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How to Spend One Week in LA: The Best 7 Days in Los Angeles Itinerary

Here’s a 7 days Los Angeles itinerary that’s so good, it’d make Craig David jealous (look it up, non-Brits - great song)

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People walking along the Griffith Park Trail, overlooking the city, Los Angeles, USA

As long as you’re willing to pick up a surfboard and learn about health smoothies, then I’d say seven days is more than enough for you to tell everyone you lived in Los Angeles. ‘Ah yes,’ you’ll recall, at dinner parties in decades to come, ‘I used to live in the City of Angels, splitting my time between Venice and Santa Monica.You can even point them to this very page, as your inspiration for the trip that made you a Los Angelino. You’ll collect so many unforgettable memories that each day will feel like a year of your Californian life (in a good way), whether that’s time spent patrolling the Hollywood Boulevard Walk of Fame, checking out the biceps on the Muscle Beach or throwing up over the passengers behind you on the Ferris wheel of Santa Monica’s two-thronged pier. You’ve got a week. Use it wisely. Luckily, here at Plum Guide we pride ourselves on doing the hard work, so we’ve got some pretty good tips on how to make the most of your time. Here is the perfect Los Angeles itinerary for 7 days.

Day 1: Wander along the Venice Canals

  • Enjoy a scenic stroll with a coffee

Day 2: Enjoy a day at Venice Beach

  • Soak up the revered Los Angeles sun

Day 3: Visit the Santa Monica Pier

  • Treat the kids to a day of fun

Day 4: Discover the magic of Hollywood

  • Snap a picture with the famous sign

Day 5: Marvel at the Griffith Observatory

  • Admire the impressive views

Day 6: Explore the Joshua Tree National Park

  • Take a trip out of the city

Day 7: End your trip in style at Disneyland

  • Sign off with a day to remember

Day 1: Wander along the Venice Canals

Enjoy a scenic stroll with a coffee

Venice Canals, Los Angeles

Wake up in one of the world's best vacation homes in Los Angeles (thanks, Plum Guide) and get out of bed to be greeted by those famous blue skies. Grab breakfast at the trendy Gjusta (keyboard brain fart) bakery and the Café Gratitude (who are just happy to have you). Congratulations, you’ve just been upgraded to the city’s hipster health foodie status. Walk along the Venice Canals in the afternoon and end the evening with a fine dining experience at Felix or Shima.

Mia's Lookout, Plum Guide home in Los Angeles

Day 2: Enjoy a day at Venice Beach

Soak up the revered Los Angeles sun

A white lifeguard hut on the sand at Venice Beach, Los Angeles, USA

Breakfast again – you’re getting the hang of this. Try the Sidewalk Café on Venice Boardwalk, another iconic Los Angeles breakie hotspot. Rent a surfboard and take to the waves like a cumbersome potato in Malibu. Among the best sandy strands in Los Angeles are the secluded Paradise Cove Beach, the Huntington City Beach, Venice Beach, and the Carbon Beach. The latter is known as the Billionaire’s Beach, so get ready to brush tanned shoulders with the rich and famous. Tired and salty, treat yourself to a meal at the Tar & Roses or the Water Grill Santa Monica to close day 2 of your Los Angeles itinerary for 7 days.

Bay View House, Plum Guide home in Los Angeles, USA

Day 3: Visit the Santa Monica Pier

Treat the kids to a day of fun

A ferris wheel and different stalls on Santa Monica Pier, Los Angeles, USA

Speaking of Santa Monica, take your kids out on the two-headed monster that is the Santa Monica Pier. Let ‘em run wild in the arcade games area and enjoy the views on the Ferris wheel. Now it’s your turn, shut up kids. Third Street Promenade is full of deluxe boutiques that stay open into the night; the perfect punishment for children who had too much fun at the pier. It has designer boutiques and bohemian foodie treasures. OK, the kids have had enough of the shopping. Grab a bite in the Gallery Food Hall. Throw the kids in the ocean (not really) and go try the cocktails in one of the bars that are open into the early hours.

W.M.R., Plum Guide home in Los Angeles

Day 4: Discover the magic of Hollywood

Snap a picture with the famous sign

The Hollywood sign on a hill at sunset, Los Angeles, USA

We’ve not even been to Hollywood yet. (That’s right, we. We're coming with…in spirit at least.) Get ready to try out your oohs and aahs when you spot the Hollywood sign in the distance from the taxi window. Did you know it used to be Hollywoodland (perhaps you even remember?) and now there’s fevered gossip about it changing once more to Plum Guidesland. Once you’re in Hollywood, Madame Tussauds, Ripley's Believe It or Not! and Universal Studios are among the many highlights.

Hollywood Swinging, Plum Guide home in Los Angeles, USA

Day 5: Marvel at the Griffith Observatory

Admire the impressive views

Griffith Park and Observatory, Los Angeles

Museum day. Maybe it’s raining? Come on, it’s gotta rain some time, right? There are too many to choose from, but that is our job, so we're going to say the Los Angeles County Museum of Art, the Broad, and the Griffith Observatory. Oh, and the Getty Center, yes, you’ve got to go to the Getty Center so you can take photos of the city to show off on Facebook appreciate the art, décor and gardens. Then rest your weary sightseeing legs at the upmarket restaurants of the Spago of Beverly Hills or the Dialogue.

Day 6: Explore the Joshua Tree National Park

Take a trip out of the city

A lone Joshua tree in an empty field on a sunny day, Joshua Tree National Park, USA

You’re nearly at the end of your week-long life in Los Angeles, and you’re already glamping like a goat and Zumba-ing like a zebra. So let’s take a moment to step outside and gather our Church of Scientology thoughts. Get out to the Santa Catalina Island or visit the Joshua Tree National Park, depending on whether you like that particular U2 album. Keep reminding yourself how nice it is to be out of the city.

Day 7: End your week in style at Disneyland

Sign off with a day to remember

People walking over water on a bridge into a pink castle at Disneyland, California, USA

Get back to the city right this instant. Your Plum Guide home is missing you, and we’ve not even talked about Disneyland, the Staples Center, the Grove or La Brea Tar Pits and Museum – the world’s only active urban Ice Age exhibit (quite a specific claim, but worth the visit). So, we’ll let you decide which of these exhibits is a fitting way for you to wrap up your Los Angeles itinerary for 7 days. Thanks for the memories.

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