2 days in LA: Sightseeing without a car?
May 30, 2014 3:11 PM   Subscribe

I will be in Los Angeles for a couple days next week and have a bit of free time in between some appointments. I won't have a car, I plan on taking the shuttle to my hotel. I'm staying at the Crown Plaza in Beverly Hills. I will be getting in around 11am on Tuesday, but then don't have "anything" to do until 7pm. The following day I will have the afternoon free after 2p. My flight home is Thursday at 5pm, so I in theory have the morning.

Part of the time I'll have to have my luggage with me though, so that could make things complicated. For instance, hotel checkin isn't until 3pm and I get in at 11am. I could just sit in the hotel lobby, but that seems boring. I plan on bringing one carryon bag, though I might try just a back pack. But I need to bring certain things with me that might require a carryon bag amount of space. Ideally, I'd want to get to the ocean at some point (I really just need to put my feet in the ocean anytime I'm near), but I don't know how feasible it is.

This is on a pretty tight budget, so I'd be more interested in exploring and just seeing LA, having never been there. But I have mobility issues, specifically that I tire pretty easily. I was turned on to using the bus system thanks to AskMe, so I'm hoping to make use of it rather than taking cabs.

Is there anything with my limited schedule I can see while I'm there? Anything I *should* see? I think I'll be in the Beverly Hills area. I have no idea what to expect in terms of accessibility, walking, places to rest. And anything I should avoid, or types of situations to watch out for?
posted by [insert clever name here] to Travel & Transportation around Los Angeles, CA (10 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
Hotels will hold luggage for you until you check in and after you check out -- and provide details about public transportation. If you have never been to the West coast, go to the beach at Santa Monica. Or go to Hollywood.
posted by lathrop at 3:25 PM on May 30, 2014 [4 favorites]

Is $70 too much for Tuesday? This Grey Line tour leaves at 1:30 from a place quite close to the Santa Monica Pier (so you could visit the ocean right before). It lasts 4 hours and brings you around to several big sights. They are all very touristy places, but you won't have to worry about walking, will have a comfortable seat the whole time and can pack in a lot of things. If something looks cool, you have time to go back Wednesday or Thursday. I took a similar tour from them back in 2006 and enjoyed it.

I'd stop at your hotel and drop off your bag before heading out to the beach.
posted by soelo at 3:37 PM on May 30, 2014

The downtown / Central Market area is super walkable. You can go from there up the hill to see MoCA and the Gehry debacle, and then up to Our Lady of the Angels, which is pretty incredible. From there, back down to Olvera Street & Union Station, Chinatown, etc.

That's a full day of walking, with awesome street food along the way, and most of these sights/sites are free to enter and wander.
posted by luriete at 3:42 PM on May 30, 2014

If your priority is the beach, you can take the Big Blue Bus all the way down Pico to Santa Monica.
posted by brujita at 4:38 PM on May 30, 2014 [1 favorite]

Agreeing that the hotel will hold your luggage before and after you check in, so don't let that worry you.

You'll be near LACMA, so you can visit Tuesday afternoon or Thursday morning (the museum is closed on Wednesdays). It should be easily accessible by bus, though I think you may need to transfer. LACMA general admission is $15, but there's public art to see for free if you just want to hang out.

From LACMA you can take the bus up Fairfax to Farmer's Market, which is seriously unmissable.

Welcome and have fun!
posted by scody at 5:32 PM on May 30, 2014 [1 favorite]

Bus - or UberX - to Santa Monica then rent a bike at the Santa Monica Bike Center.
posted by 26.2 at 5:53 PM on May 30, 2014

Uber is amazing in LA, I'd look into that.
posted by fshgrl at 6:04 PM on May 30, 2014

Oh, hey, I remember your last question; glad you made it out here! I live by the pier so if you come down here and want some company I can probably meet you. FYI, there are benches everywhere in DTSM so you should be able to rest easily. Shoot me a MeMail if you're interested.
posted by Room 641-A at 6:34 PM on May 30, 2014 [1 favorite]

If you like art at all, LACMA is totally worth it. I spent a whole day there last time I was out and only saw about half of what I wanted to see. If you go, definitely prioritize by which exhibits you most want to see. Unless you're one of those people that hustles through museums.
posted by Ghostride The Whip at 6:59 PM on May 30, 2014 [1 favorite]

It's going to take you a healthy portion of your four hours between 'getting in' and check-in at the hotel to just get from the airport to the hotel if you're taking bus/train(/bus) to get there, just FYI.

Luckily, you are a short walk to the ritziest part of Beverly Hills, the golden triangle. If you look on a map for your hotel, you can follow Beverly Dr. North two major blocks to Wilshire Blvd. I couldn't afford anything here and wouldn't want to buy it if I had the dough, and still I love people-watching in the area. There's tons and tons of places to just sit on the sidewalk (either at a cafe or even just on the street corner) and people-watch. Window shopping is glorious or horrifying depending on your disposition. There's lots of "interesting" art on the street in this part of the city, especially if you can hoof it all the way up to Santa Monica Blvd, where the Beverly Gardens sculpture park is. If you don't feel like walking all around BH, just hop on the Trolley Tour at Rodeo & Dayton Way. It's 5 bucks and you get a big narrated tour of BH.

The next day, when you are free after 2pm, is when I'd hop on the bus (the 7 bus will pick you up at the corner of Pico and Beverly Dr, just South of your hotel) headed west and go to the Santa Monica Pier to watch the sun set and stick your toes in the ocean.

LACMA or maybe MoMA downtown would be nice the morning before you leave. If you make it downtown, it's a pretty easy trip on the train to the airport (well, most of the way to the airport: there's a free shuttle you have to take from the train station to LAX, derp).
posted by carsonb at 9:40 PM on May 30, 2014 [2 favorites]

« Older My houseguest will be staying for weeks but...   |   Why do employers promote HSA over PPO? Newer »
This thread is closed to new comments.