Crafted at the Port of Los Angeles is a large-scale permanent craft marketplace home to hundreds of individual craft-artists, designers, and artisanal food makers. The marketplace offers daily demonstrations, live music, special events and food trucks.
The 826LA Echo Park Time Travel Mart, a leader in convenience retailing, sells everything you need before you take a road trip through the fourth dimension.
The Grove is a world-renowned shopping, dining and entertainment destination with unparalleled stores like Anthropologie, Apple, Michael Kors, Coach and Nordstrom. Guests are enamored with the old-fashioned trolley rides and magnificent dancing fountains that have become a “must see” in Los Angeles.
Ditch the car for a day and take a Metro tour of L.A. Get a Metro Day Pass ($5) and explore gems like the Hollywood Walk of Fame, Pasadena's shops and cafes and Culver City's nightlife.
For an A-list experience at a B-list price, catch a matinee at the state-of-the-art Regal Cinemas at L.A. LIVE. Matinee prices are $11.75 on weekdays before 5:30 p.m., and weekends/holidays before 2:00 p.m. After the movie, grab a drink at nearby Rosa Mexicano or Yard House.
Reserve a spot for the free Follow That Chef series at the Gourmandise School at Santa Monica Place. Leading chefs guide participants through the Santa Monica Farmers Market before returning to the kitchen to showcase how they prepare a meal from farmers market ingredients. Don't forget to pick up some produce at the farmers market so you can recreate the chef's creations at home.
Locals know the best unofficial Hollywood Sign viewing spot is is from the top of the Home Depot parking garage on Sunset Boulevard. But if you want an experience , the most rewarding option is to go for a hike in the oak-studded hills of Griffith Park .
Thanks to an unusually cool, rainy spring, the trails are thick with vegetation. As the summer goes on, the shrubs and grasses will dry out, turning the hillsides a more golden hue.
Below, a list of the best hikes, along with some non-hiking alternatives. (Unfortunately, the easiest and most popular hiking route, the one from Beachwood Drive in Beachwood Canyon, was closed to hikers in 2017.)
Installed in 1923, the sign originally spelled out “Hollywoodland”—it was a massive advertisement for a new housing development below. It quickly became linked to the film industry, when, In 1932, an actress jumped from the “H” to her death.
After the neighborhood was built, the letters were left to rot for decades. The Hollywood Chamber of Commerce eventually saw the sign's potential, and in the 1970s, it was dug up and rebuilt—only to become LA's most recognizable symbol .
If choosing to hike, take a look at this city map of the park before setting out. It pinpoints the sign and other landmarks, identifies roads, trails, and summits, and includes parking information.
Also: Pack sunscreen and plenty of water. Some of the trails are quite steep and have little shade. It's especially important to dress and pack appropriately in the hot summer and fall months.
Beachwood Canyon is a magical, quaint neighborhood filled with gorgeous homes of a variety of styles dating back to the Golden Age of Hollywood. One of the city's first planned housing tracts, it has counted many silver-screen stars among its residents.
Tour Beachwood by way of its “secret stairs,” a network of staircases dating back to the streetcar era of Los Angeles. As the neighborhood is quite hilly, the Beachwood Canyon stairs are fairly challenging, adding a healthy component to sightseeing. There's a whole book on walking tours of LA's staircases, and the website for the book includes a PDF map and directions on how to get to and traverse the ones in Beachwood. It recommends starting at Beachwood Cafe.
Parking is scarce on the winding streets (some of which are permit-only parking), so why not take Metro's 180/181 bus lines or the Beachwood DASH bus up to the start of the walk? All of those buses pick up near the Hollywood/Vine subway stop and W Hotel on the Walk of Fame.
If you want an old-timey LA experience, it doesn't get any better than Angels Flight —a tiny railway that climbs up and down Bunker Hill in Downtown Los Angeles. The two tangerine-colored train cars, named Sinai and Olivet, are more than 100 years old. The short ride costs $1 each way, or, if you have a TAP card, just 50 cents.
Bustling Grand Central Market has seen quite a bit of change in the last few years. Trendy new vendors have come in, and the face of the market and the crowd that it caters to has altered. For better or for worse, this latest iteration of the market encapsulates an ongoing process all over Downtown, as buildings once neglected and underestimated continue to be polished up and reframed as the hot new thing. But after all these years, the market is still a wonderful place to stop for a pupusa, a bowl of vegan ramen, or burrito-sized taco.
Every Sunday, the walkable open air market known as Smorgasburg takes over a row of old warehouses between Seventh and Eighth streets off Alameda. Now known as ROW DTLA , the warehouses hold high-end design and clothing boutiques and restaurants, including Tartine . But at Smorgasburg you can score every type of food your stomach desires, from vegan ice cream sandwiches to guava cheese pastelitos to uni to smoked alligator. It's open 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., rain or shine.
Leimert Park —voted Curbed LA's 2016 neighborhood of the year —was developed in the 1920s from a design by the Olmsted brothers, and for many years was a whites-only neighborhood. Once that kind of housing discrimination became illegal , wealthy African-Americans began to move in, and, by the 1970s, Leimert became the epicenter of black arts culture in Los Angeles, eventually breeding the LA Rebellion film movement and the famous World Stage open mic nights.
Leimert Park Village is a walkable and diverse cluster of small, local businesses, many of them artsy in nature.