A Local’s Guide to Activities in Los Angeles

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Los Angeles is a the most populous city in California and the second-most populous city in the United States after New York! This bustling Southern California hot-spot is known for being the center of the nation’s film and television industry, making it an incredibly popular attraction for tourists to visit with so many things to do and see.

Planning a trip to Los Angeles with your family or friends and not sure what to do? With all of the things to explore in this massive sunny city, the options can be overwhelming – but fear not! We have compiled the ultimate local’s guide of activities to do in Los Angeles, combining the top list of must-have food, experiences, and sights the city has to offer.

  • Hiking. Los Angeles is a very active and outdoorsy city. On the weekends, you can find locals hiking various beautiful sights in the city. One of our favorite hikes to do is Runyon Canyon, a popular 3- mile round trip hike offering scenic views of Cloud’s Rest (where you might just see a few celebrities). Another scenic hike is up Griffith Observatory. This 2.5-mile west trail loop hike offers picturesque views of the Hollywood sign and the L.A. Basin as well. Although each of these hiking trails are easy to moderate, be sure to keep a few things in mind when you’re planning your adventure: wear proper shoes for hiking, bring lots of water, use sunscreen, wear sunglasses, and of course, bring your camera and have fun!
  • LA Whale Watching. Another great way to take in the outdoors and explore Los Angeles marine life is through a whale watching trip. Often overlooked by visiting tourists, whale watching trips allow for up-close-and-personal experiences with some of the largest marine mammals on earth! And LA whale watching is some of the best in the world. The best part about whale watching excursions in California is that you can experience them year-round and see all different types of whales, dolphins, sea lions, and other marine life. From November / December to April is the best time to watch the great gray whale migration, and from April to November, you can expect to see more humpback whales, killer whales, and even blue whales (the largest animal on the planet!). Book a whale watching trip today for an incredible experience the entire family will remember for many years to come. Be sure to bring sunscreen, sunglasses, non-slip shoes, and your camera to enjoy this marine journey to the fullest!
  • Venice Beach. Although there are a lot of beautiful beaches in LA, Venice Beach is a very unique tourist spot you must not miss. The Venice Boardwalk is filled with funky shops, street performers, great food stands, and lots of quirky characters that make for premiere people-watching. This buzzing beach town also features a skate park (with incredible talent) and the popular Muscle Beach outdoor gym. Walk along the Venice Boardwalk and get a sense for the community’s bohemian, free-spirited vibe!
  • Shopping. A trip to LA isn’t complete without exploring some eccentric LA shops. The shopping options are endless. Whether you prefer high-end designers of Rodeo Drive in Beverly Hills or unique thrift shops of Melrose Avenue in Hollywood, there are shops for everyone’s taste. Another overlooked benefit to checking out different stores in LA is getting a sense for the unique and vibrant culture in each part of town.
  • Museums. Another way to experience a little culture is visiting an art museum. LA is home to some amazing art museums that make for incredibly enriching experiences (not to mention, Instagram-worthy pictures as well!). One of our favorite museums to visit is the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, the largest art museum in the West featuring an inspiring collection of contemporary artworks from artists around the globe. Another great art museum is The Broad, another contemporary art museum on Grand Avenue featuring a dynamic collection of artistic representations that celebrate the art of our time.
  • Venice Beach Canals. One of our favorite ways to enjoy the California sun in LA is by exploring the Venice Beach Canals. Created over 100 years ago by Abbot Kinney, the Venice Beach canals were designed to reflect the actual canals of Venice, Italy complete with gondolas and gondoliers. They make for a beautiful place to walk and take in the gorgeous weather.
  • Restaurants. LA is home to some famous eateries and lesser known restaurants that all make for a mouth-watering restaurant experience. Of course, the one restaurant that you must not miss on is LA-based In-N-Out Burger. For some GREAT pizza, be sure to stop by Pizzana, a restaurant on San Vicente Blvd that takes a very detailed and daring approach to Neapolitan pizza. Another iconic restaurant in the heart of Venice is Rose Venice, a diverse eatery with a wide-ranging menu for breakfast, lunch and dinner. The Rose Venice features and indoor and outdoor dining with a beer garden, fresh market foods, a full bakery, Verve Coffee bar, and 40-foot cocktail bar so you and your friends can enjoy wonderful eats in a visually-stunning environment.

For more information on Long Beach whale watching tours and LA whale watching tours, contact Harbor Breeze. For decades, we have been providing some of the best whale watching experiences the West Coast has to offer with breathtaking views of the ocean’s majestic marine giants. Book your trip with us today for an unforgettable journey the entire family will love!

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