Traveller Megan McCormick spends a week in Southern California, USA, exploring one of the world’s most exciting and glamorous cities: Los Angeles
Tour Companies in Los Angeles
T: +1 323 223 2767
Contact: Richard Schave
They’re not your ordinary tour bus company. Their routes veer off into fascinating, neglected neighbourhoods. Expert guides are passionate, brainy and hilarious. Tour themes are provocative and complex, but never dry, mixing crime and social history, rock and roll and architecture, literature and film, fine art and urban studies into a simmering stew of original research and startling observations.
Even snack stops are unique: a Chinese dumpling picnic in a garden of concrete sea monsters, homemade mint lemonade and cookies at the site of the first UFO sighting in the Southland, or Black Dahlia and Nicotine flavoured gelato at Scoops in East Hollywood.
When you climb aboard for an Esotouric bus adventure, you’re guaranteed an intelligent, unpredictable ride into the secret heart of the city. Tours are recommended for natives, tourists and anyone who likes to dig a little deeper and discover the world beyond the everyday.
Las Angelitas del Pueblo: Docents of El Pueblo de Los Angeles
Visitor’s Center in the Sepulveda House
622 N. Main Street
Free historic walking one-hour tours of the area where Los Angeles was founded, every Monday through Saturday, 10 a.m., 11 a.m. and noon. Tours are available on Mondays, from January 2 through June 30 and, on Mondays, upon request and availability of docents from July 1 through December 30. Groups of 10 or more should reserve by calling El Pueblo’s Visitor Center at (213) 485-8437 or by completing the form on the website.
The free historic walking tours covers the 4th and 5th grade LAUSD curriculum requirements regarding early California history and the missions. It is an ideal way for not only school children to spend a morning, but for people of all ages in order to learn about our great city’s beginnings and to view the historic buildings of El Pueblo’s past.
Paramount Studios Tour
5555 Melrose Ave
T: +1 323 956 1777
LA Conservancy Walking Tours
523 W Sixth Street
T: +1 213 263 2489
F: +1 213 623 3909
The Los Angeles Conservancy, the largest membership-based local historic preservation organisation in the country, is dedicated to the recognition, preservation, and revitalisation of the architectural and cultural heritage of greater Los Angeles.
Established in 1978, the Conservancy grew out of the community-based effort to prevent demolition of the Los Angeles Central Library. The organization has grown to a membership of more than 8,000 households, including more than 400 volunteers. With a two-fold mission of advocacy and education, the Conservancy works to preserve existing architectural resources by developing preservation strategies and by raising public awareness of the value of those resources through tours, lectures, publications and major programmes such as Last Remaining Seats.
Join Off ‘N Running Tours, founded in 1994, for the most unusual and enjoyable tours in Los Angeles! More than a sightseeing tour, more than a workout, they take you to some of the most interesting, scenic places L.A. has to offer. Their runs and fitness walks are designed to be fun, stimulating workouts for the mind and body. Create a wonderful memory for yourself or your group – they specialise in events and tours for conventions, meetings, corporate functions, and small groups. Get out of the car and on the street, and let Off ‘N Running Tours show you the way!
“Running from the Paparazzi” invites you to experience an exciting 4-mile run from Wilshire Boulevard to glamorous Rodeo Drive in Beverly Hills, through Hollywood and past eclectic shops on Robertson Boulevard. Grace the streets of Beverly Hills in record time, doing some quick window-shopping and Celeb watching, while avoiding the forever-flashing paparazzi! This popular tour is becoming famous, so book your time and date. Don’t be left out of the headlines!
The cost for this 4-mile adventure is $60 per person, which includes an exclusively designed Running from the Paparazzi T-Shirt, bottled water, fresh fruit, and ends with a rewarding frosted cupcake! Only a celebrity would do that!
Where to Eat & Drink
Musso & Frank Grill
6667 Hollywood Blvd
T: +1 323 467 7788
The Pilot Crew said: “An absolute must. If you are in Hollywood, plan to stay for dinner and go to the legendary Musso’s. It’s the oldest restaurant in town (opened in 1919) and it’s steeped in history. Favoured nightspot of the start, you may see some at the next table to you, but it’s the food, the service and the Martinis you go for. And the interior, which has been lovingly preserved, is sumptuous. Enjoy!”
429 W 8th Street
T: +1 212 622 5950
F: +1 213 623 1530
The Pilot Crew said: “A gem of a restaurant that you really need to know about. It’s open Monday to Thursday 11am-3pm and Thursday to Saturday 6-10pm. Authentic Italian food, beautifully served with friendly and quirky staff.”
550 South Flower Street
T: +1 213 892 8080
F: +1 213 892 8686
The Pilot Crew said: “Go for brunch at the downstairs café. Chic and cool though not as cheap as when it first open. If the weather is good, take a table outside and order a pot of Sencha Green Tea and a bowl the crunchy muesli and summer fruits. The staff of aspiring actors are far too attractive to order anything unhealthy.”
The Daily Grill
612 South Flower Street
T: +1 213 622 4500
F: +1 213 629 2974
The Pilot Crew said: “A good bet for breakfast, lunch or dinner. Great food, great service and even better cocktails. Get there after 9pm for their Happy Hour Cocktail Specials and try the Marked Manhattan (Maker’s Mark & Sweet Vermouth).”
7290 Beverly Boulevard
T: +1 323 939 6455
Closed on Monday
Sunday, Tuesday – Thursday: 7:00 am – 10:00 pm
Friday – Saturday: 7:00 am – 11:00 pm
The Pilot Crew said: “Whatever you like, you’ll find something at Milk. A favourite of Beverly Hills’ rich and famous, this sandwich bar/coffee shop/ice cream parlour has something yummy for you. Actually, none of those descriptions does Milk justice. You go, and you decide! Milk also offers breakfast and a nice lunch menu, with the typical fare of sandwiches, salads, and soups. There are handmade treats including the pièce de résistance, the home-made ice cream. The space is attractive and almost industrial, while still managing to hold a little bit of the old fashioned ice cream parlour feeling. There is seating indoors and out.”
2396 Glendale Boulevard
Silver Lake, CA 90039
T: +1 323 644 1600
F: +1 323 644 1625
The Pilot Crew said: It’s easy to see why this small Vietnamese restaurant is packed out every night. Sumptuous food, great service, excellent atmosphere and unbelievably cheap prices. Even if you are planning to head up to Silver Lake, it’s worth coming here for dinner. Don’t take our word for it, the hip young things in Silver Lake are here every week.
The Los Angeles Convention & Visitors Bureau
Los Angeles Address
333 South Hope Street, 18th Floor
Los Angeles, CA 90071
T: +1 213 624 7300
F: +1 213 624 9746
Flies to Los Angeles from (worldwide destinations) – daily flights from London Heathrow to LAX, one direct.
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