Los Angeles is a vast city, but it’s a good place to stop between flights and have a day of rest, or a day of sightseeing. Here’s how I would spend a 24 hour stopover in LA…
Morning: After arriving in LA, grab some breakfast from the place I’ve had, quite possibly, my favourite breakfast ever. Rose Café is a popular spot for locals and tourists, but there’s plenty of space with indoor and outdoor seating, a beer garden, a market and bakery and a cocktail bar. After a short wait we were seated outdoors, where we received impeccable service in a chilled out atmosphere. The menu is a great mix of different dishes: oats, eggs, salads, sandwiches and pizza. I couldn’t resist a breakfast burrito with scrambled eggs, chorizo, cheese, salsa, avocado and crispy potatoes. It was also served with a mole sauce, which helped create the most incredible start to the day!
Now it’s time to head straight to Venice Beach! Some chill time in between flights is always good, so grab a spot on the sand or wander the Venice Boulevard. There’s also Muscle Beach, where you can people watch, or take part in some form of exercise.
Afternoon: I’m constantly thinking about food, so if you’re like me it might be time for something to eat before anymore exploring. Mercado is a Mexican restaurant, which has a young, hip vibe, whilst being sophisticated. There are 4 locations around LA, making it handy for visiting from different areas of the city. The menu is a mix of smaller and larger dishes, but we decided to share the dip duo and some tacos. The dip duo and a margarita were a fantastic way to start the meal and one I would highly recommend! The steak tacos were also incredible and a definite highlight of the meal!
Once you’ve re-fuelled it’s time to see some of the city and the landmarks that everyone associates with LA. First stop, Beverly Hills, where you can peek in to the lives of the rich and famous. For me this was just a quick stop, but you can marvel at the gorgeous architecture or walk down Rodeo Drive, amazed by the shop windows for as long as you have time for.
Then, head in to the heart of Hollywood where you can stroll along the Hollywood Walk of Fame, spotting many famous names on the ground below you, or if you’re lucky maybe even around you. Unlike Rodeo Drive, there’s more affordable shops here if you want to do some shopping, but if not, it’s time to see the Hollywood Sign!
I must admit that the Hollywood Sign isn’t as impressive as I thought it would be, but it’s definitely still worth seeing! Especially when you view it from Lake Hollywood Park, which was reasonably quiet during the summer afternoon we visited. Walk to the top of the hill for the best view, but there’s plenty of angles here to work with.
Evening: I have 2 options for dinner: Casablanca or The Misfit. If you’re not bored of Mexican food then Casablanca is the place to go. Specialising in hand-made tortillas made Casablanca very appealing to me, and although these are flour (my favourite is corn), it was amazing to watch the women preparing them, and for us to get to eat them hot off the stove. There are plenty of Mexican and seafood dishes to choose from and I was easily persuaded by the calamari fajitas. However, if you do fancy something different The Misfit has a fantastic menu that’s great for sharing amongst friends. We had a delicious selection of mac ‘n’ cheese, crispy brussel sprouts, summer corn salad, baked gnocchi, prime rib nik naks and bbq salmon. The drinks selection was also great, so if you don’t manage dinner here, I would still recommend stopping by for a cocktail or 2.
To round off your day in LA, bar hop around Santa Monica, or take a stroll down to the pier, where you can people watch and take part in the attractions. This is also a lovely place to watch the sunset!