The Most Beautiful Places in Los Angeles
Somewhere you'll fit in just fine: the most scenic spots in the City of Angels.
We could simply list all of the stunning sandy beaches in LA and call it a day, but we're nothing if not thorough at Plum Guide. There's such a variety of beautiful places in Los Angeles, not to mention a lack of rainy days. And beauty is in the eye of the beholder, so we have to account for the fact that some of you will be more impressed by the aesthetics of the Getty Center than the sandy strands of Santa Monica and Malibu. So, we’ve endeavoured to create an eclectic mix to whet your appetite and guide you towards beauty in the City of Angels. And if all else fails, you could always just hang around the Hollywood Walk of Fame and hope to see stars. Disclaimer: famous actors and musicians are unlikely to visit this area. The only stars you’ll see are the ones on the sidewalk.
The Getty Center
In terms of beauty, it doesn’t get much better than this. The Getty Center is an architectural wonder in the district of Brentwood. Explore the Getty Museum within for its array of art, including original pieces by Renoir, Van Gogh and Monet among other big names. Remember that Mr. Bean scene where he sneezes on the art? Don’t do that. Aside from the art, the main draws here are the spectacular architecture and wonderful views of Los Angeles from way up high. Sit with a picnic on the grass just outside the building and take in the remarkable vistas. Back inside, check out the exhibits on French decorative arts and photography.
Hang on, we’ll get to the beaches, but put the suncream and swimming costume on hold for just one second. As we said, beauty is in the eye of the beholder, and, for many, there’s nothing better than beholding some new clothes or shiny presents. This is the exclusive street where Julia Roberts’ character dreams of being able to shop in Pretty Woman. It’ll feel for a moment as though you’ve stepped out of the US and into the cobbled lanes of Rome or Madrid. It even has a shopping mall designed by famous architect Frank Lloyd Wright. It runs for 2 miles (3.2 kilometres), so you’ll get a proper work out carrying all those bags for the full distance. At least your credit card will feel a little lighter after all the spending you’ll be doing.
Who needs Italy's Venice when you’ve got its Californian namesake right here in Los Angeles? Enjoy browsing the quirky items in the quaint boutiques of Abbot Kinney, then wander through the canals at the back of the district. Then, head to the stretch of sand for one of the liveliest and most eclectic beach experiences in the world, and certainly one of the most beautiful places in Los Angeles. Mixing with the muscle-heads (on the so-called Muscle Beach) and street artists working on the main promenade are skaters and sunbathers. The sandy beach is wide and long, making for excellent sunbathing conditions. Head to one of the exclusive restaurants at the back of the strand for lunch or dinner. You’ve got a choice between 26 Beach, Felix Trattoria and James’ Beach among myriad other restaurants.
Griffith Observatory tops many lists of the most beautiful places in Los Angeles. Arrive and appreciate the majestic building, with its long white façade and green domes. Head inside for a glimpse through its vast telescope at the night’s sky, spotting a different kind of star to that of the Hollywood Walk of Fame (which is actually nearby). Wander through the displays of the Hall of the Sky and its rhyming counterpart, the Hall of the Eye. Who doesn’t like rhymes? Put together a picnic in the adjacent Griffith Park and watch the sun go down in this picturesque part of the city. Look back on the impressive observatory, as it becomes a silhouette against the night’s sky. As it happens, you’re right by some of the main attractions in Hollywood, so could combine your visit with a trip to the Hollywood Sign, the Los Angeles Zoo and the Universal Studios Hollywood.