LA: Who The Hell Is She?
Collected by Kristin Rust , AFAR Local Expert
I recently moved to this rather iconic destination and am trying to get my arms around it. I feel it's a very misunderstood city, with multiple personalities, and often in need of a Xanax. That said, it's worth getting to know. There's always something to do and see and an adventure waiting in every corner. My strategy is to pick a site or neighborhood, get there before 10am on a weekend, and go from there.
Arts District, Los Angeles, CA, USA
If you head just a bit farther east out of downtown LA, you will stumble upon an outdoor street art museum all over walls, garage doors, light poles, and pretty much any surface that will hold paint. Old industrial warehouses near the LA River and...
The Evergreen Cemetery in East LA is the oldest and one of the most grand in the city. Some of the city's most notable names are buried here, including pioneers and politicians. And while segregated, the grounds do represent the melting pot that...
6661 Imperial Hwy, Los Angeles, CA 90045, USA
If you're picking someone up at LAX, go a bit early and head to the Flight Path Museum along the south runways of LAX on the Imperial Highway. This hidden spot is a treasure for aviation enthusiasts with exhibits that include fascinating photos of...
Los Angeles, CA 90012, USA
Who knew? But yes, there is an actual subway system in Los Angeles! It doesn't go out to the beach cities, but it's pretty slick and clean and full of public art. You may not get as far as you'd like, but consider it a trip to a free museum (well,...
Olvera St, Los Angeles, CA 90012, USA
Every Saturday before Easter Sunday for the last 100+ years, people from all over Los Angeles bring their pets to be blessed by the local priest in a procession of thousands of animals near Calle Olvera, one of the city's oldest and most historic...
4135 Sepulveda Blvd, Culver City, CA 90230, USA
Next to a strip mall orthodox church and a Radio Shack, this decidedly un-glam Burmese restaurant serves some of the most memorable Burmese dishes I've had outside of Myanmar. The delectable halal fare isn't just for Muslims—though you'll see it...
Los Angeles, CA 90068, USA
Venice Fishing Pier, Venice, CA 90292, USA
The Pacific Ocean is a force that calls to some to jump in and join the dolphins that frequent its waters. Temperatures are warmest in August and September, but wet suits are available to rent year-round. Go surfing or take a stand-up...
10801 W Pico Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90064, USA
"Forever" is a long time, especially in the restaurant business, but I wish immortality for The Apple Pan (founded 1947), which was my go-to hamburger spot as I worked my way through college at UCLA (with a job at Super Drug just up Westwood Blvd....
1614 Santa Monica Blvd, Santa Monica, CA 90404, USA
Apparently I had been living under a rock, because I had not heard of the Cronut - the latest baked sensation to sweep Manhattan. It's a doughy delight croissant/donut half-breed, and it's finally come to LA! I found them at the unassuming DK...
1116 Palms Blvd, Venice, CA 90291, USA
If you find some extra time when in Venice, go east of Lincoln on Palm Blvd, and check out the Mosaic Tile House - you cannot miss it. An adorable artistic couple started a tiny project that turned into their lives work, and entire stucco home,...
1001 North Alameda, Los Angeles, CA 90012, USA
Philippe's has been in Los Angeles for over 100 years, and, according to legend, invented the French Dip sandwich purely by accident, when a French roll fell into a roasting pan full of beef juice. There are no accidents—a classic was born! This...
715 S Broadway, Los Angeles, CA 90014, USA
Travel by foot down Broadway in downtown LA and find store after store filled with the most colorful, puffy, tiered party dresses you have ever seen. Walls are lined with these flashy gowns in shocking orange, stunning magenta, bright turquoise,...
370 Santa Monica Pier, Santa Monica, CA 90401, USA
Quietly stationed between the Ferris Wheel, Playland Arcade and Pacific Park on the Santa Monica Pier, lives the TSNY School of Trapeze, and an unintimidating way to fly through the air. Yes, you get a crowd of tourists watching from the pier...
8818 Sunset Blvd, West Hollywood, CA 90069, USA
It’s easy to miss the discreet sign for “Book Soup” after passing the more obvious marquees for Sunset Strip’s famous nightlife and entertainment destinations. This cozy, out-of-place bookshop feels endless as it lures you in and slows down time...
512 Rose Ave, Venice, CA 90291, USA
"I am grateful" is just one of the ways you order lunch at Cafe Gratitude. "I am whole" is another; as is "I am glorious." Every dish on the menu has a name like this, and whether you're in the mood for gratitude (the community bowl with shredded...
5333 Zoo Dr, Los Angeles, CA 90027, USA
The original Los Angeles Zoo opened in 1912, and during its infancy, grew to include a number of animal enclosures designed to mimic natural habitats. Decades later, however, it became apparent that environments once thought to be safe and humane...
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