What Can I Do in Los Angeles During a 48-Hour Stopover?
The sprawling metropolitan area of LA is California's biggest city and the second biggest in the US. Famous for its glitzy neighbourhoods, laid back beach vibes and for being the epicentre of global film production, there’s plenty to stay occupied in LA. This means that anyone wondering what can I do in LA in 48 hours will find they can fill their time very easily. In fact, 48 hours means choosing your sightseeing and activities carefully to get the best from this truly unique city. With just two days there’s probably no time to visit the major theme parks such as Disneyland or Universal Studios. Instead dedicate your time to the best of the rest, from upscale shopping to museums, beach life and star-spotting in Hollywood.
Where should I go in Los Angeles?
1. Glitzy Hollywood
As the world’s centre for film making, Hollywood is an essential place to visit in LA. As kitsch as it is glitzy, Hollywood offers an out-of-this-world Las Vegas-style experience. Film buffs should relish a studio tour, but with just two days in the city, you’ll need to choose one carefully. Universal Studios is the biggest and incorporates a theme park but is arguably just too big for a weekend visit. Instead opt for either the Warner Bros Studio, Sony Pictures Studio or Paramount Studios. Each offers a fascinating insight into the real world of film production. Whilst in the Hollywood area be sure to take the Walk of Fame along Hollywood Boulevard and if you have time, catch a movie screening at one of the region's famous cinemas, the El Capitan Theatre, Egyptian Theatre, Kodak Theatre or Grauman’s Chinese Theatre.
2. Rodeo Drive Baby!
Famously featured in the film Pretty Woman, Rodeo Drive is the most exclusive shopping road in one of LA’s most elite districts, Beverly Hills. Either leave your wallet at the hotel or promise yourself it’s just window shopping as you encounter the flagship stores of the world’s best-known designers including Cartier, Hermes, Versace and Louis Vuitton. Finish off with a drink in the bar of the Beverly Wilshire, one of the most exclusive hotels in the world.
3. Downtown LA
The Downtown area, effectively central LA, is where the city’s best restaurants, bars and art galleries are found. The main highlights are navigable on foot, and it’s worth setting aside a half day to explore this area. Top attractions include the Walt Disney Concert Hall, the Civic Centre and the Grand Central Market, the perfect place to sample LA’s burgeoning foodie scene. Downtown incorporates several smaller districts that are well worth a wander, including Little Tokyo, Chinatown and El Pueblo, the historic centre of LA.
4. Mid-City and West Hollywood
Located to the west of the Downtown area is the Mid-City district, home to LA’s best museums. This includes the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, the Peterson Automotive Museum, the Holocaust Museum and La Brea Tar Pits Museum. Just north of Mid-City is West Hollywood, the perfect location for your evening’s entertainment and also one of the most LGBT-friendly places in the world. Take a bar crawl along the famed Sunset Strip or Santa Monica Boulevard and watch out for the celebs.
5. Chill out in Venice Beach
The majority of visitors flock to Santa Monica beach, and for good reason, with its fun pier and ample facilities, but neighbouring Venice Beach, is the more unique, offbeat choice. The beating heart of bohemian LA, Venice is the ancestral home of the hippie, the skateboarder and the dreamer. Venice boardwalk is the obvious highlight, an iconic LA landmark where a never-ending display of street performers captivate visitors. Located close to LAX, if you're wondering what can I do in Los Angeles if I have a stopover? Then Venice Beach is your answer.
6. Griffith Observatory and Park
A walk through Griffith Park provides both jaw-dropping views across the city but also a fantastic sight of the world-famous Hollywood sign. Griffith is a vast municipal park, the biggest in the US in fact. Its hilly, sandy terrain is home to native flora such as Californian Oak and Manzanita. The park is filled with a choice of trails for walking and cycling as well as activities such as horse-riding. Families can also enjoy the Los Angeles Zoo and the Museum of the American West, which are both located within the confines of the park. At the peak is the domed Griffith Observatory, which boasts a planetarium, public telescopes and sweeping views of this sprawling, enigmatic city. Book your flight to LA for less by finding the most competitive tickets at Vayama.ie.
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