AdamM

Visiting the Los Angeles Area!

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I am venturing to Southern California for six days, leaving a week from now. Since I know some of you are familiar with the area, I thought you might be able to give me some suggestions on what to see during my time there. I'll have a rental car with unlimited mileage :D.

I have very broad interests, so anything from lectures to natural sights to museums is in my wheelhouse -- and, of course, anything that involves being in the sun! Thanks in advance!!

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My favourite time in LA was just before my 12pm flight, I walked to Santa Monica beach and went body surfing fairly early in the morning (7-8am?). There were surfers every 10 yards, endlessly on both sides. I think it is a local tradition - I know guys working in LA hedge funds who will get up at 4am to catch a few waves before work.

Also had the best diner of my life (and also the first; all others were so far below!...) here. Just go.

All I had was the cheese omelette (3 eggs and a jack cheese portion the size of two fists) and a sourdough slice with jam. The sourdough toast was simply awesome. This was America as I dreamed of it, the America that is sold to us foreigners with dreams.

Finally, if you want to blow some cash, go have a drink or two at the Morgan's in Hollywood. Stunning view over the whole of LA, and if the skies are clear (which is often the case in wonderful weather SoCal) you can see rows of aircrafts landing at LAX (I counted something like 20), shimmering lights floating down upon LA. Civilization.

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Also, what I REALLY wanted to do was to do the beach-length bike path. Not particularly recommended in the heat of summer but a road bike on this strip in the milder times is my idea of heaven. And you can rent them fairly cheaply along the road (there are 2 places alongside the Santa Monica pier alone).

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I am venturing to Southern California for six days, leaving a week from now. Since I know some of you are familiar with the area, I thought you might be able to give me some suggestions on what to see during my time there. I'll have a rental car with unlimited mileage :D.

I have very broad interests, so anything from lectures to natural sights to museums is in my wheelhouse -- and, of course, anything that involves being in the sun! Thanks in advance!!

Oh . . . that's exciting! At Thanksgiving, I visited the LA area for the first time and, although I had only four days, had the most wonderful time. Although I'm now a dyed-in-the-wool New Yorker, I can certainly understand why so many people have flocked there and taken to the area.

I highly recommend the Getty Villa in Malibu/Santa Monica (not to be confused with the larger Getty Museum, though this affiliated museum is reportedly magnificent and, by all accounts, definitely a worthwhile destination as well). I also second RTG's recommendation of the Beach Cities -- from Marina del Rey to Venice to Santa Monica to Malibu -- an extraordinary stretch of coastline not to be missed.

Of course, a drive/walk/shopping spree (!) through Beverly Hills and Hollywood is something I would also suggest . . . In addition to the boutiques, designer stores, cafes and wine-bars and on Rodeo Drive, Beverly Boulevard north of Wilshire, and its many side thoroughfares, will give you plenty of opportunities to take in the famous views of the big Hollywood estates and their palm-tree-lined settings.

As for restaurants . . . for a real, prototypical LA/Hollywood experience, I highly recommend Spago Beverly Hills. I thoroughly enjoyed two knock-out meals there during my stay and am already planning to return during my next visit (I can safely say that this would be a sort of "local" restaurant for me were I to live in LA). If you're in the mood for a truly extravagant evening, on the other hand, I can also recommend without reservation Melisse in Santa Monica -- I had a truly fabulous evening here with Betsy: the 10-course meal was extraordinary in virtually every respect, not least of which in terms of the special company.

Whatever you do . . . Enjoy every minute!

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If you are visiting LA, this is probably what your plane flight will look like :D

http://www.milkandcookies.com/link/239450/detail/

(found at Ace of Spades, the place where ex-Lizardoids live http://minx.cc/?post=311611 )

Yes, that part is wonderful, and then you stand in the "alien" queue for 3 hours, no, no, I'm not a terrorist, I'm here for tourism, this is my hotel, this is what I ate for.breakfast, this is my wife's bra size, here's pictures of my last two pets, can I go through now?

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I am venturing to Southern California for six days, leaving a week from now. Since I know some of you are familiar with the area, I thought you might be able to give me some suggestions on what to see during my time there. I'll have a rental car with unlimited mileage :D.

Head to NYC!

LoL!

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If you are visiting LA, this is probably what your plane flight will look like :)

http://www.milkandcookies.com/link/239450/detail/

(found at Ace of Spades, the place where ex-Lizardoids live http://minx.cc/?post=311611 )

A HD version of the video clip Carlos posted.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0ac0bXkxM3E

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Thanks Carlos and MichaelJ for the entertaining video tour of something I've probably seen over a hundred times.

Adam, it's a very hard question "what to do" or "what to see" in L.A. I'm a native and, often, the tourists see more than the natives (note the responders, so far), though I've lived all over So Cal and seen a lot. It really depends on what you want to focus on for a one-week trip. L.A. consists of a patchwork of districts, but the opposite of the concentration of New York, where Little Italy is a block away from Chinatown and you can go from upscale to downscale to Broadway to Lincoln Center in a few minutes of walking. In L.A. it's more like a 20 minute drive, or an hour in rush hour. If you're driving, get hold of the L.A. Shortcuts book. That might be fun, just to see those neighborhoods, rather than parking on the freeway. L.A. is a sprawling patchwork of self-contained neighborhoods, the San Fernando Valley ("The Valley"), Downtown (Music Center, some great restaurants, not great for walking), The Wilshire District, Hollywood, Westwood, Bevery Hills, Santa Monica, Venice, Korea Town (K-Town), ... Without knowing what you want to do, any one of those areas could keep you busy for weeks.

The great art museums are the Getty b/w L.A. & the Valley off the 405, the Norton Simon in Pasadena, The L.A. Museum of Art on Wilshire, and the Huntington Library (great collection of rare books and great 19th C art, in a beautiful botanical garden) in San Marino (near Pasadena). Will Rogers State Park is a great place to hike in the hills of Santa Monica. Beaches are easy to find -- drive West. Which ones is a whole different discussion. Theatre: The big ones are Downtown, Taper, Ahmanson, Dorothy Chandler, at the Music Center, but there are hundreds of smaller theatres, many very good. Actors gotta do something while they're not doing TV or film. Lectures, ask Betsy or Ed from O.C. ARI is down in O.C. , if you arrive in time to hear one of their lectures. USC, UCLA, all the State U's, all have lectures going on all the time.

It's a big city. There's always something going on. For food.... that's just too dependent on time and tastes, but a few are:

Pacific Dining Car on 6th St, just West of Downtown, after a show. It's a white-tablecloth, top-flight steakhouse (age their own), expensive, but open 24-hours. And after 11pm, they start serving breakfast, which is considerably more affordable, including an awe-inspiring Eggs Blackstone, if you like poached eggs on crumbled bacon, for e.g. Very quiet, elegant, (sigh).

Apple Pan in Westwood, if still there, is a single-counter diner with burgers and apple pie. And coffee. That's it. You stand behind someone who looks like they might be leaving soon and try to stare an intimidating hole in the back of their head, while they happily ignore you. K-Town has the largest Korean population in the U.S. and there are several great restaurants. Kang-Nam for Galbi Jim (beef rib stew), Park for great meat, Chosun Galbee for patio dining, Nak Won for no atmosphere, cheap, 24-hour authentic good food. Young Su San for pricey, but great Royal cuisine in the Kaesong style (for Dae Jang Geum fans. For American, it's everywhere. Main Street in Santa Monica, a few blocks off the beach, it's one nice, casual/classy restaurant after another.

As I said, L.A.'s got an awful lot of options. You could drive up or down the coast and there's tons to do just outside of town. 2 hours East, and you're up in Big Bear and Lake Arrowhead. Sunburn to frostbite in a few hours.

Have a great time!

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Wow! Thanks everybody for the advice, and I reposted the approach to LA video on facebook to make everyone jealous :D.

I plan on checking out the coastline, going to at least one of these restaurants you all have acclaimed, and I'll gladly check out the beach bikeride if the weather is nice! And especially thanks to Alann for the detailed guide -- I'll print it out!

Head to NYC!

LoL!

I don't know if that was a suggestion, but it worked -- I did in fact laugh out loud.

One last thing: I will have a fair amount of free time while I'm there this Wednesday through next Monday, so if any of you locals would like to have a cup of coffee or (dare I hope) play some tennis while I'm out there, send me a PM -- if my course takes near you, I'd love to put some faces to the names I've seen for so long here on THE FORUM!

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Catch the Queen Mary and the Spruce Goose.

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