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Los Angeles Travel Guide

Feel the L.A. experience.
Last Updated
February 17, 2024
Editorial Staff
Los Angeles skyline at sunset
Canva Photos

We know what you’re thinking – Los Angeles is just Bougie Instagram influencers, bumper-to-bumper traffic, and people who say “like” every other word. Not so fast! This ain’t your grandaddy’s LA. Sure, the city has its share of yoga pants-wearing Valley girls clutching their sugar-free matcha lattes, but scratch that surface and you’ll find a vibrant, delightfully unexpected city begging to be explored.

And antes up, people, because we’re about to school you on how to travel through La La Land without losing your mind, getting scammed, or (god forbid) inadvertently becoming an extra on the next Michael Bay film. Grab some shade under a swaying palm tree and get ready to dive into the real Los Angeles – after you finish that artisanal TikTok trending avocado toast, of course.

From the hidden local joints serving up sweet and spicy carnitas tacos to miles of golden beaches that practically shout “Baywatch slow-mo montage!”, we got ya covered faster than it takes TMZ to post paparazzi photos of Taylor Swift and Travis Kelce’s date nights. And you’re going to need all the help you can get in this lush, hot mess of a city. Navigating LA can be more frustrating than the 101 freeway at rush hour, but stick with us and we’ll help you uncover legendary music venues, world-class museums, and all the Holly-weirdness this town has to offer.

So say “hello” to LA, baby. She’s a beauty – fake eyelashes and all. Now let this be your guide as we set out to discover the endless entertainment, top-notch eats, and iconic sights that make Los Angeles like no other. Just don’t forget the sunscreen, folks.


About Los Angeles

Drone view of downtown Los Angeles or LA skyline with skyscrapers and freeway traffic below
Adobe Stock

Los Angeles is the sprawling Southern California city at the center of the nation’s film industry. The city has numerous attractions, such as the Hollywood Studios, where visitors can take behind-the-scenes tours and view celebrity handprints. The famous Walk of Fame honors thousands of stars and luminaries. You can even buy maps that lead you to their homes.

The city is a cultural hotspot, with more than 200 museums and world-class art collections. The city’s culture is diverse, reflecting the region’s wide variety of artistic styles and traditions. Moreover, there are numerous sports venues and entertainment venues. Whether you’re into sports, movies, or music, Los Angeles has something to please everyone. You’ll have a great time exploring this amazing city!

The city was once part of Mexico but was annexed by the United States during the Mexican-American War. The city is also known for the birth of the Internet. In 1969, the first ARPANET transmission was made from the University of California, Los Angeles to the Stanford Research Institute in Menlo Park. The city was a destination for filmmakers who fled from New Jersey to avoid the intellectual property claims of Thomas Edison, who had accumulated the majority of the country’s film patents. Even the name “Beverly Hills” has a rich history, starting as a Spanish lima bean ranch in the mid-1800s.


Best Time to Go

Los Angeles City Hall
Canva Photos

The summer months in Los Angeles are the busiest, and prices tend to be higher than they are the rest of the year. You will also find more tourists and fewer deals during this time. However, the shoulder season between March and April and October to November has some good benefits. This is also the best time to visit the beaches since the water will be warm, but not sweltering. It is also a great time to find good flights.

While visiting Los Angeles year-round is fun, the best time to visit can depend on your plans. For those who like theme parks, you may want to visit Universal Studios or the other major attractions in the city. World-class museums can also be fun. If you’re into culture and museums, you may want to plan a trip to LA during these months.

The spring is also a good time to visit the city. The weather is mild and breezy, and the chance of rain is low. It’s also the best time to visit Los Angeles if you want to avoid the high summer tourist crowds.


Things to Know

Downtown Los Angeles, California Cityscape
Adobe Stock

One of the first things to know when visiting Los Angeles is to prepare for traffic. The city is notorious for its gridlock. According to traffic watchdog TomTom, the city is the most congested in the U.S. Last year, drivers lost 101 hours to rush hour traffic. It is recommended that you plan your commute to be during the afternoons or early mornings when traffic is lighter.

Los Angeles is a multi-cultural city, with 224 different languages spoken by its citizens. It inspires its visitors to explore new perspectives and experience unexpected moments. This diverse city has an abundance of hidden gems, world-class museums, and championship sports teams. If you’re a first-time visitor, you can avoid traffic congestion by avoiding Burbank, Long Beach, and LAX.

If you’re looking for a day trip with your family, consider visiting the Los Angeles Museum of Art. The museum houses the works of world-renowned artists, including Andy Warhol and Jean-Michel Basquiat. The museum also includes an Infinity Mirrored Room by Yayoi Kusama. Admission is free, but you may need to purchase a timed ticket if you want to see an exhibit. Another museum that is free is the California Science Center. This museum is great for families and kids, with exhibits and interactive activities.


How to Get Around

Los Angeles, California
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Los Angeles is one of the busiest cities in the world, so it’s important to know how to get around in the city efficiently. The best way to travel short distances is by bus, which runs throughout the day and is relatively cheap. However, it is not recommended to take the bus at night, especially in areas with high crime rates. On weekdays, buses leave every 7 to 10 minutes, while on weekends, there are fewer departures.

If you want to get to downtown Los Angeles without driving, you can use the subway. Although the system is more complicated, it does provide an affordable and convenient way to travel. From LAX, you can board the Green Line shuttle to reach the Rosa Parks and 7th Street stations. From there, take the Blue Line to the Metro Center.

If you are driving, you can get a GPS navigator, which will save you a lot of time in traffic. While these devices are more convenient than paper maps, they don’t always give accurate directions. You can also use the services of Lyft or Uber to get where you want to go.


Best Hotels


1. Hotel Bel-Air

hotel bel-air los angeles

Address: 701 Stone Canyon Rd, Los Angeles, CA 90077
Phone: (310) 472-1211

The Hotel Bel-Air is a landmark in Los Angeles and one of the most exclusive and romantic hotels in the world. This luxury estate sits on 12 acres and offers guests faultless service and opulent accommodations. The newly renovated rooms and suites feature different design themes from the glamorous 1930s and 1940s. It also has a state-of-the-art fitness center. In addition to the luxurious suites, guests can enjoy the garden with the resident swans.


2. The Peninsula Beverly Hills

the peninsula beverly hills

Address: 9882 S Santa Monica Blvd, Beverly Hills, CA 90212
Phone: (310) 551-2888

The Peninsula Beverly Hills is one of the most luxurious hotels in Los Angeles. The Renaissance-styled hotel was built in 1991 and offers a variety of amenities. The hotel has a spa that boasts over 4,600 square feet of space. It also has a 60-foot (18 m) pool with 12 cabanas. It also has three restaurants and a separate bar called The Club Bar. Guests at The Peninsula are able to take advantage of the complimentary chauffeur service to get around the city.


3. The Beverly Hills Hotel

the beverly hills hotel

Address: 9641 Sunset Blvd, Beverly Hills, CA 90210
Phone: (310) 276-2251

One of the most iconic hotels in the city is the Beverly Hills Hotel, a pale pink, five-star retreat on Sunset Boulevard. This landmark has been welcoming movie stars, actors, and other famous people since 1912. The hotel boasts a world-class spa and 1,000-square-foot fitness center.


4. Oceana Santa Monica, LXR Hotels & Resorts

oceana santa monica lxr hotels resorts
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Address: 849 Ocean Ave, Santa Monica, CA 90403
Phone: (800) 777-0758

Located adjacent to Santa Monica’s famous Third Street Promenade, the Oceana Santa Monica LXR Hotels specializes in personalized service. Each suite is individually styled with its own unique layout and features. Some suites even offer views of the ocean. Rooms are equipped with plasma TVs, minibars, and free Wi-Fi. The resort also offers free yoga classes and guided hikes. In addition, guests enjoy a nightly turndown service.


5. Viceroy Santa Monica

viceroy santa monica
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Address: 1819 Ocean Ave, Santa Monica, CA 90401
Phone: (310) 260-7500

The Viceroy Santa Monica is a seaside boutique hotel with 162 guest rooms and five suites. The hotel is located directly on the beach and offers spectacular ocean views. Its restaurant and lobby bar are popular with young couples. The beach is just a few blocks away, and you can walk there from your room. The rooms have a countryside motif and Juliet balconies that tower over the neighborhood.


6. Waldorf Astoria Beverly Hills

waldorf astoria beverly hills
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Address: 9850 Wilshire Blvd, Beverly Hills, CA 90210
Phone: (310) 860-6666

The Waldorf Astoria Beverly Hills opened its doors in 2017 with an estimated budget of $200 million. Designed by the legendary Pierre-Yves Rochon, the hotel has 13 floors and 170 guest rooms and suites. Its rooms and suites include luxury amenities, including Diptyque toiletries. The hotel is home to many celebrities and is renowned for its chic pool and city views.


7. Pendry West Hollywood

pendry west hollywood

Address: 8430 Sunset Blvd, West Hollywood, CA 90069
Phone: (310) 928-9000

The Pendry West Hollywood Hotel is located right on Sunset Boulevard in the heart of LA’s hottest neighborhood. This luxurious hotel is a regular haunt of the A-list. It features several Wolfgang Puck restaurants, a members’ club and a 100-seat music venue. The Pendry is also a great option for those looking for a little peace and quiet.


8. Shutters on the Beach

shutters on the beach, los angeles
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Address: 1 Pico Blvd, Santa Monica, CA 90405
Phone: (310) 458-0030

If you’re looking for a relaxing beachside getaway, then Shutters on the Beach in Santa Monica is the place for you. This chic ocean cottage-style hotel offers luxurious rooms with soaking tubs and three gourmet restaurants. It’s also close to the Santa Monica boardwalk and 3rd Street Promenade and offers valet parking.


9. L’Ermitage Beverly Hills

l'ermitage beverly hills
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Address: 9291 Burton Way, Beverly Hills, CA 90210
Phone: (310) 278-3344

If you’re looking for a secluded luxury getaway, consider staying at L’Ermitage Beverly Hills. This 5-star hotel in Beverly Hills opened in 1975 and is known for providing exceptional service and spacious accommodations to its guests. Guests can choose from a variety of suites that feature pull-out queen sofas, full kitchens, multiple balconies, and private bathrooms. The hotel also offers complimentary Wi-Fi, taxi services, and parking.


10. Four Seasons Los Angeles at Beverly Hills

four seasons los angeles at beverly hills

Address: 300 Doheny Dr, Los Angeles, CA 90048
Phone: (310) 273-2222

The hotel is in a prime location, close to shopping on Robertson Avenue and the Sunset Strip. The Four Seasons Los Angeles at Beverly Hills has a relaxing, luxurious atmosphere that will make you feel at home. Guests can enjoy their stay in a luxury suite or enjoy the outdoor pool and cabanas.

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Best Restaurants

Restaurant view of La Vecchia Cucina
La Vecchia Cucina

When it comes to a culinary vacation, the city of Los Angeles is second to none. From the sun-drenched beaches to the blend of cultures and nationalities, the city is a foodie’s paradise. Los Angeles cuisine combines many different styles of cooking and features locally sourced ingredients.

The original El Cholo opened in 1927 and has since grown into a mini-franchise. This casual Mexican eatery is located a short drive from the beach. Another casual eatery, La Veccia Cucina, is a great option for lunch or dinner. It specializes in hearty Tuscan fare.

From high-end Michelin-starred restaurants to signature food trucks, Los Angeles has an unparalleled cuisine scene. With a wide variety of cuisines from Latin to Japanese, you’re sure to find a unique culinary experience in Los Angeles. Whether you’re looking for the finest fusion of local fare or a more upscale establishment, there’s something for everyone.

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Things to Do

Hollywood Sign in Los Angeles
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If you’re planning a trip to Los Angeles, there are many things you should do to enjoy the city. Art lovers can visit the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, one of the world’s largest museums, to see some of the finest examples of contemporary art. If you’re looking for family-friendly activities, check out the museum’s free family art workshops. The museum’s collections of postwar and contemporary art are diverse and feature more than 2,000 works of art. In addition, it also hosts regular film and music events.

If you’re not in the mood for a museum, take a drive down the famous Pacific Coast Highway. This stretch of land offers a great view of the city and a picturesque oceanfront. You can also enjoy outdoor film screenings. In October, the city holds its annual Dia de Los Muertos festival, which has been held for over 30 years. It has great food, dancing, and face painting.

Another fun activity in Los Angeles is stand-up paddleboarding. The beach is an excellent place to see the city at sunset. The city is also home to the famous Los Angeles Zoo, which hosts a zoo camp every summer. It is also a popular spot for Instagram-worthy moments.



Downtown Los Angeles
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Los Angeles enjoys a mild-to-hot Mediterranean climate with relatively low rainfall. In summer, temperatures average between 29-18°C and rarely drop below 42°F. In winter, temperatures are relatively cold, averaging 9°C. The city’s temperatures can vary a lot, but it is a good place to visit all year round.

The hot summer months are typically from May to October. High temperatures remain in the low eighties, with temperatures reaching as high as 103°F in September. However, temperatures in Los Angeles are generally comfortable, especially during the coolest months of July and August. In late May and June, a June Gloom pattern can interrupt sunny skies, although its duration varies from year to year. In late summer and early fall, the North American Monsoon can bring heavy rain, strong winds, and intense lightning.

On Wednesday, Los Angeles weather will be mostly sunny, with just a few clouds forming in the morning. It will hit 92°F by 1 pm, with a slight breeze coming from the west. The day will be a comfortable temperature for most people, though those with unusual air pollution sensitivity may feel symptoms.







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