Vacationing in LA's east-end?
December 20, 2006 9:47 PM   Subscribe

Stuff to do in the eastern reaches of the Los Angeles vicinity?

So I'm doing an in-town vacation with my family during the holiday week (December 23-29th), and we'd like to explore the reaches of LA east of LA proper. This means Covina, Rancho Cucamonga, Riverside, Corona, San Bernie, Moreno Valley, and maybe Yucaipa. So what's there to do and see out there? Arts, historical buildings, neat museums, and easy hikes are all a plus.
posted by Mercaptan to Travel & Transportation around Los Angeles, CA (12 answers total) 4 users marked this as a favorite
hikes: mt. baldy area (north of Rancho Cucamonga)
arts: pomona artist district (in the city of Pomona), Montgomery Art Center at Pomona College (in Claremont), probably any other galleries at the five colleges there too.
posted by SeƱor Pantalones at 11:00 PM on December 20, 2006

The best that Riverside has is the Mission Inn area (with Mario's across the street). Right now there are 32 giant oranges downtown (self-link)
posted by growabrain at 11:01 PM on December 20, 2006

Another vote for Mission Inn (my wife and I were married in the Inn's Assisi chapel way back in 1975). Its all lit up for Christmas now and looks great. Be sure to tour the catacombs if that is still possible.

Would you like to see some bighorn sheep? This is the best time of the year to spot them in Lytle Creek's Southfork Canyon and Bonita Falls is near the bottom of the canyon. Middle Fork is also a great hike. To get to Lytle Creek, take the Sierra Ave offramp off the I-15. Be very careful in the mountains this time of year as the weather can turn ugly in a heartbeat and leave you in serious trouble if you're unprepared. And please, be aware of ice chutes. Ice chutes are scattered throughout the San Gabriel and San Bernardino Mountains.

San Bernardino County Museum in Redlands is a nice place to kill a few hours and is home to one of the largest egg collections in the world. The museum was originally located my hometown (Bloomington) and I had the pleasure of spending quite a bit of time with the man who amassed the collection when I was a youngster back in the very early 60s. The estancia in Redlands is another place to visit.

There are lots of beautiful Victorian homes to be seen in Redlands and Riverside if you have the time. The Graber Olive House in Ontario is also a nice stop if you'd like to pick up some great olives.

You may find the weather is a little more hiker friendly this time of year an hour east of Cucamonga in the Palm Springs area. If you venture that far out, be sure to see the Indian Canyons and Thousand Palms Oasis. Cabot's Pueblo Museum in Desert Hot Springs is also a must see if you make it out to Palm Springs.

For some good eatin' in Cucamonga, be sure to check out Vince's Spaghetti and the Sycamore Inn.

The area has a lot to offer and I hope you enjoy your visit. Though I now live out near Joshua Tree National Park, I grew up in the area where you're heading and am very familiar with it. If you'd like, I can drop you an email and answer any questions that you might have while you're out here.
posted by buggzzee23 at 12:04 AM on December 21, 2006

I forgot one more great place in the Palm Springs area: The Living Desert.
posted by buggzzee23 at 12:06 AM on December 21, 2006

third the mission inn (the nixons were married there). second graber olive house (look like green olives, taste more like black olives; weird).

if you are going as far as palm springs, there's the dinosaurs from pee wee's big adventure (now a creationist museum), casino morongo, cabazon outlet mall, and, if you go a bit farther, one of my favorite places on earth, joshua tree national park. calling any of these places eastern LA isn't so much a stretch of the imagination as much as an all out lie.

sorry i couldn't offer more. have fun!
posted by bryak at 5:41 AM on December 21, 2006

Don't forget Hadleys for one of their famous date shakes (or dry fruit).
posted by Taken Outtacontext at 9:25 AM on December 21, 2006

I'm from Corona! Since I fled they've built the Fender Museum, which appears to have a Johnny Cash exhibit right now. Might be worth a stopover.

If weather permits, Glen Ivy Hot Springs outside of Corona is wonderful. You pay one admission price and spend the day in various pools/hot tubs/saunas, sunbathing, and the best part, getting a mud bath.
posted by kmel at 9:40 AM on December 21, 2006

The California Museum of Photography is almost next door to the Mission Inn.
posted by buggzzee23 at 10:02 AM on December 21, 2006

Ha! I was just about to to recommend both Glen Ivy Hot Springs and the CA Museum of Photography, but I was beaten to the punch.
posted by scody at 10:36 AM on December 21, 2006

I second Vince's. It's my favorite childhood restaurant. Go for the cheap, delicious spaghetti, not the ambience. There is a location in Ontario too.

If you make it as far as Palm Springs, I recommend the Aerial Tramway and their art museum.

If you're looking for a relaxing place to wander and shop, visit The Village in Claremont. The shops are nice (look for Nick's Cafe, if it's still there, and go to Rhino Records for sure). But it's the surrounding area with the five Claremont colleges that makes it worthwhile. It's a lovely place to walk.
posted by faunafrailty at 11:14 AM on December 21, 2006

The NHRA Museum in Pomona and the Justice Brothers Museum in Duarte are fun if you're a gearhead.
posted by buggzzee23 at 12:15 PM on December 21, 2006

Also in Claremont is the Rancho Santa Ana Botanical Gardens. Free and very nice.
posted by jvilter at 6:49 PM on December 21, 2006

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