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October 31, 2013
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I am fine at many things, good at a handful more and great at just a few but there is one category in which I am second to none (but R, but I now consider us one for the sake of me being the best at this thing) and that is touring people around Los Angeles.

Over the past 31 days I have had not one or three but eight people visit me here in La La Land. Two of them came for work and one of them was my mother, but that doesn’t diminish the fact that I have been doing some serious showing of this city. As a result I’ve developed what I believe to be a damn-near perfect list of things for people to do and see – a Chinese menu of the Southland, if you will (and I have in several e-mails, complete with links).

Here – exclusively for you (unless you’d like to share it with, say, BuzzFeed, which would be totally fine) is my list:

The Hiking Options

East Side – Early AM uphill walk to the Griffith Observatory via the Fern Dell Trail (just beyond The Trails Cafe) followed by brunch at Home on Hillhurst

West Side – Sunset Los Liones hike via Los Liones Trail just off Sunset Blvd followed by beers and fried seafood at The Reel Inn

The 4-Hour Venice Tour

  1. Park at Brooks Street on Abbott Kinney. 
  2. Walk and shop Abbott with a mandatory stop for a coffee at the Tom’s Store (I’m over Intelligentsia) and snack at GTA 
  3. Explore the famous Venice Canals (walk west on Venice Blvd then cut in South on Mildred Ave)
  4. People watch on the boardwalk (access it straight off the canals, and don’t forget to stop at Muscle Beach and the Skate Park)
  5. Beer, guac and chips at Venice Ale House 
  6. Boardwalk back to Brooks –> home 

Historic Beverly Hills & Hollywood By Car 

  • Start on Rodeo/Beverly Hills area to see the famous sites and get a cupcake out of the Sprinkles vending machine
  • By car, travel up Rodeo through Beverly Hills to Sunset. If funds allow, stop for a drink at The Beverly Hills Hotel
  • Proceed on Sunset through the strip for the music history tour (Viper Room, Whisky A-Go-Go and Chateau Marmot sighting)
  • Head north on La Brea toward Hollywood Blvd. but make a right onto Hawthorne before you hit Hollywood. That puts you behind The Roosevelt Hotel which is where you’ll park to see the sights. Walk through the old hotel then straight onto Hollywood Blvd for Grauman’s, the star walk and Dolby Theater and El Capitan. If hungry grab a burger at 25 Degrees inside The Roosevelt. 

West Hollywood Shopping Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner (yes, how to spend an entire day shopping in WeHo including proper stops for three meals and a snack)

K-Town By Night

Additional Gems 

Malibu Wines – spend an entire day or just an hour (seasonal schedule applies). Stop for food at Malibu Seafood to bring into the winery.

Santa Anita Race Track – season racing at this insanely beautiful park outside Pasadena. Required stop for dumplings at Din Tai Fun with your winnings.

DOWNTOWN! It deserves an entire category, but give the draw of other famous landmarks I’ll leave it at MOCA/Geffen for art, Disney Concert Hall for a quick tour, Mas Malo for dinner and 7 Grand for a drink after.

And my special secret amazing view of LA drinks spot: Rooftop on Wilshire

Good luck out there, drink plenty of water and remember to never go anywhere without checking the traffic!

 

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