Hello everyone!! Today I wanted to recap my recent (short but sweet) weekend trip to California. I visited many places in the short time I was there including Los Angeles, Malibu, Venice, Beverly Hills and Hollywood. First I'll be showing you the photos I took while on the trip, so scroll down to the very bottom for the full recap!
(Photo below) At the Birmingham airport about to board my flight to LAX!
This photo was taken at Venice Beach. Venice is the coolest beach town known for its free-spirited, bohemian vibes. Here you will find many colorful murals, funky shops and pretty entertaining street performers.
We ended our first day at the Santa Monica Pier. Walking the beaches at sunset and admiring the hustle and bustle of the amusement park, located on the pier above, that looks directly out into the pacific ocean.
The photo below was taken in Beverly Hills on the second day of the trip. We stopped in a neighborhood with lots of palms on the way to Rodeo Drive. California arguably has the best shopping in the United States! I mean just walk down Rodeo Drive for yourself and you'll see what I mean!!
Later in the day we went to see the Hollywood Sign. There's always the option to hike up to the sign but we made an executive decision to drive up into Hollywood Hills instead (ha)! Also yes, there's always time for an outfit change... Welcome to the life of a blogger.
Before heading back home we had to make a pit stop at a local In-N-Out! I was determined to see if it was worth all the hype and let me tell you, it totally was. Currently craving the animal fries!
Okay, now for a full review of my trip to California :)
WHERE TO STAY:
Obviously I stayed with my best friend while in California, but I had her recommend a few local hotels (in great locations) that would each make a great place to stay. If you're not about that hotel life, Airbnb is always an option that I love to use when traveling. Hotel recommendations: Chateau Marmont, Beverly Hills Hotel, Standard Weho, Standard DTLA, Ace Hotel, The Nomad, Hotel Irwin.
WHERE TO EAT/DRINK:
The Ivy: (Los Angeles) Upscale dining in the most gorgeous setting. The food was incredible and the restaurant itself was so stylish. The decor was super colorful and fun! An upscale Los Angeles staple, The Ivy is a must if you ever find yourself in the area.
Malibu Farms Pier Cafe: (Malibu Beach) If you're in Malibu this is the place to go. We ate brunch and sipped on cocktails while enjoying the most amazing view of the ocean.
Great White: (Venice) We stopped here for coffee while in Venice but the food looked incredible. Super trendy place!
Salt and Straw: (Multiple Locations) OH MY GOSH. I'm embarrassed to admit that we came back here three times during our trip. We would have honestly gone more but there was always a line. I can close my eyes and still taste the Lavender Honey ice cream... No words.
Mama Shelter: (Los Angeles) We went here for brunch and I absolutely loved it! Has an incredible rooftop view of Los Angeles. Colorful/fun decor- Excellent staff and customer service. We left here very full and happy!
The Standard: (Downtown LA) Rooftop bar that is a great spot for happy hour. My favorite part was that they had water beds that you could lounge on. They were so much fun! Lots of laughs and memories made here with my girls.
The City Market: (Downtown LA) We actually were going to go here but didn't end up having enough time. But my friend is a local and told me that it's the perfect place to shop and grab a bite to eat while downtown.
In-N-Out: (Multiple Locations) I mean, did you even go to California if you didn't have In-N-Out?! It's literally just a fast food burger joint but it's all the rage and I was excited to go here, especially since we don't have one in the South. It really did live up to the hype, the animal fries were INCREDIBLE!
WHAT TO DO:
Venice Beach Boardwalk: This area is buzzing! Tons of food stands and funky shops. Lots to see including street performers, skateboarders and people playing basketball. Not to mention the gorgeous beach! I could have spent an entire day here without getting bored.
The Venice Canals: (Venice) Amazing man-made canals enclosed by colorful, unique houses. One of my favorite spots during the trip. Gorgeous spot for photos!
Abbot Kinney Blvd (Venice): Great street for shopping and dining!
Shopping on Rodeo Drive: (Beverly Hills) Warning: You won't leave empty handed. Some of the best shopping you will ever experience. Even if you're not a big shopper, this famous shopping street is still worth seeing.
Drive through Beverly Hills: One of my favorite things to do was drive through the upscale neighborhoods of Beverly Hills. Here you will find the most stunning homes and extremely unique architecture at every corner!
Dodger Stadium / Lakers Game: If you're a sports fan, this is a must. If you can't attend a game, the stadium/arena are still worth seeing.
Santa Monica Pier: Very crowded but is another super popular destination to visit while in California. The concept of an amusement park on a beach overlooking the water is extremely ideal.
Hollywood Sign: Super touristy but definitely worth it. You have the option to hike to the sign or to drive up into Hollywood hills to see it. I noticed a lot of people having picnics and playing in the park below while enjoying the incredible views.
Malibu Beach: Grab your beach gear and head on over to Malibu. Here you can enjoy the gorgeous beaches, watch the surfers and grab a bite at Malibu Farms cafe! There are also a few super cute shops located on the pier.