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Old 03-02-2009, 08:48 PM
 
193 posts, read 1,047,442 times
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Hi all,

I'm planning to come for a 4-day visit next w/e and wanted to get some ideas about what to do / see while I'm in town. Also, I need to book my stay.. but am not sure what neighborhoods to be looking at.. safety is definitely important and don't want a very expensive hotel. Is it possible to visit LA without renting a car? Any areas I could stay in where attractions are easily accessible? Thanks so much!
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Old 03-02-2009, 08:51 PM
 
Location: Las Flores, Orange County, CA
26,346 posts, read 80,751,010 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chicagoresident View Post
Hi all,

I'm planning to come for a 4-day visit next w/e and wanted to get some ideas about what to do / see while I'm in town. Also, I need to book my stay.. but am not sure what neighborhoods to be looking at.. safety is definitely important and don't want a very expensive hotel. Is it possible to visit LA without renting a car? Any areas I could stay in where attractions are easily accessible? Thanks so much!

A car is almost a necessity to do any amount of sightseeing in only four days.

What attractions?
What lodging budget?
Did you search the threads for answers to this often asked set of questions?
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Old 03-02-2009, 08:59 PM
 
Location: San Francisco, CA
252 posts, read 837,366 times
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If you stayed in Hollywood or downtown, it might be possible to get by without a car, but it would limit the sights you would be able to see quite a bit. Also, LAX doesn't have especially great mass transit connections, so renting a car at the airport helps in this regard as well.
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Old 03-02-2009, 09:49 PM
 
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I'm always telling people to limit their trips to easily navigable areas, but that's just me and my bent. But Hollywood is close to the Metro subway, after all, and walkable itself. Plus, buses go there reliably. So you can get downtown in mere minutes, or bus it to the beaches pretty easily. And there's stuff to do there, tourist-y area or not. Being carless does, as commented above, limit your options, but my thinking is you're never gonna see everything in 4 days anyway.

I haven't stayed at the Hollywood Orchid Suites, but I'm hearing good things in terms of cost/value/location.

One thing I'd recommend for sure, the weather being as clear as it's been lately, is to go to the Getty. I think it's the most spectacular panoramic view of the LA basin, mountains to beach. Griffith Observatory's is pretty good too.
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Old 03-02-2009, 10:56 PM
 
Location: Burbank
1,204 posts, read 3,909,331 times
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I can't imagine visiting LA without a car... Yea, places like Hollywood and Downtown are walkable, but you don't want to stay there for four days. Rent a car, and make the most out of your visit.
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Old 03-03-2009, 12:05 AM
 
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I'd go with Hollywood. It's safe, there's a range of hotel choices, and you'll probably want to see it anyway. I also agree with Bunjee - you can't see anything in 4 days anyway, so depending on what you want out of your visit you don't need a car. My personal itinerary would include time wandering around Hollywood, a full day downtown, a trip to Griffith Park, and then maybe the beach. On the other hand, it can be fun to just get a car and drive all around and just think of the drive itself as an attraction in itself. Hollywood has some car rental places; you could just rent one for a day or two when you need it and not bother with it on the other days. (it's also very easy to get to either downtown or Hollywood from LAX via public transportation: take the Flyaway bus to Union Station, then transfer to the Red metro line. It's simple, quick, and cheap.)

If you do visit or stay in Hollywood and you're there on a Sunday make sure to stop at the Hollywood Farmer's Market; it's located off of Ivar and Hollywood (just west of Hollywood and Vine) and in addition to the standard produce options it has music, tons of food stalls, and some of the cross-section of LA people-watching around.

One thing that I haven't done, but always meant (and will!) to do is to go to the Magic Castle - it's a private club for professional magicians located in Hollywood, and some of the hotels in Hollywood offer guest passes for hotel guests. (there's a Magic Castle hotel, but I remember noticing that there was at least one other smaller, cheaper place that did so as well.) The Magic Castle has shows and a restaurant and just sounds like a very cool only-in-LA kind of experience.

If you do have a car it's a quick drive from central Hollywood to Bronson Canyon, home to the much-filmed "Bat Cave." We used to always bring visitors there. It's an impressive setting even if movie history (and there's been a lot of things filmed there) isn't your thing.
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Old 03-03-2009, 12:05 AM
 
Location: Los Angeles, CA
1,636 posts, read 2,898,074 times
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Let me add to the chorus and say "get a car". There's tons of stuff to see in LA, but it's not all close together.

Like Bunjee mentioned, check out Griffith and the Getty for awesome views.

If you're here on a Sunday, you should hit up some of the various farmer's markets around. Good place to people watch and eat some good food. My favorite is the one in Hollywood.
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Old 03-03-2009, 12:30 AM
 
Location: John & Ken-ville
13,692 posts, read 15,115,240 times
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There are hotels in Culver City - which wouldn't be as expensive as Hollywood, or Downtown.

You could rent a car at the airport and drive to the hotel in Culver City which is 5 miles from the airport - distance and traffic should be taken into consideration because travelling from point A to B can be difficult if you're pressed for time.

Culver City is on the westside of L.A. and close to the beach - Santa Monica, Venice. And also near Beverly Hills, Century City where there is great shopping at the Westfield Mall, and not terribly too far from Hollywood or Downtown.

It's up to you but knowing what I know about the traffic, if you're racing from a hotel in Hollywood to get to your flight at LAX, being closer to the airport really makes a difference when making connections. And it's not as expensive to stay at an All Points Sheraton, Radisson, Extended Stay America in Culver City compared to a hotel in Hollywood or Downtown.

My 2 cents...
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Old 03-03-2009, 12:53 PM
 
10,630 posts, read 22,748,468 times
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Staying in Culver City may (or may not - there are some cheap but still decent places in Hollywood) be cheaper, and might be a better choice if your trip will revolve around the westside and the beaches, but don't let fear of getting to or from the airport keep you from downtown or Hollywood. I've made the Hollywood-LAX trip plenty of times, and never had problems. I'd personally rather factor in traveling time and proximity to things during the main part of my visit rather than during the two times you'll be at the airport.
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Old 03-03-2009, 02:23 PM
 
Location: Atlanta
625 posts, read 911,190 times
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Even though I'm gay I regret staying in WEHO the hotels are all dumps there. Stay in Beverly hills or just south of beverly hills in century city area in a nice modern hotel and you can take a cab a short distance up the boulevard to weho and hollywood and silverlake.

There seems to be an abundance of outdated hotels in LA that call themselves "boutique"... stay away from them.
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