The Self-Realization Fellowship Lake Shrine is a Temple, Shrine, and beautiful Meditation Garden open to anyone who seeks a quiet oasis for meditation, prayer, or receiving the teachings of Indian yogi and guru Paramahansa Yogananda, who is credited for introducing millions of westerners to the teachings of meditation.
The Huntington Library, Art Collections and Botanical Gardens is one of the world’s most extensive cultural, research, and educational centers.
The Library houses over 420,000 rare books and over 7 million manuscripts largely spanning British and American history.
Notable works include the Ellesmere manuscript of Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales, a Gutenberg Bible on vellum, the double-elephant folio edition of Audubon’s Birds of America, and a world-class collection of the early editions of Shakespeare’s works.
The art collection showcases many 18th- and 19th-century British and French art, and1690s to the 1950s American art, including Thomas Gainsborough’s Blue Boy, Mary Cassatt’s Breakfast in Bed, and Edward Hopper’s The Long Leg.
The Botanical Gardens spans 120 acres and includes the Desert Garden, the Japanese Garden, the Rose Garden, and the Chinese garden. The camellia collection is one of the largest in the country. Other important botanical attractions include the Subtropical, Herb, Jungle, and Palm gardens.
The Watts Towers, Towers of Simon Rodia, or Nuestro Pueblo (“our town”), are a collection of 17 interconnected sculptural structures within the Simon Rodia State Historic Park. The towers were designed and constructed solely by Sabato Rodia over a period of 33 years, from 1921 to 1954, and are an example of Italian-American naïve art. Materials include steel rebar, concrete wrapped with wire mesh and pieces of porcelain, tile, and glass. The structures are decorated with found objects, including bottles, ceramic tiles, seashells, figurines, mirrors, and much more.
Beautiful recreational park and lake in the heart of Echo Park.
The Cecil Hotel(now rebranded as Stay on Main) in Downtown Los Angeles (640 S. Main Street) is a budget hotel with 600 guest rooms. The Hotel is known for several suicides and its criminal activity which includes three murders.Most notably, the hotel was the reported residence for serial killers Richard Ramirez in 1985 and Jack Unterweger in 1991.
The Hollywood Bowl is a world-famous amphitheater that hosts performances of jazz, classical, and modern orchestral and vocal music.
“It’s big, it’s beautiful, it’s outdoors, it’s filled with music, and you can bring your own booze.” — BRÅVES
The Hollywood Forever Cemetery is one of the oldest cemeteries in Los Angeles, and is the final resting place of some of the city’s most significant cultural icons. The cemetery also hosts many cultural events, including music concerts and summer movie screenings.
“We saw Bon Iver perform here at dawn. Everyone stayed the night in the cemetery and then Justin and co. took the stage at dawn. There’s something unsettling yet surprisingly chill about sleeping amongst the dead and waking to a life-bringing force such as music.” — BRÅVES
Griffith Observatory sits on the south-facing slope of Mount Hollywood in Griffith Park and provides a wide array of space- and science-related displays and exhibitions entirely for free to the public.
“We don’t know if it’s underrated but, we were just admiring Griffith Observatory last night. Truly a timeless structure and when lit up at night, a beacon of hope for humanity in the City of Angels.” — BRÅVES
Santa Monica State Beach is a California State Park featuring a boardwalk, wide sandy beaches, and Pacific Park, the historic amusement park on the iconic Santa Monica Pier.
“The beach near Main + Ashland in Santa Monica: Parking is easy and the beach usually isn’t too crowded and there’s a ton of food and shopping very close by. It’s the most all-in-one beach situation you can get while staying in a single parking spot.” — Baths
The 2nd Street Tunnel is a widely filmed and photographed landmark under Bunker Hill in Downtown Los Angeles. It has been called “the most recognizable city landmark most Americans have never heard of,” by the Los Angeles Times.
The Ennis House is an iconic Los Angeles architectural landmark situated in the hills of the Los Feliz neighborhood. It has been featured in a number of films, including Blade Runner and House on Haunted Hill, for its unique aesthetic designed by famed architect Frank Lloyd Wright.
California State Route 1, more commonly known as the Pacific Coast Highway or simply PCH, is a major north/south highway with over 650 miles of scenic views of the Pacific Ocean.
Known as the “Whale Capital of the West,” Dana Point Harbor is a scenic coastal destination for dining, shopping, and seaside activities.
Ex-general store turned restaurant serves hearty American eats in a setting out of a Western film.
“Sometimes when it’s smoggy at night it looks like the Eye of Sauron in the land of Mordor.” — BRÅVES
“Another landmark would be the Culver City hotel, a 1920s building with a upstairs bar. It is certainly underrated, especially during happy hour.” — BRÅVES
“Beverly Hills Hotel. Stay simply for the Polo Lounge.” — BRÅVES
“The Bradbury Building downtown is a stunner. So many moments have been filmed there and it wraps you up in that nostalgia of very old Hollywood.” – Shana Halligan
“Off the beaten path is The Gamble House in Pasadena. (Doc Brown’s house in Back To The Future). Japanese, mid century modern, [a] natural aesthetic that is so unique and incredible.” – Shana Halligan
Okay, I lied on having only food spots because I can’t pass up the opportunity to highlight the thrift stores on Melrose Avenue. When I was there last year I was there I copped more items in a day than I did the entire year prior. I won’t name you a specific one because they’re all so good. Just have a stroll and discover them yourself!
“You can explore the nature gardens at the museum for different activities, or
take a tour through the museum’s butterfly pavilion. It’s the best.” – Reckling
Recommended in the Los Angeles edition of the Waterloo Sparkling Sessions, presented by Waterloo Sparkling Water.