Los Angeles

Making any trip memorable and exciting requires knowing the right places to go at the right times. Los Angeles is a gigantic city, and if we include Los Angeles county, it only gets bigger. With so much to see and do, one can get lost in the fray and miss out on some of the best this destination has to offer. So are you ready for the time of your life? Then get ready for Los Angeles, California.

As a native of this great place, I will first have to tell you it’s all about the beaches. There is nothing more memorable than the perfect sunset stretching out over the Pacific, or gazing across the glassy blue oceans dotted with giant kelp. The beaches going from Santa Monica and south of Santa Monica tend to be flat, sandy, and more populated. The beaches north of Los Angeles tend to be more rugged, isolated, and in my opinion better. If you are looking for flat sand and people try Hermosa, Newport, or Venice. Venice beach is world famous and a must see. The boardwalk is full of vendors selling unique crafts and clothing. Your best bet is to go on Sunday a few hours before sundown. That’s because you will get to see a tradition decades old, a giant drum circle with hundreds of drummers and dancers! Your best bet for a northern Los Angeles beach is Malibu. You will find it on Pacific Coast Highway north of Sunset Blvd. In Malibu you will find ample dining, scenic coastline, and mega mansions. If you find yourself driving further north, you’re in for more beauty and nature. If you can make it to Santa Barbara, consider yourself very lucky.

As for city excursions you will have to sift through the hundreds of opportunities you are presented with. From amusement parks, to shopping and dining, to concerts and clubs, Los Angeles really does have it all. You’re going to need some help that extends beyond this article so I would look at the paper L.A. Weekly, they are online too. It’s a Los Angeles Staple. Or, check out Lonely Planet’s list of things to do in Los Angeles. To get a true sense of what the city is about I would recommend trying to make it to the following places:

Hollywood and the Hollywood Bowl. It’s best to go during the evening and into the night. Take the 101 freeway and exit Highland. Park in a paid lot (you will get a ticket faster than lightening strikes so it pays to be safe) and feel free to walk up and down the streets. The clubs in downtown Hollywood are around Hollywood Blvd. and Cahuenga Blvd. For West Hollywood Clubs try the intersections of Santa Monica Blvd. and La Cienega Blvd. Also, for great clubs try Sunset Blvd. East of Dohney Dr.

Amusement Parks. We have so many of them. If you go on a week day and get your schedule right, try to hit two in one day. The major ones are: Disney Land and Disney California Adventure, Six Flags Magic Mountain, Universal Studios, and Knott’s Berry Farm.

Shopping. L.A.’sfashion district in downtown Los Angeles is amazing. You will find clothes and accessories from all over the world. Beware of imitation name brands and cheap electronic goods. For more upscale costlier items try Rodeo Drive in Beverly Hills, The Westfield Century City, or The Beverly Center.

Nature. The outskirts of Los Angeles city are filled with miles of hiking trails. It is one of the few places in the world where you can go from desert to ocean to forest and snow all in the same day. The Santa Monica mountain range has many available hiking trails. Other areas to hike are in Griffith Park, Topanga Canyon, and Angeles National forest.

Start Your Cruise Vacation From Los Angeles

ntroducing Los Angeles

Los Angeles, also minimally called LA, is the largest city in the state of California, and the second largest city in the United States. Positioned on a expansive flat area in the South of California, LA is surrounded by extensive forests, huge mountain peaks, the blue Pacific Ocean and parched deserts.

Starting as a insignificant township in the 18th century, the city started to develop about a hundred years later due to the coming of the railroad, and expanded rapidly until the present. Nowadays the urban region is centered in LA County, but extends into San Bernardino County, Riverside County, Ventura County and Orange County.

The city is home to nearly 18 million people who originate from all parts of the globe. Los Angeles is a city of great diversity, incorporating a big Hispanic population, a major Asian community, and large populations of many other national origins.

Los Angeles is an important hub for culture, retail, business and global trade, however it is internationally famous for being the home of the globe’s entertainment studios. The glitz of Sunset Strip, Hollywood, Bel Air and Beverly Hills has cemented Los Angeles’s reputation as an American dream further driving the region’s massive growth.

The popularity of Los Angeles’s cruise terminals is greater than ever, and today over 300 cruises start from the port each year. Destinations on offer include the Mexican Riviera and Hawaiian islands. Choosing a cruise from Los Angeles makes for a memorable vacation.

Los Angeles Cruise Terminals

Los Angeles’s San Pedro bay holds 2 cruise ports, the World Cruise Center at the Port of Los Angeles (commonly called simply San Pedro), and four miles eastwards Long Beach Cruise Terminal adjacent to the Port of Long Beach. Cruise ships berth at the World Cruise Center, except most (but not all) Carnival-affiliated cruise ships which berth at Long Beach.

World Cruise Center Cruise Terminals
There are 2 cruise ship terminals at the World Cruise Center, Terminal 91-92 and Terminal 93. Capacity is two to three big cruise ships. Each cruise terminal has the basic amenities, such as eateries, parking areas, cab ranks, shops, bars and check in desks.

Long Beach Cruise Terminal
The Long Beach Cruise Terminal was constructed by Carnival Cruiselines, and opened in 2003. The terminal is inside the round dome that was formerly home to Spruce Goose, now located in Evergreen museum, Oregon. Long Beach cruise terminal possesses one 1100ft pier able to handle one full size cruise liner. The terminal offers all the basic services, such as check in, shops, parking zones, cab ranks, cafes and bars. Adjacent to the terminal sits the historic Queen Mary ocean liner.

5 Best Things To Do in San Pedro/Long Beach (Editor’s choice!)

1 Los Angeles Maritime Museum (San Pedro)
Discover the past and present of the harbor of LA at the Los Angeles Maritime Museum, sited at the 1941 Municipal Ferry Terminal. Check out hundreds of displays such as photos, original maps, machines and models of important vessels and boats. Sited near Harbor and 6th around half mile south of San Pedro cruise facility.

2 Ports O’ Call (San Pedro)
Planned to resemble a New England fishing community, Ports O’ Call is a great trip. There’s lots of restaurants, bars, galleries and shops, beside charming paved paths. There’s also a harbor for boat journeys around the bay, whale watching cruises and day trips to Catalina Island. Ports O’Call is around a mile southwards from San Pedro cruise terminal.

3 Red Car Trolley Ride (San Pedro)
The Red Car Line is a one and a half mile long trolley service interconnecting the Marina and the World Cruise Center. The trolley has drop-offs at Ports O’ Call and the LA Maritime Museum. The Red Cars are completely refurbished to their former glory, with upholstered seats, wood panelled sides and ornate brass fittings.

4 Queen Mary (Long Beach)
In 1936 Queen Mary commenced service for the Cunard Cruise Line and she operated for 30 years, including a time of military service in WWII. The liner crossed the Atlantic ocean 1001 times, posting crossing time records on several occasions. In the late 1960s the liner arrived in Long Beach to become maritime museum and hotel.
Located next to Long Beach cruise port.

5 Aquarium of The Pacific and Shoreline Aquatic Park
Be introduced to the frigid environment of the Arctic, the rich reefs of the Tropics and the warm seas of California at this marvelous aquarium. Come face-to-face with the ocean’s ultimate predators in the large Shark Lagoon. Subsequent to your tour to the aquarium walk around adjacent Shoreline Aquatic Park, a lovely area of parkland by the sea. Located just across the bay from Long Beach port, about 2 miles by car.

Picking A Cruise From Los Angeles

The favorite itinerary from LA cruise port is a trip following the western coastline of Mexico. Baja California itineraries typically stop at Ensenada and Catalina island, whereas Mexican Riviera voyages stop at Mazatlan, Puerto Vallarta and Cabo. More extended voyages available include trips to the Hawaiian islands, and non-return trans Panama canal voyages to the eastern US. In early summer several cruises to Vancouver are on offer, as ships position read for a summer season of Alaska cruising. Most cruise lines offer sampler cruises for UK passengers departing mainly from Dover and Southampton so you can see if you are best suited to a particular cruise line.Go to www.cruisesfromsouthampton.uk

Travelling To The Cruise Terminal From Los Angeles International Airport

Join the supershuttle service to the required cruise port. About a 40 minute ride

Top 10 Attractions in Los Angeles

While Los Angeles will always be associated with movies and movie stars, it is also a culturally vibrant city that boasts a range of interesting attractions from prestigious art museums and galleries to fabulous theater, both well-known productions and smaller fringe shows. Find extensive art collections at the J. Paul Getty Center, high action at Universal Studios Hollywood, and cruise the Hollywood Walk of Fame.

Following are top attractions in Los Angeles:

1. Universal Studios Hollywood:

Go behind the scenes on sets where movies are made. Enjoy thrilling rides, shows and attractions that bring movie action to life.

2. J. Paul Getty Center:

This spectacular museum boasts an impressive collection of artists such as Van Gogh, Monet and Cezanne. Visit the architectural triumph of its six buildings and gardens.

3. Hollywood Walk of Fame:

From silent film stars of yesteryear to the modern action heroes of today’s blockbusters, the Hollywood Walk of Fame is a tribute to over 2,000 artists who have made significant contributions to film, radio, television, theatre and the recording industries.

4. Griffith Park:

Griffith Park is the United States’ largest municipal park, encompassing over 4,107 acres of natural terrain covered with California oak trees, wild sage and Manzanita.

5. Walt Disney Concert Hall:

Home of the Los Angeles Philharmonic, this concert hall is designed to be one of the most acoustically sophisticated in the world.

6. Venice Beach:

This three-mile beach is known for its artists, street performers and funky atmosphere.

7. Hollywood Forever Cemetery:

This cemetery is the final resting place of some of Hollywood’s celebrities and other luminaries.

8. Union Station:

Union Station, built in 1939, is considered to be the last of America’s great rail stations.

9. California Science Center:

Formerly known as the California Museum of Science and Industry, this interactive museum includes exhibits such as World of Life, Creative World, World of the Pacific and Worlds Beyond.

10. Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County:

As the largest natural and historical museum in the Western United States and an active research center, NHM safeguards more than 33 million spectacular, diverse specimens and artifacts covering 4.5 billion years of history.

Enjoy the many attractions Los Angeles offers. From thrill-riding at Universal Studios Hollywood to viewing the famous artwork housed in the J. Paul Getty Center to cruising along Venice Beach, you’ll find a world of adventure amongst the fashion, film and fun of Los Angeles.

Hilary Basile is a writer for MyGuidesUSA.com. At MyGuidesUSA.com, you will find valuable tips and resources for handling life’s major events. Whether you’re planning a wedding, buying your first home, anxiously awaiting the birth of a child, contending with a divorce, searching for a new job, or planning for your retirement, you’ll find answers to your questions at [http://myguidesusa.com]

StateGuidesUSA.com ([http://www.stateguidesusa.com]), part of the MyGuidesUSA.com network of sites, provides comprehensive information for those living, working and traveling in the United States via 50 individual state portals. Find information for California at [http://california.stateguidesusa.com]