A cacophony of culture, a whirlwind of sights and sounds and tastes – Los Angeles is the city of Hollywood, Venice Beach and Beverley Hills. There is so much to experience on a city break to Los Angeles that you’ll want to come back again and again.
Say Los Angeles and the first image to come to most people’s minds is the iconic Hollywood Sign. Originally an advertisement in 1923 for a real-estate development called ‘Hollywoodland’, the sign has since become a symbol for the city and for the American film industry in general. Another iconic symbol for old-school Hollywood is the Grauman's Chinese Theatre, a legendary film theatre where you’ll find the handprints of countless screen stars on the Hollywood Walk of Fame, along with crowds of actors dressed up as icons such as Marilyn Monroe and Charlie Chaplin. Head to Universal City and you’ll find Universal Studios Hollywood and the world’s largest motion picture studio. The studio was first founded by Carl Laemmle in 1915 and is now one of the biggest attractions in the whole of the US. Beside Universal Studios is the Universal City Walk, a bright and noisy shopping street with a range of themed restaurants and shops to explore.
Los Angeles is home to some of the world’s greatest museums and art galleries. The Getty Center is a must-see for culture lovers, home to a sprawling art collection that features works by everyone from Rembrandt to David Hockney. You could very easily spend a whole day discovering the treasures in this art museum, and it will take a similar time to get to grips with the Los Angeles County Museum of Art – the premier art gallery in LA. In addition to famous paintings there are countless ceramics and sculptures from places as far-flung as China and Japan. If modern art is more your thing, the Museum of Contemporary Art is home to a fantastic collection of works by all the big names in post-war art, from Mark Rothko to Dan Flavin. Kids will go mad for the dinosaurs in the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles, and music-lovers will revel in the glory of the Grammy Museum.
Over five times as big as New York’s Central Park, Griffith Park is an enormous area of natural beauty and an excellent place to enjoy the LA sun. There are 53 miles of hiking trails to explore, as well as LA Zoo, a theatre, golf courses and the landmark Griffith Observatory. This iconic vantage point on the southern slope of Mount Hollywood offers jaw-dropping views of the city and a cutting-edge planetarium. Other great parks in the city include Exposition Park and Grand Park. If you’d rather head to the beach, Venice Beach is a popular place to visit, where you can walk along the boardwalk and watch the bodybuilders flex their muscles on Muscle Beach.