LALLALA! Los Angeles is the first city I stepped in North America, and also the last. After three months of roaming around the continent, my first impression didn’t change – beautiful weirdos. L.A. is full of eccentric people compared to other big cities I visited in the US.
On my first day of exploring the city, my childhood friend take me to the Hollywood Walk of Fame. We were greeted by out of shape superheroes wearing filthy costumes (that’s how I got my impression of the place) that wanted to pose with us for money, and fake wanna-be musicians hawking their discover-me CDs for a little tip. It’s fun to see and read the stars but it seemed to go on for ever and we had to stop and look for a place to eat.
On the second day, we went to the Griffith Observatory, a cultural attraction that offers spectacular views from the Pacific Ocean to Downtown L.A. from its perch on Mt. Hollywood in Griffith Park. The observatory is amazing for those who love science and astronomy. Then, we went to Rodeo Drive in Beverly Hills. The shopping district embodies all the glam of the big screen. Flagship locations for some of the prestigious brands in the world are lined up, all polished and elegant. The price range didn’t fit my budget, so I just filled my vision of the architecture and elegant fashion trends. And to finish the day with a relaxing atmosphere, we drove to Santa Monica Pier. It offers a blend of urban energy, beach town atmosphere, world-class oceanfront hotels and a glorious Pacific Ocean setting.
The last two weeks of my vacation, I spend it in L.A., to meet up with friends again and also to visit a few more of the tourist attractions – Getty Villa, Getty Center, The Broad and Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA).
The Getty Villa is modeled after a first-century Roman country house. It houses the J. Paul Getty Museum’s collection of approximately 44,000 Greek, Roman, and Etruscan antiquities. The Getty Center is a campus of the Getty Museum and other programs of the Getty Trust. It is well known for its architecture, gardens, and views overlooking Los Angeles. The Museum’s collection of European paintings, sculpture, and decorative arts span all four pavilions at the Getty Center.
The day after the Thanksgiving, we have a wonderful experience at the Broad museum. Admission is free and you can get a reservation online. However, when we checked, it’s already full until 2016. When we arrived the building, the line was so long and wrapped the whole building. While waiting in line, there was a guy who approached us and asked if we wanted tickets because he had spare to be given away. So, we hurriedly said yes! Broad is a contemporary museum in downtown L.A. It is home to the 2,000 works of art in the Broad collection, which is among the most prominent holdings of postwar and contemporary art worldwide. Aside from being lucky on the tickets, we were so inspired and happy for all the cool artworks.
On my L.A. finale, I went to Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA), the largest art museum in the western United States. The museum has over 120,000 objects dating from antiquity to present, encompassing the geographic world and nearly the entire history of art. LACMA was like an encyclopedic collection of art…I was in ecstatic when I entered the first building.
L.A. is known for its entertainment attractions. One of which is the Universal Studios Hollywood. Three blocks of entertainment, dining and shopping. What I loved most in this place are the character shops…yeah, the child inside me kicked in when I saw the shops lined up. Other nice places are Glendale Galleria and The Grove. Manette, my former colleague brought me to The Grove. We were able to watch the finale rehearsals of the Dancing of the Stars. And we had the best Brazilian BBQ in town in the Farmer’s Market.
Last but not the least experience in the West Coast…visiting Disneyland Park. My dear friend, Charity, flew from San Francisco just to meet me again, and she really wanted me to see the magical place.We had a magnificent time in the fantasy land!