Check out our Los Angeles 2 Day Itinerary for those in the city for just one weekend. If you’re looking to see all of the best sights in Los Angeles, consider booking a Los Angeles Tour with A Day in LA Tours!
If you’re only in Los Angeles for a weekend, it might seem impossible to fit all of the landmarks and activities that make L.A. so special into just two days. It’s tricky, but it’s definitely not impossible, especially if you take a Los Angeles Bus tour to see some of the famous sights.
Here’s a round-up of must-see destinations to consider when you’re building your Los Angeles 2 Day Itinerary:
Venice Beach is the 2nd largest tourist attraction in Southern California (after Disneyland) and for good reason: there is SO MUCH to see in this vibrant beach community. For those on a tight Los Angeles 2 day itinerary, you’ll want to for sure take a stroll down Ocean Front Walk to experience all the things that make Venice a place like no other: bodybuilders working out at Muscle Beach, skateboarders and graffiti artists doing their thing at the Venice Skate Park, artwork and unique souvenirs sold by sidewalk vendors, plus all sorts of street performances and other oddities to take in along the way.
A few blocks from the beach you can take a stroll around the famous Venice Canals neighborhood, or browse the shops, galleries, and restaurants along Abbot Kinney Boulevard.
One of L.A.’s most well-known landmarks and popular attractions is the Santa Monica Pier. The Santa Monica Pier is a staple in anyone’s Los Angeles 2 day itinerary. There’s no doubt you’ve seen it on TV or in movies, now see it for yourself. The giant Pacific Wheel rises more than 130 feet above the pier and offers riders a panoramic view of the Southern California coastline and Santa Monica Bay. On a clear day, you can even see the Hollywood Sign in the distance.
While you’re on the pier, take a photo in front of the Route 66 sign, which marks the end of the historic highway, or take a break from the sun and visit the Heal the Bay Aquarium under the pier which has over 100 local species on exhibit and hands-on activities for kids.
This L.A. neighborhood is known around the world as the embodiment of wealth, luxury, and glamour, and it’s not hard to see why. Everything about Beverly Hills oozes opulence: the sprawling estates and celebrity mansions, the high-end designer boutiques along Rodeo Drive, and the exclusive hotels and restaurants frequented by the rich and famous.
Luckily, for our Los Angeles 2 day itinerary, you don’t have to be a billionaire to visit, and window shopping is free. You can even stop by one of the sidewalk cafes for coffee or lunch sans réservation. Don’t forget to stop for a photo op in front of one of the Beverly Hills shield signs before you leave.
The legendary Sunset Strip has been Los Angeles’ mecca for rock stars, rebels, and revelers for over 100 years, from speakeasies during the roaring 1920’s, to the rise of rock n’ roll in the sixties and seventies, all the way up to present day. Playing the Strip is still considered a rite of passage for musicians.
For your Los Angeles 2 day itinerary, we recommend you cruise down the 1.5-mile stretch of Sunset Boulevard between Doheny Drive and North Crescent Heights Boulevard. During your drive, you’ll pass by some of the most iconic clubs and venues in the world like the Whisky a Go-Go, Roxy, Viper Room, and Rainbow Bar & Grill. You’ll also see the hotels where bands threw their infamously debaucherous after-parties: Sunset Tower Hotel, Sunset Marquis, and Chateau Marmont, to name a few.
No Los Angeles 2 day itinerary would be complete without a trip to Hollywood. The easiest way to check off all of the must-see Hollywood spots on your list is to start at the Hollywood and Highland Center at the intersection of Hollywood Boulevard and Highland Avenue. From here, you can take a stroll down the Hollywood Walk of Fame and find your favorite actor’s star, grab a photo op in front of the TCL Chinese Theater, see the hand and shoe imprints of Hollywood royalty in the sidewalk, and pass through the lobby of the Dolby Theatre, which has hosted the annual Academy Awards ceremony since 2002. There’s also an observation deck in the shopping center from which you can view the Hollywood Sign. Head towards the back of the courtyard and go up to level 3 for the best view.
If you’re ready for a break from the crowds and traffic, you’re in luck with our Los Angeles 2 day itinerary. With a multitude of parks, trails, and wilderness areas to explore in L.A., it’s easy to get away from the hustle and bustle and explore the natural Southern California landscape. As a bonus, you’ll get some exercise and catch some great views in the process.
Runyon Canyon is one of the most popular places to hike in Los Angeles, as it offers easy access from West Hollywood and great views of the city from the top of the trail. The 2.7-mile loop is a favorite among locals – don’t be surprised to see some famous faces on the trail with their pooches.
Griffith Park and Observatory is another local favorite, with multiple trails that range from leisurely nature walks to more challenging inclines. Even just taking a walk around the exterior of the observatory will lead you to the most picturesque views of L.A. and the Hollywood sign is in clear view from certain vantage points.
Short drive north on the Pacific Coast Highway from Santa Monica will take you to Topanga State Park, where you’ll find a variety of easy and moderate hiking trails. When you’re surrounded by the natural peace and beauty of the Santa Monica Mountains it would be easy to forget you’re anywhere near a city, until you round a corner and catch a glimpse of the skyline. Truly the best of both worlds.
Don’t worry – you won’t need to make room in your suitcase for backcountry hiking gear. All you need to navigate these well-groomed trails is your regular sneakers. (Just keep an eye out for the occasional rattlesnake basking in the midday sun.)
L.A. is a melting pot of different people and cultures, and nowhere is this diversity better represented than the city’s food scene. Whether you’re looking for a quick bite while sightseeing or you’re a foodie looking for a destination dining experience, there’s something for you in Los Angeles.
Pay a visit to Chinatown, Thai Town, or Little Ethiopia for authentic regional cuisine, or explore uniquely L.A. fusion foods like the popular Kogi Truck that birthed the Korean Mexican taco movement. Speaking of tacos, Los Angeles is just 130 miles north of Mexico and has its neighbors to the south to thank for the best tacos and Mexican cuisine you’ll find this side of the border.
The Original Farmers Market at the Grove is a historic L.A. landmark and a popular lunch destination. The Farmers Market opened in 1934 and today features more than 100 vendors including gourmet grocers, restaurants, and retail shops.
One of the Day in LA Tours check-in locations is also one of our favorite places to eat.
The Massilia Restaurant and Café in Santa Monica is open from 7 am to 11 pm daily, offering contemporary Italian, French & Moroccan dishes, plus happy hour cocktails.
And finally, for many visitors, no trip to the west coast is complete without a stop at In-N-Out Burger. Order your fries “Animal Style” and see what all the fuss is about.
A trip to Universal Studios will take up the better part of a day – which is a big commitment on a 2 day itinerary – but if you love movies and theme parks, it just might be worth it. Universal Studios is a unique hybrid: part working film studio, part theme park. In the past few years the park has been reimagined to include new attractions like The Wizarding World of Harry Potter and Kung Fu Panda: The Emperor’s Quest. The behind-the-scenes Studio Tour will take you real film sets, and on some days you’ll even see filming in action.
So, there you have it: Los Angeles in two days. If you’ve managed to see and do all of the things on your itinerary with time to spare, WELL DONE. All that’s left to do now is kick up your feet and reflect on all the good memories you’ll be taking home with you.
Written by Shauna Murray
Feeling inspired to see the best of LA? Book a Los Angeles tour with A Day in LA Tours today!