Almost all people living in Los Angeles would tell you that LA is not tourist friendly for lack of efficient transport system. Add the fact that the city is one sprawling metropolitan hub. That is why, having a car is must. Though that may be true, it is still possible to visit and experience Los Angeles without an automobile, you just have to know where to go. One place in LA that is full of tourist attractions that do not necessarily needs car is the Downtown Los Angeles.
Downtown Los Angeles is the business district of Los Angeles and home to some of the world- renowned galleries and museums. If you want to see a diverse neighborhood, then, this is the right place to go. During office hours, the district is bustling with people minding their own business and establishments ready to serve. During non-working holidays, it is a quiet, free of traffic business hub.
During our visit in Los Angeles, one day was spent touring around downtown and admiring Los Angeles in all its glamour and sophistication. Locals would tell us that there was a time when people used to avoid downtown, but, after its rejuvenation, people were starting to flock and tourists began to come. That is why, if you are going to Los Angeles, make sure that you allot one day touring DTLA. Here’s our sample of tour you can do by walking.
1. Civic Center/Grand Park Station
Start your tour by taking the Metro (Red or Purple Line) anywhere near you to Metro Civic Center/Grand Park station. Exit the station and you will be right in the middle of Grand Park LA.
2. Los Angeles City Hall
Facing south, you will see the very recognizable Los Angeles City Hall building. The city hall of Los Angeles is one of the most beautiful and modern city halls in the world. Go inside through the public entrance and after checking in at the security desk head to the lift to bring you to 26th floor, Tom Bradley Room and take the stairs to the 27th for the Observation Deck. This is the reason why you are going to the city hall. There is an amazing view of the downtown.
3. Cathedral of our Lady of the Angels
From the city hall, go back towards the Grand Park to the Cathedral of our Lady of the Angels. The cathedral is possibly the biggest cathedral that I’ve seen. Inside the cathedral is a little museum of things and memorabilia of Pope John Paul II and of Mother Theresa. The ceiling is high and the corridors are definitely modern and well maintained.
4. Walt Disney Concert Hall
The stylistic architecture of the Concert Hall is designed by renowned Architect Frank
Gehry. The building is shouting elegance and an important place of arts. This concert hall that seats over 2000 people is the home of the incredible Los Angeles Philharmonic orchestra.
5. The Broad
Just across the street of Walt Disney Concert Hall on the 1st and S Grand Avenue is a popular museum, The Broad. The Broad is a modern art museum that houses almost 2000-piece of contemporary art. With no admission fee, every visitor is free to admire and be amazed by a collection of arts. It was amazing outside and captivating inside.
6. The Museum of Contemporary Art (MOCA)
We are over half of this walking tour and before filling our stomachs with food, we have one last stop. Another museum just two blocks across the street from the Broad museum is MOCA. MOCA or The Museum of Contemporary Art is a collection of, as the name implies, contemporary arts. Lover of arts will surely enjoy the exhibition of American and European Art Collection.
7. Grand Central Market
Less than 10-min walk from MOCA on the W 3rd and Hill St is the Grand Central Market. After the tour and after feasting your eyes on arts and museums, it’s time to feast on food. Grand Central Market has started in 1917, now a hundred-year old, and home of local Los Angeles cuisines. There are lots of food choices that will surely satisfy your hunger. There is no better place to try local cuisines than to try it at Grand Central Market.
8. Pershing Square
After a rich and satisfying tour, you can end it at Pershing Square. Pershing Square is a public park and is near from local stores. If you are a lover of vinyl records or books, like me, The Last Bookstore is just on the 5th. Once you’re done for the day, Metro station is located nearby to bring you to your next Los Angeles destination.
*Bradbury Building near the Grand Central Market is also a neat place to see if time allows.
*Same with Angel of flight on S Hill Street.
*You can also end the tour by taking an uber to Staples Center. Sports fans will surely not gonna miss this.
*Opposite Staples Center is the Microsoft Building and there’s a slew bars and restaurant, good to cap the night.
*Note that it is important to check the operating hours of each establishments.
After touring the downtown, you can surmise that you’ve gotten to know Los Angeles a little better. One day spent here is definitely not wasted.