The Hollywood Sign may be the most famous LA hike to outsiders, but if you're looking for downtown views, celebrity sightings, and a typical LA-style glamour hike (aka: not strenuous, but fashionable), the 3 mile Runyon Canyon loop is your best bet. Everyone in the industry will be there, and you better be planning on brunch afterwards. If you're just in LA for the weekend, hiking like an Angeleno is an experience unlike any other.
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Runyon Canyon Park, Los Angeles
I can't believe Runyon Canyon isn't more popular than it is. Now, don't get me wrong—people know about this place (it's a little more than busy on your average Saturday afternoon), but by and large the people here are local folks. For whatever reason, tourists don't seem to find this place—I'm guessing that's the way locals like it.
Whenever I visit L.A., I like to take a run through the park late in the afternoon. On clear days, the sweeping views of Hollywood and downtown can't be beat. Just be wary of the countless rattlesnakes and the endless parade of shockingly gorgeous people who sprint past. You've been warned.
Don't forget to get a little bokeh crazy when you get to the peak.
Whenever anyone comes to visit, I add hiking at Runyun Canyon to their itinerary. It isn't a real hike like you might find elsewhere, we call it more of a Hollywood hike. It is kinda a scene and you may even spot a celebrity here, but the view of the city and the Hollywood sign from the top is incredible.