SoCal

Southern California vacation planning guides and itineraries. Best beaches in Orange County and Los Angeles, best things to do, and photos by Tom Bricker.

The Getty Villa Info, Tips & Review

The Getty Villa is an art museum in Malibu, California with antiquities from ancient Greeks, Romans, and Etruscans. Located a few miles from the Getty Center in Los Angeles, it’s a perfect counterpart to the main museum. This post reviews the Getty Villa, and offers my tips for visiting. (Updated April 23, 2021.) After being […]

Los Angeles & Southern California Itineraries

Our Los Angeles itineraries offer step-by-step 1-day plans for every area of the city, and we also have some itineraries for areas of Southern California outside L.A. These touring plans offer tips and strategy for the best things to do (and skip!), museums to visit, where to eat, and more. (Updated April 15, 2021.) Note […]

Griffith Observatory Review & Tips

Griffith Observatory is a planetarium & astronomy museum, and great free thing to do in Los Angeles, California. It’s also great for hikes with excellent panoramic views of the Hollywood Sign, Downtown L.A., and Pacific Ocean on clear days. This offers a review, photos, and tips for visiting Griffith Park, which is one of the […]

2021 Laguna Beach, California Planning Guide

Looking for a relaxing seaside vacation in Southern California? Laguna Beach is the perfect destination, and this planning guide will offer tips for visiting, things to do, places to eat, hotel recommendations, and more that you need to know before your trip to Laguna Beach. (Updated March 17, 2021.) Let’s start with the latest developments […]

Ultimate 2021 Los Angeles City Guide

Our 2021 Los Angeles, California planning guide offers visit tips, including top things to do, best places to eat in L.A., hotel advice, and how to transportation hacks for SoCal’s notorious traffic. LA is one of our favorite cities in the world, and we’ll help you experience the touristy highlights and hidden gems. (Updated March […]

Los Angeles & Orange Counties Resume Reopening

There’s good news for Southern California! Thanks to plummeting cases and positivity rates coupled with soaring vaccination numbers, both Los Angeles and Orange Counties have re-entered the red tier of the state’s Blueprint for a Safer Economy on March 15, 2021. California’s system for reopening is a four-tier, color coded classification that was introduced last […]

10 Best Beaches in Laguna Beach, California

Laguna Beach has the best beaches, oceanfront, and public parks in Southern California. In fact, its miles of coast along Pacific Coast Highway might be some of the best in the world. This list ranks the top 10 beaches–plus whether they’re currently open or closed. (Updated March 15, 2021.) While this quiet little beach town […]

The Getty Center Museum Info, Review & Tips

The Getty Center is a free museum in Los Angeles, and one of the top attractions in California, offering beautiful art, architecture, and gardens–plus stunning skyline views. This post offers our review, photos, and tips for making the most of your visit. (Updated March 15, 2021.) After being closed since last year, the Getty Center […]

Tips for Hiking to the Hollywood Sign

You can hike to the Hollywood Sign via a few different trails in Los Angeles, including Griffith Observatory. This post offers our recommendations for the shortest route, easiest & best paths, what to avoid, and other tips for hiking to the Hollywood Sign. (Updated March 14, 2021.) More accurately, this is how to hike to […]

The Last Bookstore: Reading is Cool in Los Angeles

The Last Bookstore is an iconic location in Downtown Los Angeles, transcending its place as California’s largest seller of new, used, and rare books into a quasi art installation. It’s also a cultural touchstone connecting the Age of Literacy to the Post-Information Age. This post share photos from inside, info and tips for visiting, and […]