couples coming from Sydney and will travel to US mainland for the first time. We have been to Hawaii, visited the Canadian Rockies and cruised to Alaska. We wanted to explore California. Please advise the best place to start and the places to visit coz we also wanted to spend several days in Las Vegas, visit New York and Washington, DC. A couple will go proceed to Canada (Toronto, Winnipeg & Vancouver) then fly out to Hawaii before heading back home. Will greatly appreciate some advice. Thanks. over 6 years ago

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    Joshua Tree National Park is awesome! I lived in J Tree for 6 months. Also check out Stuart Cellars in Temecula for some great wine! over 6 years ago

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    Best advice don't waste your time in southern California! Change your ticket to fly into SFO! Nicer people, beautiful forest, beautiful beaches, and no smog! over 6 years ago

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    San Diego !!!! over 6 years ago

  • 0

    I love San Diego!!! I've been there last spring and had a truly wonderful time. We then went to San Francisco where we spent about two weeks of our time. It was a great experience for us! I'd say go for SD or SF if your in California. LA is a great city as well.

    I've found these article for you:
    http://travel.usnews.com/San_Diego_CA/
    http://www.mawista.com/blog/en/top-10-places-to-visit-in-the-usa/ almost 5 years ago

    Answered by Erycka via Site_iconWorldNomads.com

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