One of the nice things about moving to a new city is that you can be a tourist at first. So once I got settled, I figured I’d get to know my new hometown so I could start to fit in a little better (or at least fake it for my East Coast friends when they come visit). Oh sure, I saw the Hollywood sign and the Walk of Fame and the La Brea Tar Pits, but there’s also a bunch of other stuff to visit. So here are a few places this LA newbie can recommend.
This place has been around since 1935 and sits on the southern slope of Mount Hollywood; the view of LA below is second-to-none. It’s THE place to see stars, and I don’t mean the ones that end up in the tabloids.
Okay okay, I know if you’re reading this blog you’re familiar with this ballpark, but I have to put in a plug–did you know we have tours? The friendly guides will take you through restricted areas for a behind-the-scenes look at one of the game’s most notable stadiums. Come over and say hi if I’m around while you’re here.
The Original Farmers Market
Sample cuisine from all over the world, take home an international souvenir or two, and hang around for the special events that always seem to be taking place.
And then there’s the food; you could eat every meal there for a week and never have the same dish twice. But you won’t find much stuff like the pretzel or Italian ice stands I’m used to frequenting back in NYC. Squid salad? Uh, no thanks, pal.
LA County Arboretum/Botanical Garden
Remember “Fantasy Island”? Who doesn’t, right? You’ll see the Queen Anne Mansion from the series at this urban oasis. And in general, it’s a pretty place to visit. That’s all I’ve got for this one–I’m more of a city fella.
Skeletons in the Closet
The LA County Coroner’s office has a gift shop (no, I’m not kidding). You can buy coroner-themed t-shirts, mugs, corpse-shaped Post-It notes and even toe-tag key chains. I filed this under “I just don’t get it,” but that didn’t stop me from buying a chalk-outlined mousepad for my office.
I guess if there’s a lesson to be learned here, it’s that it’s never too early–or too late–to get to know your town. I mean, I lived in New York forever, and now that I live across the country, I wish I would’ve gone sightseeing a little more often. Well, there’s always the away games against the Mets. Think I’ll start with the Statue of Liberty.
See more of Joe’s L.A. adventures at www.torrestories.com