Love it or loath it, Los Angeles demands attention. This is, after all the home of Hollywood, Muscle Beach and a rich assortment of denizens desperately chasing the 'American Dream'. But, there's far more to California's largest city than its hall-of-fame clichés, from rich architectural delights to a great outdoors that rivals that of any city on earth.
Culture & creativity
As the world's undisputed centre for stage and screen, LA is packed full of cultural and creative delights. There are museums and galleries to explore, daringly contemporary art spaces to discover and enough iconic music venues to keep even the most ardent muso busy for months. Revisit the city's rock n roll routes at the legendary Whiskey a Go Go, head to the Chinese Theatre to catch the fervour of a world premiere or head to Venice Beach to take in weird and whacky street performances unlike anything you've seen before.
While many fail in their quest for fame and fortune, some also hit the jackpot. And, there's something quite eye-popping about the ritz and glitz of those that have turned their LA fantasy into a multi-million dollar reality. In seaside suburbs of Pacific Palisades and Malibu, vast mansions look out to sweeping Pacific Coast views, while up in the Hollywood Hills, evocative names such as Mulholland Drive hark back to the heady days of Elvis and the Beatles. Hiring a car is a great way to explore, and to get a small taste of the lives of LA's rich and famous.
While Los Angeles sprawls for miles across vast swathes of the Southern California coast, just a short hop from its downtown is some truly stunning countryside. Inland, hiking trails zig-zag across rugged mountain landscapes and flower-dotted hillsides, while on the coast endless golden sands set the scene for stunning sunsets and some of the USA's best surf spots.