Located in beautiful Griffith Park and given to the City of Los Angeles as a gift in 1896, the Greek Theater is an outdoor concert venue you must experience while staying in L.A. Though it can seat more than 6,000 patrons, you may never again enjoy such a truly intimate setting for listening to one of your favorite performers. Surrounded by trees, the space offers outstanding acoustics. Whether you prefer classical music, rock, easy listening or jazz, you'll love this place. Ticket prices vary widely and can often be somewhat expensive. Depending on the time of year, you'll probably want to bring along a sweater or jacket, since you'll be seated outdoors in a city that can get a bit chilly in the evenings. On show nights the box office remains open for 30 minutes before the show.
After the Palace Theatre was converted for silent films, the Orpheum vaudeville circuit moved here for its remaining years. Like the Los Angeles Theatre, it emulates the opulence of a French palace, with a marble lobby, a gold gilt ceiling, and a rare organ. One of the landmarks in the region, the theatre continues to host multiple events, shows and concerts. Tickets can be booked online or at the box office, one hour prior to the show.
The Getty Center is a museum you can't miss. With lofty skylights and original architecture, it is one of the best museums in Los Angeles. The center stores a multitude of art, sculpture, and photographs from Europe and America. You can also check out old manuscripts and decorative arts here. Highlights of past years consist of Italian manuscripts from the Middle Ages and Renaissance and Rembrandt's Late Religious Portraits. Set aside a day for this museum, its Central Gardens and popular restaurant, which are sure to leave you breathless with their beauty.
Since its inception in 1961, the Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA) has been devoted to collecting works of art that span both history and geography. Today, the museum features particularly strong collections of Asian, Latin American, European, and American art, as well as a contemporary museum on its campus, Broad Contemporary Art Museum (BCAM). With this expanded space for contemporary art, innovative collaborations with artists, and an ongoing transformation project, LACMA is creating a truly modern lens through which to view its rich encyclopedic collection of more than 100,000 works. With this much to explore, they encourage you to spend an entire day with them.
Spread over 4,210 acres (1704 hectares) of the eastern end of the Santa Monica Mountains, Griffith Park is often referred to as "the Central Park of Los Angeles," although its verdant sprawl surpasses its east-coast counterpart in both size and wild charm. The municipal park is one of North America's largest urban green spaces, splayed across an undulating landscape sheathed in oak and walnut woodlands, coastal sage scrub, landscaped parklands, and deep, luxuriant gorges. There's ample opportunity for outdoor activities like hiking, horseback riding and tennis, alongside popular attractions like the Griffith Observatory, the Los Angeles Zoo, the Greek Theater, and the iconic Hollywood Sign. At the confluence of landscaped greenery and rugged wilderness, Griffith Park is Los Angeles' most treasured recreational venues and scenic escapes.
160 acres (65 hectares) of unspoiled nature can be seen at the east point of the Santa Monica mountains at the Runyon Canyon Park. This pet friendly park has two southern entrances and a northern entrance at Mulholland Drive. Go for a hike or head to the play area where your kids can play. Keep your camera ready as celebrities are known to unwind here as well.
Tucked away in the Little Tokyo area of downtown Los Angeles, this ultra modern movie theater is known for showing indie films and hosting special events. The Downtown Independent, aside from being a movie theater, is an architecturally stunning venue with steel and glass sleek-shaped cube design that opened after a huge renovation in 2007. This space features just one theater with 250 comfortable seats. Beer is sold at the concession stand, making it far from a usual movie theater.
The Bradbury Building is the one of the most impressive Victorian buildings that remains in L.A. Determined to build a lasting monument as his final real estate development, millionaire Lewis Bradbury rejected conventional designs and urged draftsman George Wyman to give the building a more futuristic twist. Wyman initially turned down the offer as unprofessional, but was supposedly persuaded to change his mind after communicating with his deceased brother using a Ouija board. He ultimately created a masterpiece of oak paneling, tiled stairs, wrought-iron railings, open-cage elevators and a glass roof, which illuminates all.
This museum run by the Museum of Contemporary Art (MOCA) is an important landmark in Little Tokyo. It is one of the three MOCA museums in the city. The spacious establishment has a gallery where exhibitions of renowned artists are hosted and a reading room stocking books. Opened in 1963, it offers more than 40, 000 square feet of exhibition space.
This attractive museum is both a study of the life of Japanese-Americans and a celebration of Japanese-American art. The museum has presented a number of art exhibitions tackling several different mediums, including photography, film and sculpture. The subjects of some past exhibitions have included "Asian American Artists and Abstraction, 1945-1970", and "The Kona Coffee Story: Along the Hawaii Belt Road."
The Chinese American Museum is the first in Southern California to document the experience of the Chinese in America. It is housed within the oldest surviving Chinese building, called the Garnier Building. The first exhibition was held in 1992 and featured the works of James Wong Howe, the Oscar-winning cinematographer. The museum's main aim is to eventually become an educational resource for other ethnic communities. In February, it celebrates the Chinese Lantern Festival, so if you're visiting LA at that time make sure it's on your itinerary.
Focusing on the Mexican American experience in Southern California and the greater Los Angeles area, this cultural center celebrates the influence of the culture and its people. La Plaza de Cultura y Artes is located near the site where Los Angeles was founded in 1781 on a sprawling 2.2 acre campus. The center is home to two historic buildings, and a lush public garden. Take a peek at rotating exhibits, partake in an educational program or attend one of their many on-going events.