If you’re looking at American destinations for your holidays in 2018, take a look at Los Angeles, or ‘La La Land’ – a place that’s dripping in glitz and glamour. Los Angeles, or the City of Angels, is one of the world’s most famous cities, attracting starry-eyed aspiring stars and tourists from across the globe. Los Angeles has a number of iconic spots including the legendary Hollywood Hills, the home of the huge Hollywood sign, Venice Beach and Disneyland. With one in six of Los Angeles’ residents having a job in the creative arts, Los Angeles deserves its reputation as a cultural and creative hub that plays a key role in the movie, fashion and music industries. While many museums and art galleries can feel stuffy, the cultural attractions in Los Angeles are vibrant, exciting and cutting-edge. With year-round sunshine and balmy temperatures, Los Angeles deserves its angelic name. Whether you’re treating your kids to some fun at Disneyland fun and the area’s main theme parks, or are heading off on a romantic couples’ retreat, Los Angeles has everything you need for an unforgettable holiday experience for all the family.
At a glance
- Currency: United States Dollar
- Language: English
- Time Zone: GMT +-8
- Average flight time: 11h 20m
When to go
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From spotting constellations at the Griffith Observatory to catching a glimpse of your favourite movie stars on Rodeo Drive, there’s no limit to your options for entertainment on your Los Angeles holiday. From museums to theme parks, there truly is something for everybody in this city. Venice Beach is mainly known for bodybuilders and skateboarders, and is a great place to get fit and active with plenty of friendly locals. Nearby, you’ll find a number of bohemian shops on Abbot Kinney where you can buy books, and enjoy a delicious, healthy meal. Hollywood’s Walk of Fame is a favourite attraction for many tourists, giving you an opportunity to spot the names of your best-loved stars among more than 2,600 stars embedded in the walkways here. The Getty Center is probably the most envied museum worldwide, with an incredible hill-top campus and plenty of space to house their numerous exhibits and attractions, including several works by Rubens and a scenic sculpture garden. If you’re looking to splash the cash, head to Rodeo Drive to browse the designer shops that you’ve seen in films like Pretty Woman.
Wine and Dine
Los Angeles has an ecletic food and drink scene that incorporates the cultures of some of the other popular cities in the USA such as New York. If you love classic American cuisine, you’ll love the food in Los Angeles, which excels at comforting and hearty American dishes at their finest. Oddly enough, one of the things that Los Angeles does best is Thai food. There’s a number of vibrant Thai restaurants here that offer spicy noodles and rich curries. Continuing in the Asian cuisine theme, Los Angeles also has plenty of delicious Ramen restaurants, whether you’re looking for vermicelli-style noodles or thicker tsukemen bowls. Other popular dishes in Los Angeles include the quintessential American dish, the burger, which has been redefined in Los Angeles with quirks including thin strips of grilled beef, Thousand Island dressing instead of traditional mustard and ketchup, and a handful of healthy greens. Other deliciously naughty delights here include doughnuts, which you can find served throughout the city, and French dip, which is served here as thin slices of roast beef served in a crusty French roll that’s dipped in meat jus.
You can treat your family to the ultimate entertainment holiday in Los Angeles, with some of the world’s best attractions within easy reach. Your kids’ beaming smiles will confirm Disneyland’s status as ‘The Happiest Place on Earth’, with a number of rides, restaurants, bars and entertainment attractions for all ages. Another Disney attraction that all the family will love is the Walt Disney Concert Hall, which is architecturally stunning on the outside with huge steel walls, and is just as exciting on the inside with frequent performances from the resident Los Angeles Philharmonic orchestra. Older children and teenagers will love a visit to the Hollywood Walk of Fame and the TCL Chinese Theatre, home to the famous mile-long walkway that showcases the handprints of more than 2,600 stars. If you’re determined to get some education and culture into your family holiday, head to the Getty Center, which manages to make art fun for all the family with its exciting exhibits.
Action and Adventure
Los Angeles is famous for its outdoor lifestyle, and focus on looking and feeling your best. In the City of Angels, there’s no shortage of active things to do to keep your heart pumping and your adrenaline levels high. One of the most popular activities in Los Angeles is hiking or trekking, which you can do along one of the numerous beaches including Santa Monica Bay, Venice Beach or Will Rogers State Beach, or on one of the hiking trails such as Runyon Canyon. Another popular choice of sport is bike riding, with a number of cycle shops you can rent a bicycle from making it easy to go exploring. Other sports on offer in Los Angeles include tennis, beach volleyball, surfing, yoga and paddle boarding. For the ultimate in thrilling adventures, there are a number of air-based activities in Los Angeles including plane rides and paragliding, giving you a bird’s eye view of the city.
Life's a Beach
The coastline around Los Angeles is magical, stretching for more than 60 miles from the beach haven of Malibu to the South Bay. The locals here love to keep in shape on one of the many beaches in the area, whether by practising yoga, playing volleyball or lifting weights on Venice Beach, or riding the waves at Leo Carrillo State Park Beach. There’s so much coastline to explore here, you can pick and choose the kind of beach to suit your needs with everything from bustling city beaches to unspoilt tranquil havens. If you’re looking for a more peaceful beach experience, head to Zuma Beach with your family or significant other for a quiet walk on the sands. Or, if you’re looking to party by the waves, you could try the Surfrider Beach and meet the chilled-out surfer crowd. There’s also a pier at Santa Monica, with a famous ferris wheel and funfair-style attractions.
Los Angeles has seemingly endless options for a great night out, whether you’re looking to impress your significant other with a romantic meal and Champagne, or are a single looking to mingle at a bustling nightclub. In downtown Los Angeles, you’ll find a wide selection of clubs including LA Live, as well as plenty of bars to get a refreshing cocktail. If you’re looking to get glammed up and head out on the town in style, try chic nightlife venues like The Colony. As one of the world’s premier entertainment capitals, Los Angeles is the proud home of some of the best clubs on the planet, including Club Nokia, the Conga Room at LA Live, and the huge Exchange LA club. You can sample the best cocktails, wines and eclectic brews at bars including Drago Centro, Ray’s and Stark Bar, and hotel bars like The Library Bar and The Spare Room.
As a premier entertainment resort and one of the most beautiful urban cities in the USA, Los Angeles has no shortage of options for a romantic couples’ holiday. You can get your holiday off to a pleasant start with a walk along El Matador Beach, one of the most romantic and scenic beaches that Los Angeles has to offer. If you’re looking to indulge in romantic dinners with fine dining and plenty of Champagne, head to the Terranea Resort and The Langham at the Royce. You can spice things up with a night out dancing at the Conga Room at LA Live, or gaze at the beautiful illuminated displays at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art. Other romantic couples’ activities include browsing the exhibits at the Griffith Observatory for a few hours and spotting your favourite constellations through a telescope. The top attraction at the Griffith Observatory is in fact the building itself, which resembles an American take on a domed palace, and enjoying the scenic views across the city.
One of the best ways to get a feel for the heritage and culture of Los Angeles is to embark on a tour of its attractions. Los Angeles has more theatres and museums than any other city in the USA, including the Walt Disney Concert Hall. World-class museums include the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, the Norton Simon Museum and the Pacific Asia Museum. To learn more about the political history of the USA, visit the Ronald Reagan Presidential Library and Museum. Los Angeles also hosts monthly art walks, introducing the latest artists to appear on the cultural landscape here. If the vibrant lifestyle has got you in the mood to dance, there’s plenty of concert halls and live music venues for you to enjoy, including the Greek Theatre, the House of Blues Sunset Strip, and free concerts like the Twilight Dance Series.