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One day inLA

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posts: 30
One day inLA

Without having to explain my schedule, I have only one day in LA befor departing early the following morning. What do you suggest as "dont miss"?

Santa Monica...
Destination Expert
for Los Angeles, Santa Monica, Mammoth Lakes
posts: 21,796
reviews: 24
1. Re: One day inLA

Please see our FAQs page at the top of the Los Angeles forum - we have suggestions for one day itineraries.

San Francisco, CA
posts: 65
reviews: 2
2. Re: One day inLA

People come to LA to see "stars" so definitely go to Mann's Chinese theatre at hollywood and highland to take pictures with the handprints and the walk of fame as well as the Hollywood sign (from the 3rd floor). While you're there, go across the street and have an ice blended at Coffee Bean (and a burrito at Baja Fresh if you don't have one if your area). For shopping I'd hit up Robertson Blvd. which is where lots of celebrities have been seen shopping and there's also The Ivy where paparazzi are always hanging out. Rodeo Drive is also a must see and since you don't have time to go to a theme-park, I'd suggest going to Universal Citywalk - it's not far from Hollywood. As for nightlife, the sunset strip is a good place to start - The Standard is always a good bet and so is Chateau Marmont. The Rainbow Room, Viper Room and the Roxy are also great palces to hang out but they've definitely got more of a "rocker" feel to them.

La Habra, California
posts: 686
reviews: 12
3. Re: One day inLA

The prior poster has excellent suggestions. My question is this, what part of Los Angeles are you staying--downtown, the West Side, Santa Monica, Hollywood, by LAX, or another area? This makes a difference since Los Angeles is huge and a lot of attractions are spread out. I am going to assume, until I know otherwise, that you are staying near the main airport (LAX) and have a car. So if you're staying somewhere else or are depending on public transit, please let me know.

In addition to what has previously been suggested, I will recommend Santa Monica and Venice Beaches, if you like crowds, beautiful, beach scenery and people watching. I always enjoy myself when I am in that area (not necessarily doing anything, but just watching people have a good time). Also, with the hot weather we've been having, it's a great place to get out of the heat. I would also highly recommend seeing a movie in one of the Hollywood Movie Palaces if you're a fan of the "classic" Hollywood scene. Here is a website that will has information on two restored movie theaters (one in Hollywood, and one in Santa Monica)


The wonderfully restored El Capitan Theater in Hollywood might be the grandest setting for a film, but they only show Disney family movies there, so seeing a film there is probably more fun if you have kids.

The Getty Museum has great views and beautiful gardens and if you like ancient religious art such as paintings by Peter Paul Rubens and similar artists, you'll like their collection as well. You can find out more about their main museum and also their newly reopened collection in Malibu (my personal preference as I like antiquities and decorative arts) online at


There are many other things that you may enjoy doing so if what I mentioned isn't what you had in mind, please let me know your interests and I and others will try to give you more suggestions.

posts: 30
4. Re: One day inLA

thanks for your help. i am staying at lax and will have a car. will try to take in all that i can.

Rancho Santa...
posts: 6,109
reviews: 9
5. Re: One day inLA

If you're staying near LAX, I'd definitely say stay on the westside.

1) Getty Museum in Brentwood. Take the 405 or Sepulveda north, depending upon traffic. The views are excellent. The building is impressive. Except for parking, entrance is free. It gives you a great sense of place. Depending upon your interest in the collection (mine approaches zero), you can be in and out in as little as a couple of hours.

2a) I'd recommend a bit of a drive at this point on your way to Santa Monica. One option is you could take Sunset all the way to the Pacific Coast Highway. Sunset meanders through the Palisades before getting to the ocean. Once you hit PCH, head south (i.e. turn left) to Santa Monica. Try and take the California Incline to get into Santa Monica proper. The turn is on your left in the middle of the cliffs.

2b) Alternatively, you could take Sunset west to Barrington (just west of the 405) and head south (i.e. turn left) on Barrington to San Vicente Blvd. Head west on San Vicente (i.e. turn right). San Vicente is a neat street. Initially, there's a small concentration of shops. There's a great bookstore along here (sorry, can't remember the name). Eventually, as you come up along the country club, the boulevard opens up and is a nice albeit short drive to Santa Monica. Near the ocean, it merges into Ocean Blvd in Santa Monica.

3) Santa Monica is an easy place for first-time visitors. I'm sure there's plenty of detail elsewhere. Find a place to park near the Third Street Promenade (read all the parking signs very, very carefully). There's a major retail area here with plenty of restaurants, too. Palisades Park overlooks the ocean. The Pier is worth a quick visit. I like Montana, too. Nice shopping street.

4) If you've got the time and the ambition, you could also head down to Venice Beach. Just take Ocean if you want to drive. I'm a little sketchy on the details, I believe Windward is the street to park near. Walk over to the beach and stroll up and down the Venice Beach boardwalk. Alternatively, you could walk south from Santa Monica along the boardwalk. Really depends upon what you're interested in. If you drive, Abbot Kinney has some interesting shops and some excellent restaurants. Joe's is my favorite, but it has been a long time.


6. Re: One day inLA

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