Los Angeles residents are infamous for having a city full of experiences they’ve never experienced. While they’re certainly not alone, there’s something about that “California vibe” that makes it harder to get around to doing the things you moved there for.
How many of these things did you once say you were going to do, but haven’t checked off your list yet?
You can visit the beach and go skiing in the same weekend! That’s one of LA’s claims to fame, but somehow throwing on a swimsuit, grabbing a towel and napping on the beach gets done, while gathering up the snowboard and all your cold weather peripherals, then making the two hour drive to Big Bear – not so much.
See a TV show taping
For friends and family out of state, the chance to see stars in person and watch favorite shows being created seems like the best time. But after a long week at work, driving to Burbank, standing in line (often for hours) without being assured a seat, and then sitting through a three hour taping just doesn’t appeal. I’ll see it when it’s all tied up with a bow on broadcast, thanks.
Ride the subway
Yes there is a public rail system and it’s called the Metro. Eventually some group is going to make riding it cool the way hipsters have brought back biking and hiking. The Metro is a rather good transit system with two subways and four above ground train lines. When people learn this they get excited, especially when they learn it goes direct to LAX. But when the next flight rolls around, we’re all too concerned about getting there on time to make that trip our first Metro test. Just give it a whirl sometime on a lazy Saturday. The next time you have to get to LAX during rush hour, you’ll be glad you did.
Visit the Museum of Contemporary Art/Natural History Museum/La Brea Tar Pits
The downtown area is so rich in cultural resources and we all want to make ourselves better people by visiting them, right? But it’s so much work! First there’s changing out of our PJs, then putting the address in the GPS, fighting the weekend traffic, and finding parking…ugh! How much can you ask of one person on a Saturday? There are only 52 of them every year you know.
Visit Catalina Island
It’s a town where they only drive golf carts! Who doesn’t want to see that? The town of Avalon, on Catalina Island is just a 60 minute ferry ride away, much better than spending that hour sitting in the car to get to a mainland public beach. The serenity of Catalina is something most LA residents could use, but making the trip is just one of those things that never seem to get done.
Find the Farmer’s Market
Are your friends working for the Farmer’s Market? Every weekend they blow up your Facebook feed with pictures of apples as big as their head and genuine, dirt covered veggies. You’ve got to get some of that! Wait, it’s where? Maybe you’ll hit Ralph’s produce section for just one more weekend…
Go to the comedy clubs
“Oh you went to The Groundlings/Upright Citizens Brigade/Improv/Laugh Factory/Comedy Store?” we ask our neighbor’s aunt visiting from the Midwest. Was it good? Of course we’re going to do that someday since we know that all those famous comedians we pay to watch on cable got their start in places just like this. Plan a night and go, then hope the headliner doesn’t have a joke centered on mocking the locals. But if they do, you’ll be their dream come true.
Check out a Cinespia Cemetery Screening
It sounds gross – watching a movie sitting on top of graves – but it’s one of those things every LA resident intends to do, just because you can’t do it anywhere else. If you’ve been pushing it off because of the ick factor you should know that seating is actually on a lawn, not the gravesites, and that this is a top notch event with a full staff running the show. If you’re still a little skeptical, check out the Cinespia official website.
Try new foods
With one of the most diverse populations on earth, Los Angeles is a foodie heaven. Where else can you have a Beverly Hills breakfast, Chinese lunch and Turkish dinner made by people who learned the recipes in their homelands? Often the problem is knowing where to go that will give you the perfect experience vs. food poisoning. Thank heaven for Yelp.
Be an extra on a movie or show
This is just a matter of getting signed up with one of the extras casting agencies because frankly, once you’ve gotten the call to be an extra most of us are probably going to follow through. It sounds fun and our friends who have done it had a blast; some even made a few bucks. It just keeps getting buried down there on the to-do list.
- License: Creative Commons image source
- License: Creative Commons image source
Kelly Braden is a freelance writer for a number of entertainment and travel blogs, and is a life-long resident of the San Fernando Valley in southern California. Though she lives quite close to most of these attractions, she is guilty of not making time to visit them. If you’re looking to hit the road and see some of these LA hotspots, and need to buy new tires for your car before you can do so, Kelly recommends the LA Discount Tire Centers.