Great Escapes: going la la for the bright lights of Los Angeles

Great Escapes: going la la for the bright lights of Los Angeles

There’s no business like show-business – and there’s no place in the world where that’s better represented than Los Angeles: the heart and home of Hollywood

The big picture

Los Angeles, also known as the City of Angels, is one city you need to hit up when touring the United States. The California state city offers amazing restaurants, great museums, beautiful architecture, sunny beaches ... well, the list is endless. Almost everywhere is within driving distance, so getting from Rodeo Drive, to Disneyland, to the Griffith’s Observatory, is a breeze. 2016’s much-lauded La La Land was set in Los Angeles, because it’s all about that Tinsel Town life – and it’s the perfect place for starry-eyed celeb chasers. Strut down Hollywood Boulevard, find your identical hand twin at Grauman’s Chinese Theatre (known under naming rights as TCL Chinese Theatre), pretend you’re on the red carpet at the Dolby Theatre – where the Academy Awards ceremonies are held, and snap a celeb selfie at Madame Tussauds Hollywood. When you’re done, head down to the Hollywood Walk of Fame and pick out your favourite celeb’s star among all the great names in the entertainment industry.

If you’ve ever fancied being part of a live audience on a US show, apply on the websites of shows like Jimmy Kimmel Live and The Late Late Show with James Corden (but do it months before you go, as tickets sell out early).

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A quick drive out from the Hollywood Boulevard can take you to one of three great places for dining and shopping – the Farmers’ Market, the Grove and Rodeo Drive. The Farmer’s Market is a foodie’s heaven, and is full of food stalls, eateries, food vendors and produce markets. It first opened in 193, and is a famous tourist attraction. The Grove offers a wide selection of high-end retail stores and restaurants for visitors to choose from. Rodeo Drive is a two-mile long luxury premium shopping street in Beverly Hills where tonnes of celebrities go to shop.

If you start to get a little sick of all that glitz and glamour, there are other things to do in LA. The Santa Monica Pier plays host to Pacific Park, which is a small carnival set right by the beautiful beach. Hop on a roller coaster, or take a spin on the Ferris Wheel, and stuff your face with carnival food as the sun sets over the sea. For something a little more cerebral, hike your way up to the magnificent Griffiths Observatory, where you can learn more about outer space in a beautiful building.

Speaking of theme parks ... if you’re a Disney fan then visit Disneyland Park in Anaheim, the world’s first Mickey Mouse-filled theme park. Once you’re done there, head to Universal Studios Hollywood, where you can tour the studios, pretend to be a wizard in the Wizarding World of Harry Potter, and celebrity-spot to your heart’s content.

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How to get there

There are direct flights from Hong Kong to Los Angeles – making a visit to la la land one easy flight away. Although it’s highly recommended to get around LA in a car, you can also take advantage of the metro transport system, which offers a total of six lines and 93 stations.

Today’s specialty

The best seafood on the US west coast can be found in Los Angeles. Take a stroll down the Santa Monica Pier for freshly made lobster rolls and fish tacos, and if you like fusion Japanese food, try some American style sushi rolls. Themed restaurants are also big in LA, so if you’re at Universal Studios eat at Saddle Ranch Chophouse, which is a cowboy themed bar, for their chilli, baked macaroni and potato fries. When in Disneyland, visit Café Orleans for some tasty Cajun-Creole styled food (try the garlic fries with chicken and waffles).

Top photo spot

When in Hollywood, why would you not take a photo with the most famous sign in the world? Let the whole world know you’ve been to LA! For something a little less overdone, go to the Los Angeles County Museum of Art and take photos of the 202 lamp-post sculptures that look like they’re shining just for you. Flood your Insta-feed with urban shots of downtown LA too, where funky street art and graffiti waits just for you.

Edited by Ginny Wong

This article appeared in the Young Post print edition as
La la for Los Angeles


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