From the Hills to the Sign, the Los Angeles neighborhood of Hollywood has become synonymous with the entertainment industry—and, often, its glamorous appeal. People come from all over the world with hopes of a favorite-celebrity sighting in Tinseltown, or simply to revel in the area’s history and legacy. On the legendary star-studded Hollywood Walk of Fame, you can actually match your handprints and footprints to those of Hollywood stars, embedded in cement. Famous theaters include the grand Grauman’s Chinese Theatre—now the TCL Chinese Theatre—and the Egyptian and El Capitan, both of which are flamboyant icons from Hollywood’s glitzy past.
There are a variety of ways to see Hollywood, from open-air bus to trolley and bike tours. Most of the sights line up neatly along a 1-mile (1.6-kilometer) stretch of Hollywood Boulevard between La Brea Avenue and Vine Street. You can gaze upon many celebrity homes—from the exterior only—on sightseeing tours of the area, particularly in Beverly Hills and the Hollywood Hills. You can also combine a city tour with a visit to nearby theme parks including Universal Studios Hollywood or Disneyland in Anaheim. Full-day tours to Hollywood run from Los Angeles, Anaheim, and even Las Vegas.
Things to Know Before You Go
- Driving is the main way to get around Los Angeles. Be aware that traffic jams are common and can be epic, so be sure to plan sufficient time to travel between sights by car.
- It’s often sunny in LA, so bring sunglasses or other sun protection. Tote a light layer too, as temperatures can drop come evening.
- Private tours often include round-trip transportation from area hotels.
How to Get There
If you’re relying on public transportation to get around LA, central Hollywood is a convenient base. The Metro Red Line whisks you to Loz Feliz, downtown, and Universal Studios in minutes, and buses provide easy links east along Hollywood Boulevard. If you’re coming by car, you’ll find parking at Hollywood Boulevard and Vine Street.
When to Get There
Los Angeles is famous for its nearly year-round sunshine but receives the most visitors in summer.
Must-See Sights Around Hollywood
One of the can’t-miss attractions along Hollywood Boulevard, the Hollywood Museum is somewhat of a temple to the stars, crammed with kitsch, posters, costumes, and rotating props from classic films. Other museums worth a look include Ripley’s Believe Or Not!, the Guinness World Records Museum, and the Hollywood Wax Museum, while the Hollywood Bowl, Hollywood Roosevelt, and the Dolby Theatre are other highlights. At the famous intersection of Hollywood and Vine, you can see the Capitol Records Tower and the legendary Hollywood Sign that stands proudly over it all. Adjacent neighborhoods lure LA visitors to see the iconic Rodeo Drive, Sunset Strip, Santa Monica, and Venice Beach.