The first stop on our American adventure was that funny old place from the movies we know as Los Angeles. We spent three nights there, basing ourselves at the colourful Venice Beach. We arrived early on a Sunday and spent a gruelling few hours waiting for our hotel room to be available. Five very grumpy, very tired young adults took themselves for a walk down to the beach to kill some time. Being so early, the place was a ghost town (apart from a large homeless community) and at that stage all we really wanted was a bed and a shower. We decided the hotel courtyard was a more appropriate place to be a zombie at that point in time. Lucky it was a cute courtyard. We stayed at The Inn at Venice Beach and I would definitely recommend it.
We finally checked in and showered and before long all three of our male companions were asleep (it was about 2pm). My sister and I decided to man up and take ourselves for a walk and I'm so glad we did! We walked down to Abbott Kinney Boulevard which is a trendy street lined with boutique shops and cafes. After exiting one shop we saw someone we recognised. We looked at the woman, then at each other, then at the woman again. It was Anna Paquin (Sookie Stackhouse from True Blood etc). Very exciting! We had a nice stroll and a good proper coffee from Intellegentsia (go there if you're ever in the area and in need of proper coffee!). We also visited the nearby Venice Canals (below). The day we arrived was Cinco de Mayo and we happened to be staying next to a mexican restaurant/bar. They had a huuuge party with loud music all day and night. Unfortunately we were too tired to join in the festivities; in fact we slept soundly despite the live music blaring until late. I kinda wish we had have joined in, but 14 hour flights do funny things to you.
The next day we hired a car and I was tasked with the job of chief driver as I was the only one who had driven in the US before. Driving in LA is at a whole new level of crazy! As an Aussie you have to concentrate extra hard on driving on the right (or wrong) side while also tackling the seven lane freeways and insane amounts of traffic. It's surprisingly fun. We drove to Beverley Hills and did a bit of shopping before heading up the Hollywood Hills to see the sign. Back down we went and had a bit of a wander through the Walk of Fame and then back closer to 'home' to Santa Monica Beach and dinner at Venice.
My siblings and I spent our last day in LA at Disneyland! None of us had been before so we were pretty excited. In hindsight I would have gone to California Adventure World instead (more rides) but it was still a lot of fun. We went on a few rides, including the teacups (picture of my sister and I above) and stayed to watch the parade at the end of the day which was super cool and a fun way to end our short trip to LA.
To be honest I'm not sure if I would plan another visit to Los Angeles, unless it was a short stop over. This was my second visit and I feel like I've pretty much seen all there is now. It's definitely worth a visit though and you can't help but feel that Hollywood excitement, turning every corner and wondering if you've just seen a movie star. Lucky for me I did :) Next stop - San Francisco!
Photos taken on both my iphone and camera and a few stolen from my dear brother.