9 Less Touristy Places to Visit in Los Angeles

This quarter I kept a running list of fun or eventful things I did or places I went around Westwood, Los Angeles, and California as a whole during my fall quarter at UCLA. Student life is hectic, but I still found time to experience some of these less touristy gems that were close to home.

James Corden taping

I got these tickets for free to go to the CBS Studios near The Grove shopping center. You can’t film inside but it was a quick experience that only took a couple hours to sit in the audience and laugh at James Corden’s comedy show.

College Fashion Week

Her Campus finally brought College Fashion Week to Los Angeles this year, so we got to see college students model clothing and we interacted with the sponsors of the event n Culver City. It had a very warehouse vibe and made for a special night (my first time seeing a runway show!).

The Getty Villa and Getty Center 

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These two museums are both grand and house insane collections of artwork but have very different atmospheres. The Getty Center overlooks the city of LA on a bluff and has amazing views of the skyline and the whole spread out City of Angels. Go on a clear day and bring a good camera. The Getty Villa is itself a work of art, shaped like an Italian palace with an amphitheater and several gardens. It has pillars and impressive architecture.

Football at the Rose Bowl

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Naturally as a UCLA student I have the den pass to go to all the football games at the Rose Bowl in Pasadena. It’s a great experience to come and support the Bruins.

PINZ Bowling Center in the Valley

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I went to PINZ for a club bonding event and it was fun to just relax. Who says you have to come to LA and just go to the Hollywood sign? Go to the Valley and live the “Clueless” life (apparently we drove by some liquor store in the film).

Road trip to the Sierra Nevada Mountains

I went up to Mono Lake near Yosemite for a field trip for my environment class and we got to see where Los Angeles gets its water from. There was beautiful scenery of the mountains and lakes as we traced the SoCal drought all the way up California. I really recommend going and learning about the draining of Mono Lake and its environmental effects – if not for the serene escape.

The Nuart Theatre

This theater has Rocky Horror nights at midnight on Saturdays and it’s really a must-see once in your time in Los Angeles. People wear costumes, people sing along, they scream at you if you fall asleep and they write on your foreheads in lipstick if it’s your first time. Just do it once, even if you’ve never seen “The Rocky Horror Picture Show” before.

The Contenders Series

The Hammer Museum in Westwood hosted an event called the Contenders Series, and I went to see the film “Arrival” and then a Q&A with Amy Adams and the director afterwards. It was a great experience to not only watch the film (I loved it, cinematically) and hear about females in science fiction from Amy Adams. I recommend Hammer Museum programming, but just check their hours because they seem to close early some days.

The UCLA campus!

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You can’t go wrong taking a stroll though the finest university since 1919.

And while we’re counting, I also got to see Andy Grammer, Ty Dolla $ign and Brad Paisley in concert during fall quarter. Oh LA, I love you.

If you don’t necessarily want to stop anywhere but just “see” Los Angeles, my favorite region to drive along or off is the Sunset Strip, cruising past comedy clubs or venturing into Beverly Hills until you hit Hollywood. You can take either Sunset or Wilshire to witness the exciting aura Los Angeles has to offer.

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