When people think of California, they think of Los Angeles. Sunny weather, sandy beaches, and beautiful celebrities walking around living their best life. In reality, the heavy smog hovers over the city and covers the sun; the homeless have made the beach their home, and celebrities are hard to spot. Four million people are living in L.A., which would explain why traffic is horrendous at all times of the day. Remember, in the movie Clueless, Cher's dad wanted her home in 20 minutes because everywhere in L.A. takes 20 minutes? Well, now it's more like 45 mins to an hour to get anywhere.
Despite the negatives, I love L.A. There are fantastic hikes, amazing workout classes, and it is one of the top vegan food hot spots. Ben planned us a fun California road trip, and one of our stops was L.A. Here is everything I did during my stay in beautiful Los Angeles.
Angels Flight Railway
Angels Flight Railway
is the world's shortest railway that gives passengers a ride up the hill between Hill Street and Grand Avenue on Bunker Hill. The one-way fare is $1. It was the best $1 spent on the short ride. I recommend stopping here before heading to the Grand Central Market or visiting The Broad
museum houses the world's most prominent collection of postwar and contemporary art.The 120,000-square-foot building features two floors of gallery space. The building itself is art, named "the veil and the vault" because the vault is enveloped on all sides by the "veil," an airy, honeycomb-like structure that spans across the block-long gallery and provides filtered natural daylight.
My favorite pieces at The Broad were:
Hustle'n'Punch By Kaikai And Kiki by Takashi Murakami
Under The Table by Robert Therrien
Balloon Dog by Jeff Koons
The Class by Taryn Toomey
I heard about The Class by Taryn Toomey
on The Mind Body Green Podcast
. The class is designed to work through any mental or emotional pain through the movement of the body. There was a lot of repetition of a single move like jumping jacks for a full song that lasted at least 4-6 minutes without stopping. When your body starts to scream back at you, you power through and channel that pain to something else. I enjoyed the class, and I was sore for the next couple of days. I highly recommend this class to everyone just for the experience.
Hiking Griffith Observatory
What's excellent about L.A. is that it's a big city with lots of great hikes. If you live in L.A. and can't afford the studio classes, you can get a good workout from climbing the hills. The Griffith Observatory
is a great place to look up at the stars and take in the beautiful views of the city of L.A. The hike is a good incline climb. On our way back down the hill, we got our first celebrity sighting! See, even celebs hike.
The best way to try a bunch of vegan goodies is to go to a vegan food festival. I wrote a blog post on everything I did and ate at VegFest L.A. check it out here: What I Eat: VegFest L.A.
I love rooftop bars. Spire 73
is the tallest open-air bar in the western hemisphere. The bar is located on the 73rd floor of the Intercontinental Hotel in downtown L.A. There are lots of seating, firepits, and the best part, the breathtaking view of Los Angeles.
restaurant is owned by the musician, Moby, who is also an animal activist. All profits made at Little Pine go to animal organizations. The first time I tried Little Pine was at Coachella. They had a pop-up restaurant in the VIP area. Ben and I loved it so much that we had to visit the restaurant in L.A. Check out my full post on Little Pine here: Little Pine
There are so many vegan restaurants all over Los Angeles. Sometimes it's hard to decide where to go, but most of the time it's best to choose based on the location. After visiting The Broad museum, we had dinner at Shojin
, located in downtown L.A. Shojin is an all vegan Japanese restaurant that caters to the health conscious. On the menu, each dish has a description of what vegetables are in the meal, including the health benefits these vegetables have. We enjoyed the ramen and a few of their sushi rolls. Everything was delicious, and the service was exceptional.
in West Hollywood is a must go restaurant even if you're not vegan. It's super trendy with the best instagrammable cocktails. I love sitting outside on their patio. We stopped in for lunch on our way out of L.A. and grabbed a salad, a vegan tamale, and a snow cone margarita. Gracias Madre was the cherry on top of a perfect trip to L.A.