City of Angels
As one of the main reasons anyone goes to Los Angeles is for the numerous theme parks in the area. Depending what you are looking for, there is a park for you. Here is a list of the ones I have been to.
I will be doing a separate post with tips and tricks for the theme parks.
Disneyland / California Adventure
Might as well start off with the big one. I only go to Disney in the down season. The park is expensive as is and if you want to spend most of your time in a line then go during the summer.
I first went to Disneyland for my 23rd birthday. I felt like a kid again when I arrived. The park is huge and every ride reminds you of your childhood.
California Adventure is across the main gates from Disneyland and it is not as packed as its sister park but can become busy at times and certain rides.
Six Flags Magic Mountain
The king of roller coasters. This park is located North of Los Angeles and has 18! coasters to choose from. Best part is this park is a ghost town during the weeks while school is in. Even with reduced hours, you can easily ride every ride with little to no line.
Knotts Berry Farm
The family park! Knotts has its share of thrills. However, it is a small park in comparison to its competition, that said the park is slow during the week and great if you want to beat the large crowds.
Universal Studios Hollywood
Universal was the first theme park I ever visited in the US. I first went when I was 19 years old and have been back several times since. If you are a movie buff this park is for you!
Be sure to get the VIP pass! Well worth it!
TV Shows to Attend
I will be doing a post for each show I have attended and what you can expect.
Most shows have a tiered ticketing system.
Guaranteed – As it states these tickets guarantee you entry – Not too many shows offer this.
Priority – Basically a guaranteed, these tickets guarantee entry as long as you arrive by a specific time.
General – These you need to show up early to get in a line. As long as you are about 35-45 minutes early you should be good.
Stand-by – Just like with airline seats these are only admitted when there is a seat to fill.
Jimmy tapes his show almost daily and is located right on the famous Hollywood Boulevard. You can get tickets easily online. You will need to sign up on the 1iota website.
Status means everything. When you sign up for tickets you and you attend you get a positive rating. If you no show the system gives you a negative rating that will affect getting tickets in the future.
One of the most popular shows to attempt to get tickets to. You must request on Ellen’s website. The dates are listed and you request a specific day. Someone from her staff will contact you and confirm your tickets. They will then mail them to you.
Price is Right
This was one on my bucket list. It is a long day but a lot of fun. Be sure to plan for 6-8 hours for the entire time you are there. An amazing experience and I would go back in a heartbeat!
Huntington Beach – Very long and open beach. Easy to find a spot even on the busy days. Located South of LA. Parking is about $10 and I have never had an issue getting a spot.
Santa Monica Pier
The famous pier! Roller coaster, Ferris wheel, arcade games and the original muscle beach.
Malibu Beach – Located North of LA, Malibu has some expensive real estate! As you drive along the coast there are tons of small parking lots that lead to State beaches. I find if you drive a few past the main beach it will be your own. As everyone sticks to the main one.
Muscle beach and the boardwalk. During the day Venice is full of little vendors selling everything from little-welded figures to spray paint art. Even if you are not buying it has some great street art to admire.
Shopping / Restaurants
Located on Hollywood Blvd just a few blocks East from the main touristy part of the Walk of Fame. This small patio style bar has some amazing food and great drinks.
I would recommend the Beef Dip or the wings. I should mention the chicken wings they have a HUGE. Not the small ones you are used to getting at other places.
Located right at the end of Sunset Blvd and Pacific Coast Highway right on the beach. Gladstones is a seafood restaurant. I would recommend the Lobster Fettuccine. Their calamari is good as well. However if you order a platter you will get a large amount of calamari so don’t bother ordering it as an appetizer if you get the platter.
Located right at Universal Studios, City Walk is an outdoor entertainment district. It has restaurants, shopping and other entertainment.
For restaurants you have the choice between, Hard Rock Cafe, Tony Roma’s, Bubba Gumps, Samba Brazilian Steakhouse plus others and some fast food options.
For Shopping it is mainly clothing stores and souvenirs.
While there you can go indoor sky diving, bowling or check out a movie. From time to time there will be performances on the stage located just outside the theater and the Hard Rock Cafe.
An outdoor mall located behind the CBS Television City studios. There is plenty of shopping and dining options to choose from. This is also where you will park if you are attending any show taping at CBS Television City.
Hotels / Car Rentals
When I travel to the US, I always go budget hotels. As I am either by myself or with a friend. We rather use that money for entertainment and fun rather then an expensive hotel.
I usually stay at a Days Inn, Best Western or Radison. Be sure to check reviews with TripAdvisor. All areas of LA are for the most part okay. However stay away from LAX and Inglewood area hotels.
I generally stick to the Buena Park. This is located South of LA. It is very close to Knotts Berry Farm and Disney.
Car Rentals – I stick with Fox Car Rental. A budget car rental company. You may need to wait sometime for a shuttle compared to the big guys (Enterprise, Budget, Hertz) . However over the course of a weeks rental you will have $100-$200!!