Los Angeles is a top commercial and entertainment hub in California. More than just being the home to the Hollywood film industry, LA boasts of many attractions beyond what the famous tourist sites can offer. This is not to say that these tourist destinations aren’t places worth checking out (because indeed, they are all splendid places). But if you’re seeking for something more local with a less tourist air than the famous tourist hot spots, LA also has many non-tourist sites to offer.
Mann Grauman’s Chinese Theater
Mann Grauman’s Chinese Theater has an awe-inspiring presence and history in Hollywood for more than 75 years. Simply known as the Chinese Theater to the locals, it is aptly located at the Hollywood Boulevard and is filled with much history around its famed walls. Declared a historic-cultural landmark in 1968, the Chinese Theater is rich in movie tradition, with its cement handprints and footprints on its forecourt.
It’s one of the most preferred locations for the industry’s most prestigious movie premieres. And it makes guests feel elite and welcome into the magical world of fantasy and whim known as Hollywood.
Prestige and sophistication radiate in the grand vicinity of the Kodak Theatre. It is the home of the Academy Awards Ceremonies and other important Hollywood events and prestigious productions. As a centerpiece of Hollywood and Highland Complex located in the heart of Hollywood, this most televised theater in America lets you experience red carpet elegance and celebrity glamour.
Six Flags Hurricane Harbor
Six Flags Hurricane Harbor is Los Angeles’ premier waterpark. It offers adventure thrills with diverse spots to suit your water fun and park preferences. It also features exciting rides, pools and cool dining areas that are great for family bonding activities.
It is home to the Six Flags Magic Mountain which features 17 pulse-pounding roller coasters and over 100 rides, games and attractions for the entire family. The Magic Mountain’s newest roller coaster is the fastest, tallest and longest flying coaster on earth. And the park has more roller coasters than any other park in the world.
Located in La Cienega, San Vicente and Beverly Boulevards at the edge of West Hollywood and Beverly Hills, the Beverly Center is a three-level fashion retail mall featuring a 13-cinema theater and rooftop patio which makes it a premier fashion destination in Los Angeles. From popular stores to luxe retailers, it features 160 distinctive specialty boutiques and restaurants reflecting the diverse styles and tastes of the city. Its entertainment lounges also boast of Sharp’s Full HD LCD TVs for visitors wanting to kick back, relax and enjoy the high definition programming.
Since 1935, the Griffith Observatory has been a major Los Angeles landmark. It is an icon of Los Angeles, a national leader in public astronomy, and is also a popular civic gathering place. Located on the southern slope of Mount Hollywood in Griffith Park, just above the Los Feliz neighborhood, this public observatory is 1,134 feet above sea level and is visible from many parts of the Los Angeles basin. Admission to the Observatory building and grounds is free. Shows at the planetarium needs only a nominal charge. And from its balconies, it commands a stunning view of the Los Angeles basin below, especially during evenings with clear skies and bright stars.
Los Angeles Zoo
Owned and operated by the City of Los Angeles, the Los Angeles Zoo is home to more than 1,100 mammals, birds, amphibians and reptiles representing hundreds of species of which 29 are already endangered. This 133 acres of property further nurtures wildlife with its diverse collection of gardens with over 800 plant species. It also features the Campo Gorilla Reserve, a new habitat to seven western lowland gorillas, and the Sea Life Cliffs, a replica of California’s rocky coast filled with harbor seals.
Museum of Tolerance
Established in 1993, the Museum of Tolerance (MOT) is the only museum of its kind in the world. It is an ordinary museum of artifacts and documents. It is a human rights laboratory and educational center dedicated to challenging visitors to understand the Holocaust in both historic and contemporary contexts. It provides interactive exhibits, special events, and customized programs for youths and adults. With such motivational mix of history, discovery and personal empowerment, the museum engages the hearts and minds, while challenging people with personal responsibility for positive change in the world.
Los Angeles Maritime Museum
Situated 20 miles south of the airport, the Los Angeles Maritime Museum features a park with monuments to the US Navy heavy cruiser Los Angeles and the American Merchant Marine Veterans Memorial. This maritime destination exhibits a history of commercial diving in Los Angeles Harbor and a Navy Hall with large ship models including the US Navy cruiser Los Angeles.
Museum of Contemporary Art
The Museum of Contemporary Art (MOCA) in Los Angeles is the only museum in the city devoted exclusively to contemporary art. It engages artists and audiences a diverse collection, presentation and interpretation of work produced since 1940. And in a remarkably short time, it has developed one of the nation’s most renowned permanent collections now counting for over 5,000 works. One of the best areas to explore here is the MOCA Grand Avenue which offers a fine sight of underground galleries.
Skirball Cultural Center
Skirball Cultural Center features an interesting museum, changing exhibitions, and artistic programs (music, theater, comedy, film, family, and literary projects). And it has its own version of Noah’s Ark, a permanent, award-winning children and family destination where kids can share and explore the timeless ancient flood story from the bible. It occupies an 8,000-square foot gallery at the Skirball. And it features rafters with whimsical animals fancifully handcrafted from cuddly companions to life-sized puppets.
“About Noah’s Ark,” Skirball.
“About the Zoo,” Los Angeles Zoo.
“Sky Information,” Griffith Observatory.
“Beverly Center Fact Sheet,” Beverly Center.
“All Rides,” Six Flags Hurricane Harbor.