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Best Things to Do in Downtown LA

By Nigilesh - September 6, 2020
Things to do in Downtown LA

DTLA is one of the most sought after tourist destination in California. Downtown Los Angeles has an intense urban aura that no other city can offer. The city of Los Angeles, overlapping with others, is split into suburbs and districts. Most of these districts have been named after events that are currently or in the past focused in the districts e.g. the Arts, Civic Center, Fashion, Banking and Theater. In this article, we take a look at the best things to do in Downtown LA.

This transition occurred in 1999 when an adaptive reuse plan was adopted and was approved by the city. Which then enabled the historic Art Deco and Beaux-Arts buildings in the area to be reinvigorated into trendy homes and commercial areas. The city is considered as the hub of the urban rail transit system. This also plays a vital role in Metrolink commuter rail system for Southern California.  

Top things to do in Downtown LA

  • OUE Skyspace
  • Olvera Street
  • The Last Bookstore
  • Walt Disney Concert Hall
  • Little Tokyo

1. OUE Skyspace

Most big towns have a skyscraper observation tower, Los Angeles is no exception for that. In the emblematic US Bank Tower, tourists enjoy brilliant panoramic views of LA at almost 1,000 feet (304.8 metres) above ground. The highlight of the attraction is the glass slide that takes you from 70th level to the 69th floor, all in the glass. It’s just an event for three seconds, but you can’t beat the feeling. This is one of the best things to do in Downtown LA.

OUE Skyspace
Source: Unsplash

The construction of the observation deck on the 69th and the 70th floor of this skyscraper were put forth by OUE Ltd, the owners of this massive structure. The observation deck was named as OUE skyspace. In addition to this, there is also a restaurant on the 71st floor named 71Above. The remodelling of the floors for tourist visit was about 31 million dollars and the place was opened for tourists on the month of June 2016.

Also read: Exciting Things To Do in Los Angeles at Night

2. Olvera Street

Olvera Street is situated just to the north of Union Station, which can be accessed with the help of Metro. Think of LA, you’ll start picturising the skyscrapers and the busy city with all the usual hustles. Strolling this colourful street in Downtown LA is one of the best things to do to escape city life. This is considered as the birthplace of Los Angeles. It is a market place, in general, and the streets are dotted with shops where the authentic Mexican candy can be experienced.

Olvera Street
Source: Unsplash

Olvera Street is one of the most visited attractions in Downtown LA, attracting people from all over the world. It will be easy to see and feel when you step onto Olvera Street why so many people are flocking to see it. There is certainly a unique atmosphere on Olvera street. Most days of the week you can take a free tour to understand the history of this exceptional downtown district or walk and enjoy. This is a great place to purchase souvenirs too.

Also read: Best Beaches in Los Angeles

3. The Last Bookstore

This is not the usual bookstore that one would come across on the streets every day while going to work. This ancient banking building which has been transformed into a two-story library with crazy quantities of books but many interesting items to see too. In addition to the enormous collection of books, the place also has art studios and exhibits, thematic artworks are located around. This is one of the peaceful things to do in Downtown LA.

Source: Unsplash

You also get to see the books being arranged in Tunnels based on Genre. The crime and horror collection on the 2nd floor is one of the famous Tunnel of Books like that. This exclusive store has over 100,000 old and antique books, some for just USD 1 each. For the future of reading, it is a small amount. This bookstore keeps you covered irrespective of whichever genre you are into.

4. Walt Disney Concert Hall

In 2003, Disney Hall opened with a huge hype as the crown jewel of the Music Centre. This is also one of the most remarkable structures to have ever been built in Los Angeles. After the famous halls in LA, with the likes of Ahmanson Theatre, The Mark Taper Forum, this stands fourth in the list of halls to comprise the Los Angeles Music Centre.

It’s not always about the music, the massive structure is a true attention grabber even from outside, because of its curvy design and the steel face. The whole idea was to give the best possible experience for the listeners. Hence the structure was designed without pillar like the usual halls. In fact, people claim that the shape of the building also adds to the listening experience. This is one of the best things to do in Downtown LA if you are a music lover.

Also read: Top shopping venues spotted – Shop till you drop at Los Angeles, USA

5. Little Tokyo

Much like most famous cities with historic cities around the world have a historic district with a totally contrasting culture in it. Downtown has a fair share of this uniqueness with three cities with ethnic Japanese population. Little Tokyo is one such district in Downtown LA and is also the largest of the 3 districts. The other two districts are Japantown in San Francisco and San Jose.

Little Tokyo
Source: Pixabay

This is considered the cultural hub for the American Japanese community. In 1995, Little Tokyo was declared as the National Historic Landmark District. The highlight of Little Tokyo for the shopping lovers out there is the mall with all sorts of Japanese related artefacts. Also, for food lovers, there are restaurants that serve authentic Japanese food.

Finally, the list of best things to do in Downtown LA has to come to an end. But there is still an ample number of attractions which the place the has to offer. As you would have already recognised the vibrance of Downtown LA in terms of things to do during a visit. Get in touch with the destination experts from Pickyourtrail to get the best out of your next vacation to the United States. Check out our guides page for more info on the destination or leave a Whatsapp inquiry for more options.

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