What is the best location to base yourself?

By Traveller March 2, 2017
Los Angeles

What is the best location to base yourself?

(11 answers)
By Jo Traveller March 2, 2017

Staying in LA for 6 days in 2 weeks. Looking for advice on best location to stay. Couple in 30's/40's, would like to do some tourist activities, walk to nice cafes restaurants, etc. so far am tossing up between Downtown and WeHo?? Thank you.

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11 answers

Strongly suggest you look at what activities and attractions you plan for your trip and then consider staying close to where the majority of those are, with the option of being near a Metro station so you can take the train. The Red line runs between Hollywood and Downtown, and there is a bus from Hollywood to WeHo so you could very easily maneuver that part of your trip. While a car rental is easy in L.A, finding parking can be a pain. Not only are spots hard to find, many are permit only and most will require some parking fee, either metered or flat fee fora garage. And if you do miraculously find a spa, there is a good chance its a 1 or 2-hour zone or there are street cleaning days and you car could get towed. Better option is to get Lyft to wherever, saves the hassle of parking and the fees involved. L.A is a pretty vast area and has many smaller cities in itself (Culver City, Santa Monica, Venice, etc.). Most attractions are pretty huge too so give yourself ample time for travel and for your visit.
Hi Ruksana, how are you? I've been to L.A on 2014 and had a car rented. I'm going back to L.A on april and I'm thinking of not renting a car to save money. Some brazilians has told me i'm crazy because it's impossible to be in your city without a car. As you mentioned the subway station, i got very interested to know a little more about this transportation option. Is it very usefull for a tourist who wants to go to most popular spots in LA and also to places like Santa Mônica, Venice Beach and Beverly Hills? What are the opening hours? using bus is simple as well? Thank you very very very much in advance!
Hi Karina! If you have no issues renting a car and are careful about parking/don't mind paying for parking at most places, then that is your best option for L.A so, your friends are not joking about needing a car. But, if you have the time and want to be careful about spending then public transport - the metro and buses - can be pretty effective if you plan your day right to do a bunch of things in one area. It is all connected so you will probably find a good way to get to places easily. Here is the link - https://www.metro.net/riding/maps/- You will have to buy a TAP card and reload it for your trips but there are kiosks at every metro station where you can do that easily, and if you have trouble just ask somebody, people are helpful here even if they look like they are always in a hurry. One way trip is $1.75. You can also do part of your travels by public transportation and part of it using Lyft , Uber or any of the carpooling services, sometimes that is much cheaper than the parking you will be paying at most places. I know Santa Monica and Venice Beach are connected by metro but I don't think Beverly Hills is. Check online for trains and bus times, I don't want to misguide you there :) The buses are easy to use and drivers are helpful. Hope that helps!
I enjoy Downtown LA more so than WEHO and I am in my early 30's. I feel like i enjoyed WEHO more when I was younger because there are a lot of fancy bars and night clubs. I feel like Downtown LA is a little more calm. They have the Arts District, Little Tokyo and a lot of great eateries if you wander around Downtown LA. Maybe stay half in WEHO and 1/2 in Downtown LA? Downtown LA is more chill. I feel like WEHO is not reality.
Local September 17, 2018
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I suggest Santa Monica. It has a great promenade to walk and is a fun town full of great restuarants like Tar and Roses!
Local March 4, 2017
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Also- I don't drive sooo as far as getting around metro buses and also metro bikes let's thou rent/pick up a bulge in one location and drop it off at another station. Also COMEDY CLUBS. Largo, Improv...
Local March 2, 2017
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My opinion is to stay in the Beverly Grove area. Beverly and 3rd Street between Fairfax and La Brea is very walkable, and it puts you close to both downtown and the beach.
Local March 2, 2017
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My suggestion is to stay near a Red Line station. The Red Line subway takes you to most of the touristy areas, including Hollywood and Universal Studios. If you're considering Downtown, I'd suggest near the 7th Street/Civic Center station because then you're near not only a Red Line station, but also the Expo Line, which can take you to the Santa Monica Pier.
I don't recommend having a car in L.A. unless there's a specific need (like Disneyland).
If what you really want is to walk to cute cafes, while there are cafes everywhere, you'll find a greater density of them in Los Feliz and Silverlake. If you want my favorite cafe, that's in East Hollywood and it's called Club Red Dragon.
WeHo is definitely the right area. Somewhere along Fairfax between 3rd and Sunset for instance (The Old farmer's Market and The grove, the LACMA are there). But LA is made of many "Villages", So be prepared to drive or ride and go North ( i.e.Los Feliz and the Observatory) East (Downtown LA - "The last bookstore" and the ACE cafe) South ( i.e. Hermosa Beach and Palos Verdes for the Mediterranean feel) West ( Santa Monica Third Street promenade and the piers of SM and Malibu)...just to name a few hot spots, but LA specially if you are willing to drive has a lot more to offer...sometime just a few blocks on a street ( York st. in Eagle Rock off of the 110 south) or 2nd st in Belmont Shore East of Long beach, the Port o' call restaurants overlooking the harbor in San Pedro and the old Warehouse converted into an artsy exhibits with many original vendors...It's called "Crafted at the Port of LA") I got to go now! If you are into riding Motorcycles, let me know and I will be happy to tell you where to rent one, to be your guide and to show you around. Enjoy your vacations:-)
Bruno Rony
LosAngeles Bikers
Local March 2, 2017
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I live in WeHo so I'm biased, but Downtown is also a great location as far as walking to cafes and restaurants. From WeHo, Hollywood Blvd. which is covered with those infamous stars is only 2 and half miles. Mann's theatre is on Hollywood as well. Pantages also on Hollywood hosts a number of musicals you may be interested in. Food you can walk to is amazing and in abundance in WeHo.
Local March 2, 2017
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WeHo would be much better. It's just a pain to get to and from Downtown. Also look into Santa Monica and Culver City for places to stay if you'd like! :)
Local March 2, 2017
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That is an almost impossible question to answer. LA is not like New York. We are more of a car city. We hop in the car and zip from place to place. There is no "IT" place to be. All the places you named have their charm. Downtown is now a new urban, hip place to live, but personally it wouldn't be my choice to stay. WeHo is the gay capital of the world and a fun and lively place to be, but you won't want to stay in that area for a whole week. Santa Monica or Venice has that great beach vibe etc etc. I would choose a place like Mid-City, because you can easily drive or Uber/Lyft (even better) to the so many fantastic places in the city that you want to see. In Mid-City you are 20 minutes from everywhere - downtown or the beach, Hollywood and the airport. Enjoy your stay!
Local March 2, 2017
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I stayed at The Cadillac Hotel, which sits on the edge of Venice and Santa Monica beaches. It's near Main Street and Abbott Kinney and a close ride to lots of coastal activities. It's also very affordable.
Traveller March 2, 2017
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