First Time in L.A. - My Current Top 3
This time, last year, I escaped Nor’easter and made my way to the west coast for the first time. My husband and I took a couple’s trip to L.A. Out of all of our getaways, L.A. is a destination I definitely want to revisit again, and again, and again.
L.A. was a much needed trip. Beginning of March last year was some kind of hell for me. I was finishing up finals, finally closed on my home – a taxing 3-month process, and then we had to move, on top of you know, raising a toddler, and working. Looking back, I don’t know how I stayed on top of it all. I’m going to go ahead and just pat myself on the back for getting it done. LOL.
So yeah, L.A. came at a GREAT time and I enjoyed every single moment of it. Let me know what you guys do when you go to L.A. so maybe I can also check out new places next time I visit!
My Top 3 (in no particular order):
Universal CityWalk Hollywood
I loved CityWalk because we were able to park, and walk around for hours without getting bored. There were many places and amenities along the citywalk, including restaurants, shoppes, a movie theater and Universal Studios theme park. Last February, Oscar Award-winning film Get Out was released and I was excited to go see it at Universal Cinema. I usually don't go to the movies when I go on vacation because I feel it's something I can easily do while at home, but it was such good timing and I wanted to get the Hollywood experience. It was a fun! The theater was beautiful, with a bar for the grown folks, and recliner seats, which everybody loves.
We had lunch at Pink's Hot Dogs, which was OK, nothing spectacular in my personal opinion. After the movie, we had some drinks at Margaritaville because duh. I had nachos, of course, because it's hard for me to skip over anything that comes with sour cream and guacamole. I tried a couple of the margaritas they offered - such a wide selection. It was a great time, and I'm definitely glad that my husband was doing the driving and not me.
Santa Monica Beach/Pier
So, I was surprised by the weather. The first couple of days, it was too cold and foggy to go to the water. Was it fog, or was it smog? In any case, we finally got a chance to make it to the pier when it warmed up and we could see the sun. The beach and the pier were the most relaxing parts of my trip. I skipped the water because it wasn't warm enough for my preference, but I did have tacos at one of the shacks on the beach - because again, sour cream and guacamole.
We then walked over to the pier, which was filled with vendors and people of all age groups, singing, and dancing. The vibes were positive, and it felt really good to see everyone enjoying themselves. At the end of the pier, people were fishing, and some were playing instruments. Couples were locked in embraces, keeping each other warm. We were one of them- sorry, not sorry for the PDA. I'm not sure how it is all of the time, but that day, even amidst the noise, I felt calm and at peace looking out at the Pacific.
Santa Monica Place
We walked a lot when we were in Santa Monica. When we left the pier, we decided to walk across the street and explore. We stumbled upon this amazing, open-air, 3-level shopping mall. There were plenty of upscale stores, and places to eat, but I was most intrigued by the wine bar: Sonoma Wine Garden. We caught a Happy Hour, and it was perfect. We dined on the patio and had a breathtaking view of the ocean from where we sat. The weather, the wine, the scenery - everything was exceptional, and I was happy to share that experience with my husband. The center was so huge, so I'm sure there was a lot more to explore that I missed. I also liked that there was open seating to just chill and hang out on the rooftop from where you could see much of Santa Monica.
We made plenty of stops on this trip. Did I mention we took a bus tour? Yes, my husband's idea. We had a chance to visit Rodeo Drive, the Hollywood Walk of Fame, the Farmer's Market (amazing lunch spots), and Third Street Promenade too. The 3 spots I mentioned in this post just really stuck out for me and I enjoyed them the most. I like going places where I can spend a good amount of time without losing interest quickly. I'm supposed to be heading back west this year. I feel like I may have to make a stop in L.A. sooner than later.
What Should I do next time?