Los Angeles is one of the most dynamic and diverse cities in the world, offering an incredible range of entertainment options. You can bicycle on a sunny beach path in the morning, visit a world-class museum in the afternoon and sample the legendary club scene at night. Year-round great weather is ideal for outdoor activities, from surfing to hiking and rock climbing. In the city that invented celebrity culture, you will find famous actors appearing in small theatre productions, rooting for the Lakers and shopping at cool boutiques. We have the perfect mix of local and global, with vibrant ethnic neighborhoods to explore and a constant influx of top performing groups from around the world.
Grauman’s Chinese Theatre
Opened in 1927, Grauman’s is one of L.A.’s top landmarks. The prime attraction is the forecourt, where 10-foot-tall lotus-shaped fountains rise above the footprints of the stars.
Cinema deluxe, complete with stadium seating, a lounge, coffee bar, wall-to-wall screens and an IMAX theatre.
Restored 1926 Hollywood theatre, now the premiere venue for Disney’s animated blockbusters. Live music on the “Mighty Wurlitzer” organ before many screenings. Stage shows and special events.
American Cinematheque at the Egyptian and Aero Theatres
A year-round film festival. Classic and new film and video, with frequent guest appearances.
A paramecium looks like a blue whale on L.A.’s largest movie screen: 7 stories high, 90’ wide.
Laemmle Music Hall
The place to find the latest foreign and American independent films. (Say “Lem-lee.”)
State-of-the-art technology in the 1963 Cinerama Dome. Café bar. Plush seats. Dramatically curved screen.
Norris Cinema Theatre, USC
Regularly hosts film screenings sponsored by the USC School of Cinematic Arts.
Docs, revivals, new foreign films, plus Rocky Horror every Saturday. L.A.’s hippest audience.
Silent Movie Theatre
Keaton, Chaplin, Pickford, and Valentino live again. Live musical accompaniment.
Intimate Silver Lake dance club and bar. Artists and locals hang here. Up-and-coming DJ’s, underground bands; hip-hop to electronica to indie rock.
Café Club Fais Do-Do
A gumbo of hip-hop, soul, blues, jazz, world, funk, salsa, Latin rock and retro. Housed in an Art Deco-style former bank.
The Conga Room
Latin goes mainstream at this restaurant, lounge and bar. What the Derby is to swing, the Conga is to salsa.
Former Art Deco movie theatre with a grand ballroom, now a hot spot for live music.
A Szechuan Chinese restaurant with an intimate 60-seat live music venue. Favored hang-out of music industry honchos.
House of Blues Sunset Strip
A wide range of music, from Sinead O’Connor to Motorhead. Check out the weekly Gospel Brunch, with a Southern- style buffet.
Boogie the night away on the huge dance floor. Thumping sound system, over-the-top décor.
Once a small folkie club, now a hot live joint; all ages welcome.
Whisky A Go-Go
The Doors, the Kinks, the Ramones, Sonic Youth all played here. Consistently good music and a great vibe.
The Viper Room
Famous for its celebrity patrons. Headlining artists and cult favorites.
Museum of Jurassic Technology
A one-of-a-kind experience—an alternative reality of bizarre relics and odd facts.
Museum of Contemporary Art
Specializes in work from 1940 to the present. Three locations: MOCA, the Geffen Contemporary and the Pacific Design Center.
The Huntington Library, Art Collections and Botanical Gardens
A rare book library with a great art collection, special changing exhibitions and 150 acres of superb gardens.
L.A. County Museum of Art
Major traveling exhibitions and a permanent collection spanning the history of art. Korean and Islamic holdings; Pavilion for Japanese Art; contemporary and Old Master works. Excellent film program; Friday night jazz.
Norton Simon Museum
Two thousand years of Western and Asian art, plus a serene sculpture garden. USC alumnus Frank Gehry designed the recent interior remodel.
The Paley Center for Media
Screenings and other public programs, plus the chance to browse the collection and watch a show of your choosing.
The Getty Center and The Getty Villa
The history of Western art at the Center; ancient Greek and Roman art at the Villa, a lavish recreation of a Roman country house. Excellent music program.
Rose Bowl Flea Market
California’s most famous flea market, a trove for the persistent and keen-eyed. Some hints: Arrive early; wear good walking shoes and a sun hat; don’t make other plans. You can easily spend all Sunday perusing the sea of antiques and collectibles, vintage clothing and new merchandise from the more than 2,200 vendors. Practice your bargaining skills, but be aware that most vendors are savvy about their goods.
Jet Rag and the Salvation Army
Jet Rag, on La Brea Ave., is known as one of the best places to score a great vintage clothing deal. If your taste is hip and funky, check out Melrose Ave. for used clothing stores (and boutiques with offbeat clothes and accessories). The best shops on Melrose are located between La Brea and Fairfax Ave. Celebrity resale shops, including The AdDress Boutique on Wilshire Blvd. in Santa Monica, stocks designer duds with a past. Buffalo Exchange, on La Brea, offers the option to trade clothes you no longer want for new or recycled fashions. The cheapest used clothing finds generally come from thrift stores, including the Salvation Army.
Choosing the best shopping places in L.A. is like trying to choose the cutest puppy from a litter of Dalmatians. Some of the most popular areas include: the Third Street Promenade in Santa Monica; La Brea and Beverly Blvds.; Abbot Kinney Blvd. in Venice; downtown Beverly Hills (for window shopping, at least!); The Grove (an outdoor mall) on Fairfax; the Beverly Center on La Cienega Blvd.; and Old Town Pasadena, with its myriad shops along Colorado Boulevard.
Opened in 1934, a vibrant hangout for a cross-section of Angelinos. Dozens of owner-operated shops and stalls, plus down-home restaurants from Cajun to Korean.
Autry National Center
Permanent and changing exhibitions explore the real and fabled history of the American West—the land, the people, the arts and crafts. A highlight is the archive of Western-themed movies, radio programs and TV series. Founder Gene Autry was the Singing Cowboy of radio, movies and TV.
With over 4,107 acres of California oak trees, wild sage and manzanita, Griffith Park is one of the largest municipal parks and urban wilderness areas in the nation. Situated in the eastern Santa Monica Mountain range, the Park’s elevation ranges from 384 to 1,625 feet above sea level with terrain varying from semiarid chaparral foothills to forested valleys. You can hike the 53-mile network of trails, ride bikes (there is a rental facility), play tennis, picnic and ride on the merry-go-round. The park also has a bird sanctuary, Ferndell Nature Museum and the newly reopened Griffith Observatory, which boasts a sophisticated mini-planetarium.
Universal Studios Hollywood
The newly-enhanced studio tour at this famous theme park gives you an intimate view of a working film studio. At the backlot, you pass the sound stages where Jurassic Park, Spider-Man 2 and other blockbusters were filmed. The tour also provides a close-up look at the sets of legendary films. Special Effects Stages put you at the center of the action. If you’re lucky, you’ll catch a glimpse of movies and TV shows currently in production.