From the showbiz glamour of Hollywood and the upmarket shops of Rodeo Drive, to the bohemian vibes of Venice Beach, this Los Angeles itinerary will give you a great introduction to this buzzy Californian city.
Welcome to la la land! Los Angeles is one of California’s most popular travel destinations. The vast, sprawling city is home to the world’s movie industry, and a little of that Tinseltown magic can be felt all over the city.
However, there’s much more to Los Angeles than Hollywood – it’s one of the coolest and most vibrant cities in California. You’ll find gorgeous beaches, a great music scene and some of the best museums in the United States.
There’s no shortage of things to do in Los Angeles, and it’d be impossible to fit everything into one short trip. To help you plan your LA city break, and find the coolest things to do in 2 days in Los Angeles, I’ve popped together this Los Angeles itinerary – happy travelling!
When Is The Best Time to Visit Los Angeles?
Southern California is well known for its sunshine, so it’s a popular place to visit all year round. I’d recommend visiting in spring, when temperatures hover around the low 20s, the days are sunny, and the crowds scarce.
Summer brings warmer weather, but also lots of tourists, so try to avoid if you can. Autumn is usually dry, hot and can be windy. Winter brings the chance of rain, although not much – this is Southern California after all!
The Ultimate Los Angeles Itinerary
If you’re a first time visitor, start your Los Angeles itinerary in Hollywood, LA’s most iconic and stylish neighbourhood. Visit the Hollywood Walk of Fame, where the star-studded sidewalks are a glittering reminder that this is a town filled with movie magic.
Don’t miss the Chinese Theatre, Paramount Studios, the Sunset Strip, and of course, the iconic Hollywood sign – one of the most popular things to see in Los Angeles.
If you start to get a little tired, there are plenty of cafes, bars and restaurants to choose from.
Grab Lunch at Grand Central Market
LA’s iconic food hall, Grand Central Market, regularly tops the list of fun things to do in Los Angeles. After a busy morning of sightseeing in Hollywood, it’s a great place to stop and sample some of the best food in the city.
The beauty of this bustling food market is that you’ll find a little bit of everything inside. Whether you’re into tacos, BBQ, dim sum or Italian meatballs, Grand Central Market is the place for you!
Go Shopping in Beverley Hills
LA is the shopping capital of California, and Beverley Hills is home to some of the swankiest shops you’ll find in the city. Whether you like to window shop, or are prepared for a big splurge, wandering through Rodeo Drive and the boulevards of Beverley Hills is a real treat.
You won’t just find clothes stores either – this is a great place to come for local produce, books, homewares, wine and beauty products.
Ride The Ferris Wheel At Pacific Park
Pacific Park, located on the Santa Monica Pier, is one of LA’s top attractions.
This theme park has everything you need for a fun afternoon, including some adrenaline-fuelled rides and roller coasters.
The park boasts the only solar-powered ferris wheel in the world, lifting passengers 130 feet in the air and offering unbeatable views of the Los Angeles shoreline.
Visit One Of LA’s Museums
LA is home to some fabulous museums, and at least one should feature on any Los Angeles itinerary. The Los Angeles County Museum of Art is one of the best, and boasts a large collection of modernist masterpieces.
For something a little unusual, head to the Getty Center, for wonderful impressionist collections and fabulous ocean views.
Alternatively, book-lovers will marvel at the Huntingdon Library, Art Collection and Botanical Gardens – a wonderful green space with countless treasures to uncover.
Stroll Along Venice Beach Boardwalk
If the Hollywood glitz and glamour isn’t for you, head to Venice Beach for something a little more bohemian. The Venice Beach boardwalk is an ocean front promenade packed with performers, musicians, magicians, skaters, restaurants and shops.
This is the perfect place to come for an antidote to LA city life and to soak up the fabulous ocean views.
Explore Griffith Park
One of the best things about Los Angeles is the easy access from the city to some beautiful natural spots. Griffith Park, spanning more than 4,000 acres of urban wilderness, provides a great contrast to the hustle and bustle of the city.
Take a hike along one of the many walking trails, visit the Griffith Observatory (yep – that’s the place from the movie La La Land), or visit Los Angeles Zoo and Botanical Garden. Whatever you choose, a visit to Griffith Park is a real breath of fresh air on any Los Angeles itinerary.
Stay at a Luxurious Hotel in Los Angeles
If you’re visiting Los Angeles for a special occasion, how about living the true movie star life with a stay at one of the top-rated hotels in the city. Here are a few of my favourites…
A stone’s throw from the main shopping drag of Rodeo Drive, the Peninsula Beverly Hills offers decadent luxury in the heart of one of Los Angeles’ chicest neighbourhoods.
This stunning hotel, built in a French style, is gorgeous inside and out, especially at night when it’s all lit up.
There’s a fabulous spa, luxurious rooms, and wonderful fine-dining restaurant, The Belvedere. However, the real stand-out feature of this place is the service – you’ll be made to feel like a star, so enjoy it!
Santa Monica is one of Los Angeles’ finest beach towns. It’s where you’ll find locals, celebrities and Hollywood stars soaking up a little sun, sand and surf.
Shutters on the Beach is one of the best 5-star hotels in Santa Monica, and it has everything you’ll need for a luxurious beach holiday. With uninterrupted beach views, beautifully decorated interiors, and world-class facilities, this is the place to come for some seaside downtime.
If you’re looking for an eco-friendly way to indulge, why not try 1 Hotel West Hollywood, a new addition on the Sunset Strip known for its eco-friendly ethos. You won’t find any single-use plastics here and much of the striking décor is made from naturally fallen trees and other sustainable products.
However, this doesn’t mean you’ll be scrimping on luxury. Enjoy the fabulous valley views from the rooftop pool, and make the most of a whole range of wellness facilities, or indulge at one of the excellent restaurants, which serve fresh, local produce.
Tours in Los Angeles
For over a century LA has been the heartland of movie making, and you can’t visit without a taste of what it’s like to get in front of the cameras on a real life movie set.
This tour will take you behind the scenes of epic films, where you can ride the Batmobile, try out Harry Potter’s broomstick, and even re-enact your favourite scene from Friends’ in Central Perk.
To really get the best view of Los Angeles, take to the skies and view the City of Angels from the air.
This 30 minute night flight will take you over the city to see the illuminations from above. You’ll cruise over the downtown skyline as it glows, spotting familiar landmarks such as the iconic Hollywood sign, Griffith Observatory, Hollywood Sign, Sunset Boulevard and more.
Looking for other cool places to visit in California? Don’t forget to check out my San Francisco itinerary, which is packed full of amazing food recommendations, fun day trips and great views.
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