Every single day, people come from all over the world to Los Angeles. If you are just coming for a visit, L.A. can be a tough nut to crack when it comes to knowing what to do beyond the typical tourist destinations (Disneyland, Universal Studios, Hollywood Walk Of Fame, etc.). We are here to give you a bit of a different perspective, so here are a few things to try out if you don’t want to go to same spots as all the tourists.
First off, you are going to get hungry. It happens to all of us. If you are on a budget, you don’t need to stick to just boring fast food restaurants in L.A. Los Angeles is a food city and no single food item is more ubiquitous here than tacos. There are tacos everywhere here, from taco trucks on seemingly every corner to hip fusion spots that can go beyond the traditional by incorporating the melting pot that is the area and adding things like kimchi (a pickled Korean spicy cabbage). If you wind up in Los Angeles on a Tuesday, you can find tacos all over the city for a dollar each. If I were pressed to come up with just one place that illustrates some of the best tacos that the area has to offer I would start with Guisados. The tacos here are packed with addictive stewed meats and vegetables, served in corn tortillas that are made to order. They are unforgettable. Everything here is delicious so, thankfully, if you have a hard time deciding what to get, there is a sampler plate of six mini tacos for under ten dollars.
Los Angeles is arguably the film capital of the world, so it stands to reason that you will want to see a movie while you are here. Sure, you could just go see the latest blockbuster at the big megaplex and blow through your vacation money on the overpriced snacks or you can shoot for something more memorable. World-famous director/auteur Quentin Tarantino owns a theater called The New Beverly that still shows their movies on actual 35mm film (many from Quentin’s own private collection). Usually, they aren’t first-run flicks but instead lovingly curated double-features of anything from French crime capers to kung-fu spectacles. Along with the movies, there are vintage trailers, old-timey commercials–all for eight bucks. What’s more, the snacks are super-cheap too (I highly recommend the frozen Junior Mints).
Los Angeles is a hub for art and has so much more to offer than just The Getty. While there are way too many options to list here, one highlight that deserves your attention is The Broad. Opened in 2015, The Broad is named after philanthropist Eli Broad and the permanent collection primarily stems from his own collection of art. It is a gloriously contemporary art museum that is open for free to the public, but reservations are highly encouraged. It is worth noting though, that if you are deciding to visit on a whim, showing up an hour before it opens ups the chances of you getting in without a reservation.
Should you not be able to get into The Broad, a much more casual art gallery (but no less influential) is located way in the back of the Wacko Soap Plant on Hollywood Boulevard and is known as La Luz De Jesus. It is considered the epicenter of lowbrow art (think black velvet paintings, those big eye portraits, and so forth) and many careers have launched from first exhibitions here.