There are many free what you can do cheaply in Los Angeles. Your challenge as a traveler is to reach them. The current price for a rental car from Los Angeles International Airport is about $75 per day, excluding taxes and gas. Taxi and app-based rides between the airport and downtown range from $40 to $70, depending on the time of day. Additionally, overnight parking fees of $50 to $60 are not uncommon.
But there are better options. The subway costs $1.75 a dollar, or $5 a day, which is a bargain. pass Or $18 for a week.
In Los Angeles, the land of traffic jams, your go-to vehicle is your car. But for decades, Los Angeles County’s public transit system Metrohas built more than 100 stations on seven lines since 1990, including the new K Line, which runs south of Los Angeles in October, trying to keep Angelenos off the car. In June, the Regional Connector Transit project consolidated downtown connections, allowing direct east-west travel between East Los Angeles and Santa Monica and north-south travel between Azusa and Long Beach. Another enhancement planned for 2024 is Los Angeles International Airportone of nine future stations scheduled to open before the 2028 Summer Olympics.
The usefulness of the system for residents depends on where they live in the sprawling city. But Time Out Media’s Los Angeles Editor-in-Chief Michael Giuliano said: written About this system, “Most of the places you want to go as a tourist are on the metro line.”
Nothing makes a destination feel more intimate than successfully navigating it. In my opinion, knowing a place doesn’t mean knowing a place unless you can find it using local transportation. When I told a friend that I was going to see the city of Los Angeles on the subway, one joked, “It’s going to be a very short story.” Angeleno, who admitted he had never been on a train, advised him to bring pepper spray.
But after three days on the rails, it turns out they were mostly wrong. Not only does the subway take you to popular attractions, from Santa Monica’s beaches to downtown museums, but trains run frequently.In my experience there have been no threats, but the system had a hard time The trains are clearly flooded with homeless people. On several occasions, I have ridden with Metro ambassadors, employees who move through the system to educate and keep the public safe.
Covering more than 4,000 square miles and 88 cities, there was a place the subway couldn’t reach. A travel agency offers guided hikes to iconic sites. hollywood sign Told me their starting point was not near public transportation. Bus routes and ride services can fill the gap, but he has one notable exception. flyaway busruns to and from the airport approximately every 30 minutes. union station Downtown ($9.75) — I stuck with trains to test their utility. Here is what i found.
All lines lead to downtown
The flyaway bus dropped me off at Union Station. Union Station is his 1939 Mission Modern gem, serving not only as a hub for Amtrak trains and regional trains, but metro link In addition to serving Los Angeles County and five surrounding counties, it also serves as a junction for three subway lines: A, B, and D.
These subway lines stop at several stations within downtown. The area is packed with cultural attractions, including original Mexican settlements. Olvera Street Across from Union Station, and many hotels, freehand los angeles.
About four blocks from downtown’s nearest subway station, this retro hotel in the 1924 Commercial Exchange Building features student-favorite, multi-bed, hostel-style rooms, as well as macrame wall hangings and They also offer private rooms like mine (I paid $150 a night) with eclectic art reminiscent of a thrift store.
The next morning, at a nearby subway station, I noticed guests on the same budget: a French family in town for a Lakers game, a couple of Danish backpackers, and a group of Irish students. .
“Guests ask for schedules and nearest stops, and we drive everywhere, so that’s a little bit funny,” hotel general manager Rich Oaken said of staff.
Between subway and walking, we found downtown easy to navigate and plentiful to explore. wide The museum (free) is home to an impressive contemporary art collection by collectors Eli and Edith Broad, filled with works by Basquiat, Lichtenstein and Warhol. On the next block we rested in a quiet garden at the back. Walt Disney Concert Halla swooping steel landmark by architect Frank Gehry.
Nearby, I rode the shortest railroad in Los Angeles. angels flighta cable car built in 1901 that takes you up a hill for 50 cents if you have a Metrocard (or $1 if you don’t).
Next stop: Hollywood
The B line runs northwest from downtown to downtown Hollywood. Leviting up at the Hollywood/Highland station was like appearing in a sun drenched, low-rise Times Square. Actors dressed as Spider-Man and Michael Jackson posed with tourists and asked for tips. The barker was pitching a TMZ bus tour of celebrity hangouts. I immediately passed the Groucho Marx star. Hollywood Walk of FameIn , Tom Cruise shared the sidewalk with Weird Al Yankovic, and a fan took a selfie with a Snoop Dogg plaque.
The Starry Sky Route was the 1927 Grauman’s Chinese Theater (now TCL Chinese Theater) So I measured Robert De Niro and myself among the many celebrity salutes cemented on the pavement in front of the entrance.
The B line will take you to less noisy areas such as Koreatown. I turned back there to enjoy the umami-oiled salmon from the conveyor belt sushi. Warehouse ($3.65 per dish).
This route also provides an out-of-the-box solution to get there. Griffith Park, the lush Santa Monica Mountains Preserve offers panoramic city views and numerous walking trails.Took the free train from the Vermont/Sunset B line stop Radot Dash bus to Griffith Park Observatorypopular for its rooftop views, and watched a moving star show at the planetarium ($10).
take the train to the beach
First-time visitors are often surprised by the sheer size of the Los Angeles Subway, which encompasses Long Beach to the south, Malibu to the west, and the San Gabriel Mountains to the east.
“People want to come to California and go to the beach, but Santa Monica is about 19 miles from downtown Los Angeles, and 12 miles is a long time, whether you drive or take public transportation. “I don’t know,” he said. This is Oken, the freehand janitor.
At 8:30 am on Wednesday, Google Maps enabled me to catch the train. E-line From downtown, it’s just over an hour, the same as driving, except for finding parking.
The E line ends a few blocks away from the popular area. Santa Monica PierAmusement park rides and restaurants were packed and closed for most of the morning, but a guitarist played a solitary Latino standard. “Quiz, quiz, quiz” For walkers who enjoy quiet scenery.
beach cruiser bike rental blazing saddle ($13 an hour) We paddled about 3 miles south on the pier to the seaside district of Venice. Quad roller skaters performing pirouettes were the center of attention there.
Home to well-maintained boutique hotels and trendy restaurants, Santa Monica has an upscale feel, an impression reinforced by colorful Jamaican huts. cha cha chickenLocated just one block from the beach, it serves spicy jerk chicken plates (starting at $11.95) on a shaded patio surrounded by Bob Marley paintings.
“Connect with Creativity”
Metro brings a new one to the market K-line Posters are plastered throughout the system, encouraging passengers to ‘connect to creativity’. This is a reference to the community of South Los Angeles that has nurtured artists such as Kehinde Wiley and actress Issa Rae, and to the public at each station for her art.
“Art is part of the introduction to the system,” says Maya Emsden, who oversees Metro’s public art program, including commissioning art for each of the current seven stations on the K Line. “It’s an eye opener.”
On the last afternoon, I boarded the K, departing from the northernmost Expo/Crenshaw stop, where it joined the E train and passed through the communities of Crenshaw and Inglewood. SoFi Stadiumwhere the Rams and Chargers of the NFL play.
Crenshaw has yet to reveal some of the most interesting art on the route.economic development agency Destination Crenshaw has commissioned works by more than 100 black artists to be installed at the center of the park and on the railroad tracks of the 2.1-mile overhead line along Crenshaw Boulevard. The organization’s president and chief operating officer, Jason Foster, said over coffee that the project would be an expression of “our talent, creativity and passion for our community.” hot & cool cafe Near Leimart Park stop.
From the cafe we walked a few blocks to the future Sankofa park grounds. It is a wedge-shaped block with a garden and a pedestrian ramp to the second floor. The park, which is set to open in February next year, is part of a $100 million project and will feature Mr. Wiley’s sculpture of ”.rumors of war” series and “car cultureby Compton, California-based artist Charles Dixon depicts an African figure crowned with a car.
“This will be the first thing people see in Los Angeles once the airport connection is complete,” said Foster, adding that he hopes the park will become a local landmark. Little Tokyo again Mariachi Squareboth accessible by train.
For three days, I never reached the Hollywood sign. But wherever I went, it saved me money, emissions, and immense stress caused by traffic jams.
Follow The New York Times Travel upon Instagram and Sign up for our weekly Travel Dispatch newsletter Get expert tips and inspiration for your next vacation to travel smarter.Dreaming of a future vacation or just an armchair trip? Check us out 52 places to visit in 2023.