Los Angeles, the home of the rich and famous, also known as the last stop of mine and Vicky’s trip. Cue endless visits to the beaches that surround the city, and the last few days of relaxation before heading back to work (in Vicky’s case) and another friend came for a visit (me, do I actually do anything?! Kidding, I do.).
So picture, this fresh out of Vegas and The Grand Canyon, we’re thinking ‘awesome, about three and a half hours to L.A. – we’ll get there, hit the beach, life will be grrreat‘. In reality, we ran into every bit of traffic humanly possible and didn’t even arrive in L.A. (well, Long Beach was cheaper, so that’s where we stayed) until about 4pm. We left at 10am, just to put that into perspective… However, all that being said, we did hit the beach pretty quickly. Long Beach was a short 5 minute drive from our hotel, so we spent a few hours chilling out there as the sun went down. Then we went back to our hotel and watched all three High School Musicals on Disney Channel (no shame whatsoever).
Our plan for the L.A. area was pretty simple: just chill on the beaches, make the most of our final few days. And that’s exactly what we did. We had three full days and two half days (one of those might as well have been a full day, as our flight back to Boston wasn’t until 11pm..), and the full days were spent at the beach, even when it was cloudy (they teach us how to deal with that kind of stuff in the UK, you know..). The beaches we spent the day at were Santa Monica, Manhattan Beach and Venice Beach. Unfortunately for us, the weather was grey and cold while we were at Manhattan beach, but that didn’t deter us and we made the most of the day, reading our books and watching the surfers tackle the pretty hefty waves. A personal favorite for me was actually Santa Monica and I’m hoping to get back at some point over the next few years (?). Oh, and there was an epic bakery in Manhattan Beach where I managed to find gluten-free cupcakes and everything, good times. Also, be sure to check out all the street art that Venice (not just Venice Beach, go a little further into the town) has to offer: there’s some great stuff!
Our final half day (read, more like a full day) was spent having a little drive through Beverly Hills (read being nosey and seeing how the other half live..) and at The Grove L.A., a swish outdoor shopping mall. They boast a variety of shops, including a Sephora (where I bought a Becca highlighter that I have been lusting over forever), PacSun, Zara, and more. They also are the proud owners of multiple restaurants most notably (in my humble opinion), The Cheesecake Factory, where I can indulge my poor, gluten-allergy ridden self in some GF CHEESECAKE. Heck yes.