Los Angeles Itinerary: The Ultimate 3 Day Guide

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Welcome to Los Angeles, the city of dreams and endless possibilities! In this vibrant metropolis where the sun-kissed beaches meet the glitz of Hollywood, embark on a three-day adventure to discover the diverse tapestry of culture, iconic landmarks, breathtaking landscapes, and artistic treasures. From the heights of Griffith Observatory to the shores of Santa Monica, and the bustling streets of Downtown to the serene beauty of Malibu, this itinerary is crafted to immerse you in the heart and soul of LA’s rich tapestry. Get ready for an unforgettable journey through the city’s renowned attractions, hidden gems, and the unmistakable charm that defines the essence of Los Angeles.

How long to spend in Los Angeles

Los Angeles is a sprawling metropolis with a vast array of attractions, so the amount of time you need to spend there will depend on your interests and how much you want to see. However, I would recommend spending at least 3-4 days in Los Angeles to get a good feel for the city. This will give you enough time to see some of the most popular attractions, such as the Hollywood sign, Santa Monica Pier, and Universal Studios Hollywood, as well as explore some of the city’s diverse neighborhoods.

If you have more time, you can easily spend a week or more in Los Angeles and still not see everything there is to offer. There are endless things to do, from hiking in the mountains to exploring museums and art galleries.

How to get around in Los Angeles

Los Angeles is a very spread-out city, so it can be difficult to get around without a car. However, there are a few public transportation options available, as well as ride-sharing services like Uber and Lyft.

Here are some of the best ways to get around in Los Angeles:

  • Public transportation: Los Angeles has a bus system, a light rail system, and a subway system. The Metro is the easiest way to get around if you’re staying in Downtown Los Angeles or Hollywood. You can buy a day pass for $7 or a TAP card for $1, which you can then load with money to pay for your fares.
  • Ride-sharing services: Uber and Lyft are popular ride-sharing services in Los Angeles. They are a convenient way to get around, especially if you’re not familiar with the city or if you’re going somewhere that’s not easily accessible by public transportation.
  • Car rental: If you’re planning on doing a lot of exploring outside of the city, it might be worth renting a car. This will give you the flexibility to go wherever you want, whenever you want.
  • Walking: Los Angeles is a very walkable city, especially in the downtown area and Hollywood. If you’re staying in a central location, you might be able to get around without using any transportation at all.

Best time to visit Los Angeles

The best time to visit Los Angeles is during the spring (March-May) or fall (September-November). During these shoulder seasons, the weather is pleasant and sunny, with mild temperatures and less humidity than the summer months. The crowds are also smaller, and you’ll find better deals on hotels and flights.

Here is a more detailed breakdown of the pros and cons of visiting Los Angeles during each season:

Spring (March-May)


  • Pleasant weather with mild temperatures
  • Less humidity than the summer months
  • Smaller crowds
  • Better deals on hotels and flights


  • Wildflower season can bring increased pollen counts, which can be bothersome for people with allergies
  • Some outdoor attractions may have limited hours

Summer (June-August)


  • Warm, sunny weather
  • Extended daylight hours
  • Lots of outdoor events and festivals


  • Hot, dry weather can be uncomfortable for some people
  • Crowds are at their peak
  • Prices for hotels and flights are at their highest

Fall (September-November)


  • Pleasant weather with mild temperatures
  • Less humidity than the summer months
  • Smaller crowds
  • Better deals on hotels and flights


  • Some outdoor attractions may have limited hours
  • Wildflower season is over

Winter (December-February)


  • Mild weather compared to other parts of the United States
  • Fewer crowds
  • Lower prices for hotels and flights


  • Coolest time of year, with temperatures sometimes dipping below 50 degrees Fahrenheit
  • Some outdoor attractions may be closed

Ultimately, the best time to visit Los Angeles depends on your personal preferences. If you’re looking for the best weather, spring or fall are the ideal times to go. If you’re on a budget, winter is the best time to visit. And if you’re looking for the most excitement, summer is the time to be there.

Sim Card and Internet

Buying a SIM card or using a prepaid internet service is a convenient and affordable way to stay connected while traveling in Los Angeles. Here are some options to consider:

Local SIM Cards:

  • T-Mobile: T-Mobile offers a variety of prepaid SIM card plans, including options with unlimited talk, text, and data. You can purchase a SIM card at T-Mobile stores or online.
  • AT&T: AT&T also offers a variety of prepaid SIM card plans, including options with unlimited talk, text, and data. You can purchase a SIM card at AT&T stores or online.
  • Cricket Wireless: Cricket Wireless is a prepaid mobile carrier that offers a variety of affordable plans, including options with unlimited talk, text, and data. You can purchase a SIM card at Cricket Wireless stores or online.


If you have a compatible phone, you can also purchase an eSIM for use in Los Angeles. eSIMs are virtual SIM cards that can be activated directly on your phone. Here are a few providers that offer eSIMs for Los Angeles:

  • Airalo: Airalo is a global eSIM provider that offers a variety of prepaid eSIM plans for Los Angeles.
  • Nomad: Nomad is another global eSIM provider that offers a variety of prepaid eSIM plans for Los Angeles.
  • Holafly: Holafly is a travel eSIM provider that offers a variety of prepaid eSIM plans for Los Angeles.

Prepaid Internet:

You can also purchase a prepaid internet device or rental Wi-Fi hotspot for use in Los Angeles. These devices provide a portable internet connection that you can use with your laptop, smartphone, or tablet. Here are a few providers that offer prepaid internet devices and rental Wi-Fi hotspots for Los Angeles:

  • Glocalme: Glocalme offers a variety of prepaid internet devices and rental Wi-Fi hotspots for Los Angeles.
  • TravelWifi: TravelWifi offers a variety of prepaid internet devices and rental Wi-Fi hotspots for Los Angeles.
  • Xfinity Mobile: Xfinity Mobile offers a prepaid mobile hotspot that you can use in Los Angeles.

Where to stay in Los Angeles

Here are some hotel options in Los Angeles for your upcoming trip:

  • Omni Los Angeles Hotel at California Plaza – Polished rooms & suites in a chic hotel with an outdoor pool & a high-end restaurant/bar. Price: $134 per night.
  • Freehand Los Angeles – Trendy dorms & rooms in a funky lodging with dining & breakfast, plus a rooftop pool & bar. Price: $61 per night.
  • H Hotel – Stylish, retro hotel featuring warm rooms & suites, as well as a cafe/bar & parking. Price: $82 per night.
  • Hollywood Inn Suites Hotel – Chic rooms with minifridges in a laid-back property featuring an outdoor pool & complimentary Wi-Fi. Price: $55 per night.
  • Hotel Indigo Los Angeles Downtown, an IHG Hotel – Streamlined rooms in a polished property offering a chic eatery, a lobby bar & a rooftop restaurant. Price: $119 per night.

Ultimately, the best place to stay in Los Angeles depends on your budget, interests, and travel style. If you’re looking for a luxurious hotel with all the bells and whistles, the Omni Los Angeles Hotel at California Plaza is a great option. If you’re on a budget, the Hollywood Inn Suites Hotel is a good choice. And if you’re looking for something trendy and unique, the Freehand Los Angeles is a great pick.

Here are some additional factors to consider when choosing a hotel in Los Angeles:

  • Location: Los Angeles is a sprawling city, so it’s important to choose a hotel that is in a convenient location for you. If you’re planning on doing a lot of sightseeing, you’ll want to stay in a central location like Downtown Los Angeles or Hollywood. If you’re more interested in spending time at the beach, you’ll want to stay in a hotel in Santa Monica or Venice Beach.
  • Amenities: Some hotels offer a variety of amenities, such as a spa, fitness center, or rooftop pool. If these amenities are important to you, be sure to choose a hotel that has them.
  • Reviews: Before you book a hotel, be sure to read the reviews. This will give you a good idea of what other guests have thought of the hotel.

Walking directions from Getty Center, Los Angeles, CA to Griffith Observatory, Los Angeles, CA

3-day itinerary for a trip to Los Angeles

Day 1: Exploring Iconic Landmarks and Culture


  • Griffith Observatory
    • Start your day early to catch the sunrise and enjoy panoramic views of LA.
  • Hollywood Walk of Fame
    • Explore and take photos with the iconic stars along Hollywood Boulevard.


  • The Getty Center
    • Admire art collections, architecture, and beautiful gardens.
  • Lunch at Santa Monica Pier
    • Enjoy seaside dining options and the vibrant atmosphere.


  • Venice Beach Boardwalk
    • Stroll along the boardwalk, witness street performances, and capture street art.
  • Dinner at Rodeo Drive
    • Experience the glamour of Beverly Hills with upscale dining and shopping.

Day 2: Nature, Museums, and Urban Adventure


  • Runyon Canyon Park
    • Hike for breathtaking views of the city and the Hollywood Sign.
  • Breakfast at Echo Park Lake
    • Relax by the lake and grab breakfast at a nearby cafe.


  • The Broad Museum
    • Explore contemporary art and don’t miss the Infinity Mirrored Room.
  • Lunch at Grand Central Market
    • Enjoy diverse culinary options at this historic market.


  • Arts District Murals
    • Discover vibrant street art and murals in Downtown LA.
  • Dinner at Bradbury Building
    • Marvel at the architecture and grab dinner nearby.

Day 3: Coastal Beauty and Historic Sites


  • El Matador State Beach
    • Visit this scenic beach with dramatic rock formations and caves.
  • Breakfast in Malibu
    • Grab breakfast at a local cafe along the Pacific Coast Highway.


  • Getty Villa
    • Explore ancient art and architecture in a Roman-inspired setting.
  • Lunch in Santa Monica
    • Enjoy a leisurely lunch with ocean views.


  • Sunset Boulevard
    • Drive along Sunset Blvd for iconic landmarks and vibrant nightlife.
  • Farewell Dinner at Urban Light LACMA
    • Enjoy the illuminated art installation and a memorable dinner nearby.

Tips for getting around in Los Angeles

Navigating Los Angeles, a sprawling metropolis with diverse neighborhoods and a vast transportation system, can be both exciting and daunting. Here are some tips to make your journey around the City of Angels smooth and enjoyable:

  1. Embrace Public Transportation: Los Angeles’ Metro system, consisting of buses, light rail lines, and the subway, offers extensive coverage throughout the city. The Metro TAP card is your key to convenient and affordable travel. Purchase a TAP card at Metro stations or online and load it with pay-as-you-go fare or a pass for unlimited rides.
  2. Explore by Bike: Los Angeles is becoming increasingly bike-friendly, with dedicated bike lanes and paths, particularly in the downtown area and along the beaches. Bike-sharing programs like Metro Bike Share and LimeBike allow you to rent and dock bicycles conveniently throughout the city.
  3. Utilize Ride-Sharing Services: Uber and Lyft are ubiquitous in Los Angeles, providing on-demand rides through their mobile apps. These services offer convenient transportation options, especially when public transportation is less accessible or during late-night hours.
  4. Plan Your Route and Consider Traffic: Los Angeles is notorious for its traffic congestion, so planning your route ahead of time is crucial. Use traffic apps like Waze or Google Maps to identify traffic patterns and avoid peak hours. Consider alternative routes or modes of transportation if traffic is expected to be heavy.
  5. Embrace the Walkable Areas: Los Angeles has several walkable neighborhoods, such as downtown, Hollywood, and Santa Monica, where you can explore shops, restaurants, and attractions on foot. Enjoy the vibrant atmosphere and the opportunity to discover hidden gems along the way.
  6. Utilize Local Shuttles: Many hotels and attractions offer complimentary shuttles to nearby destinations, providing convenient transportation options for guests and visitors. Check with your hotel or attraction for shuttle schedules and routes.
  7. Consider Taxis and Car Rentals: Taxis are readily available in Los Angeles, particularly in central areas, and can be a convenient option for short trips or when public transportation is less accessible. For longer trips or exploring beyond the city center, consider renting a car for flexibility and independence.
  8. Be Patient and Enjoy the Journey: Navigating Los Angeles can take time and patience, but it’s part of the experience. Embrace the city’s unique rhythm and enjoy the opportunity to observe the diverse neighborhoods and bustling streets.

Whether you’re exploring the iconic landmarks, immersing yourself in the diverse neighborhoods, or simply enjoying the laid-back beach vibes, these tips will help you navigate Los Angeles with ease and confidence.

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3 months ago

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