Monday, 19 March 2018

Nine things to see or do in Los Angeles......

More than just the global home of the movies, Los Angeles has so much to offer the visitor, from great fine dining restaurants, world-class museums, hip and happening clubs, bars and nightlife venues to great attractions, sports hotspots and interesting attractions.  Some come with us and explore some of the fun things to do in LA.

OUE Skyspace LA
Take time to view the surroundings....OUE Skyspace LA is California’s tallest open-air observation deck and really is one of the best 'must-see' destinations for visitors to the city. Panoramic 360-degree views of Los Angeles at almost 1,000 feet above the city, you'll find this attraction at the iconic U.S. Bank Tower in Downtown L.A.

The highlight of OUE Skyspace LA is Skyslide, we're told this is the first-of-its-kind outdoor glass slide that’s attached to the exterior of the U.S. Bank Tower.  The Skyslide is about 45 feet long and about 4 feet wide and made entirely of glass. You can slide or glide between the 70th and the 69th floor of the tower and see Los Angeles in a way that few will ever experience.  There are also two observation decks and 360-degree views of Los Angeles.  This really is a great way to experience the city and is something for everyone, although the Skyslide might give the old ticker a flutter!


Historic Downtown Walking Tour
If you're here on a Saturday, then one of the absolute best experiences for visitors and locals alike is the weekly Historic Downtown Walking Tours run by Los Angles Conservancy.  It is $15 and takes around two and a half hours and gives you a slower way to explore some of LA’s most loved landmarks, including the amazing Bradbury Building, Central Library, the U.S. Bank Tower where SkySpace is located.  

Discovering downtowns unique character has never been easier, visit Pershing Square, the heart of downtown and learn more about the founding of LA, its growth, its architecture and its life.


 Everyone needs a laugh from time to time, and Los Angeles might just be the place to get one. The City of Angels has arguably the strongest comedy scene in the world because of its proximity to the big lights of production studios. Here, All The Rooms has a great guide to six of the funniest!

Universal Studios
There is no getting away from the fact that Los Angeles and Hollywood is the entertainment and movie capital of the world, so when you're in LA then it makes sense to make the most of the opportunity to get up close to the business we call show. Almost certainly the best experience is a behind-the-scenes studio tour at Universal Studios Hollywood.

Sure, this studio tour has become the most iconic of all tourist attractions, not just in LA but also the world.  It's been going since 1915 apparently, which is a pretty long time ago and is currently narrated by Jimmy Fallon - he's the late-night TV chat show host who also presented The Oscars.  It's a fabulous tour that gives you the chance to explore the working backlot of a real Hollywood movie studio and more besides.  


Warner Bros Studio Tour
The Warner Bros. Studios VIP Tour is a little more relaxed and feels a little more 'exclusive' than the Universal Tour. Travel round in groups of 12 for an intimate glimpse into the usually hidden world of Hollywood. Its a fascinating 2-hour tour going on backlot, soundstages, sets and craft shops. Sometimes you even get to walk onto or through a set of a hit television show, watch Foley artists create sound effects for movies, explore millions of props and learn how sets are constructed. You might even see Ellen!


Santa Monica Pier
There is little doubt or argument that Los Angeles is home to some of the finest beaches in Southern California, from Malibu to the South Bay! All are worth visiting and exploring if you have plenty of time, however, those with limited vacation time should really head down to the two-mile-long Santa Monica Beach. It's a cool and friendly destination and is a gentle place to hang out for a while. Santa Monica Pier opened in 1909 and is one of those 'historic' family-friendly attractions that really do seem to please everybody. Home to the Pacific Park amusement park, Heal the Bay Aquarium, and a 1922 Carousel that you might recognise from The Sting, plus a sensational Ferris Wheel, where you can enjoy a spectacular view of the coast. It's solar powered by the way - totally unique.


Dodgers Stadium
If you're a sports fan, then perhaps the perfect destination for you in LA is the world famous Dodger stadium. Since opening its gates in 1962 it has hosted eight World Series and the Dodgers have won four World Championships and is one of the most photographed tourist attractions in the city.  It is a massive place, truly cathedral-like and even if you're not a sports fan, catching a game here is a worthwhile experience as the atmosphere will lift you higher than you ever thought possible, not surprising really when you consider the capacity is around 56,000 people. That's a couple of grand more than Liverpool's Anfield, three thounsand less than Arsenal's home and about the same as Manchester City's ground.


Petersen Automotive Museum
Now before you think this is just a 'blokey' thing to do, which it unashamedly might sound, it's also got the cast of Disney/Pixar’s Cars, Herbie,  Back to the Future DeLorean time machine and a car from just before I was born in 1886.  The Petersen Automotive Museum is on Wilshire Boulevard, so its close to the greatest shopping streets in LA. It also boasts three floors of amazing exhibits, plus the secret Vaults, which you'll need special tickets to enter, a motorsports gallery and racing simulators. Oh and doing lunch at Drago, the Sicilian restaurant at Petersen is a real treat, our favourite was the risotto Fiori di Zucca, which is a wonderful dish with butternut squash, roasted hazelnut, courgette, and parmesan combo that tingles the taste buds. 


Bike Tours
If you think LA is a city for the car, you'd be both right and wrong, sure it is a car-centric city, however, it does have great public transport systems as well as some really interesting and scenic bike or cycle paths which are great way to explore the area at a more sensible pace. Try the LA River path for a gentle shortish route of about 3 miles or so, or take a ride up t the infamous Hollywood sign. There are a number of places to rent bikes in the LA region, one of the best and easiest ways is with LA Fly Ride ebikes tours and rentals.  Just Ride LA is a highly recommended supplier 


Hollywood Roosevelt
This is one of the best hotels in LA and is a great place to either stay or visit.  It opened in 1927 and features a luxurious Spanish Colonial-style which has delighted moviegoers and movie stars alike for decades. Indeed, the first-ever Academy Awards were held here and Clark Gable and Carole Lombard had their infamous affair in the penthouse suite, now named after them and has been the premier destination for stars of the big screen for decades. The hotel has some luxurious poolside cabanas to rent as well as a central courtyard where chilling out is an art form.  The Library Bar and The Spare Room are both super places for a beverage or two to relax, unwind and people watch. Expect some fruit or veggies in your drink at The Library Bar, which sounds odd until you try them and then you wonder why every bar doesn't stick a pepper in your tipple!


Just a few fun facts.......
Los Angeles is the largest city in California by population of around 4 million.
LA County population is 10.2 million approx ( I haven't counted them all)
The city of Los Angeles is 503 square miles (469 of which are land and 34 are water)
L.A. County: 4,751 square miles (4,058 square miles of land and 693 square miles of water)
Founded: Sept. 4, 1781
Pacific time zone:  -8GMT (daylight saving time -7GMT)
Average Temperatures: high 75 °F low of 56 °F.

Some other great things to do in the greater Los Angeles area can be found here.

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