Read my latest L.A. travel guide on Trivago.
Being an East-coaster I find that there is no better time than the winter to head
straight to sunny Los Angeles. The palm trees, the ocean, the endless fun, the
delicious eats… it’s easy to call L.A. home, if even for just a few days.
WHAT TO SEE
Soaking up quality comedy is a must.
Whether it’s an improv show at Upright Citizens Brigade, which Parks and Rec
and SNL alumni Amy Poehler helped co-found, or a stand-up show on Monday
nights at The Virgil, which recently brought out Zach Galifianakis and David
Cross as special guests, it’s a guaranteed good time that rarely sets you back
more than 6 bucks. If you happen to be in town the second Sunday of the month,
checking out the Rose Bowl Flea Market is the best eye candy. You will be met
with hundreds of rare, beautiful, strange, eclectic furniture and clothing finds.
Expect to spend a few hours here rubbing elbows with locals all around looking
for a one of a kind steal.
WHAT TO DO
One of my favorite things to do in L.A. is hiking—on the west side go to Paseo
Miramar and on the east, Griffith Park—because you get to enjoy the incredible
nature while getting a workout in, all for free. If you hike Griffith, try to sneak in a
pitstop at the Observatory for sweeping views of the city and while you’re at it,
make sure to grab a bite at the adorable Trails Café.
A short road trip—about 2 hours—to the geological wonder of the Joshua
Tree National Park in the desert is also absolutely worthwhile for the nature-
junkie if you have a day to spare.
WHAT TO EAT
With so much to see and do in Los Angeles, you should have a full stomach at all
points of the day. I like to start with brunch downtown either at L.A. Chapter at
The Ace Hotel or Daily Dose Café which is located in the prettiest alleyway, or if I
happen to start my day in the west side, the weekend all you can eat brunch with
endless pancakes (including the best fried chicken combo) at A-Frame in Culver
City is the go-to. Once you’ve finally digested the epic brunch, you will want to
have dinner at another one of Roy Choi’s restaurants at The Line Hotel, either at
the gorgeous greenhouse vibe of The Commissary or the hip Korean comfort
food of POT, and end with an extra dessert stop at the Café in the hotel lobby,
which is currently serving treats like pumpkin whoopie pies and nutella buns. If
BYOB is more your style, grab some wine at Erewhon and head to the incredible
Escuela in West Hollywood for Mexican or Night and Market—either Weho or
Silverlake locations—for the best Northern Thai food in the city (my favorite dish
is the moo sadoong “startled pig” spicy salad with grilled pork, basil, lemongrass,
garlic and lime, with a side of sticky coconut rice).
No night is complete without a taco truck stop—I told you, you would be
full at all hours of the day—in the west side, hit up Tacos Leos for the best al
pastor’s and in the east, Taco Zone for amazing $2 carne molidas.
WHERE TO SLEEP
In Santa Monica, Shutters is a beautiful beachside staple that’s insanely
comfortable and relaxing. For the more action-minded, The Ace Hotel Downtown
is a no-brainer. The Ace opened early this year in the historic 1920’s United
Artists building and houses the delicious L.A. Chapter restaurant, a coffee bar,
and a fun rooftop bar.
Los Angeles is vast so the best way to get to know the city is by exploring it
neighborhood by neighborhood and you can’t deny the fact that it’s a driving city
so keep in mind the following tips:
You can’t take an Uber from LAX but you can take a free hotel shuttle to any
hotel near the airport and then Uber from there.
After 6PM Monday to Friday, you can park in any yellow loading-only zone.
Fountain Avenue is the fastest street east to west between Highland and La