Four Unique and/or Weird Things To See in Downtown Los Angeles

Los Angeles is where I call home (for the majority of the time that is). So it’s funny for me to think that I’ve never really explored the downtown area. Now that I have a friend that lives in the area, I’ve been spending a significant amount of time falling in love with the city. Here’s a list of four weird and/or unique things to see¬†in downtown Los Angeles. The best part, it’s all within a two block radius so you don’t have to worry about parking. ūüėČ Enjoy!

Downtown Los Angeles Main and 5th

Downtown Los Angeles Map, center point Main and 5th – Click to enlarge.

Cocktail from Varnish

The Varnish

118 EAST 6TH STREET
Los Angeles, CA 90014

Imagine yourself entering a French dip restaurant. Walking past the host to the back wall only to find an unmarked door which leads to one of downtown LAs oldest speakeasys. If this sounds like fun to you then make your way to The Varnish, located in the back of Cole’s restaurant. It is a small dark intimate space which offers amazing cocktails and an exclusive vibe. They don’t allow overcrowding so you have to wait outside of the speakeasy¬†for a table. Grab a seat at the bar at Cole’s while you wait. Where else can you ¬†grab a French dip sandwich one minute and then sip a Moscow mule in a speakeasy without ever stepping outside?

Peddler's Creamery

PEDDLER’S CREAMERY

458 SOUTH MAIN STREET
LOS ANGELES, CA 90013

Have you ever heard of an ice-creamery where you can pedal for a free scoop? Well I hadn’t heard of it until I stumbled upon Peddler’s Creamery. Now the thought of having to exercise for 20 minutes before I can get some ice cream isn’t the most appealing thing to me, but some people go for that kind of stuff! So check this place out, even if it’s just to be a lookey¬†loo to watch others bike for their scoop.

Angel Wings on Main by Colette Miller

Angel Wings on Main by Colette Miller

ANGEL WINGS ON MAIN

448 S Main STREET
Los Angeles, CA 90013

Located right next to Peddler’s Creamery is the Regent Theater. What¬†makes this place unique are¬†the art installation pieces by Colette Miller. A pair of angel wings located on the sliding gates. Make sure to get there before the place opens, or else you’ll miss your chance for a photo-op.

The Last Bookstore

The Last Bookstore. Not sure if that was a reflection on my forehead or an orb. ;p

THE LAST BOOKSTORE

453 S Spring Street
LOS ANGELES, CA 90013

Now, The Last Bookstore may not really be the last bookstore but it is considered one of California’s largest. The store carries new and used books as well as records and art installations. You’ll find surprises around every corner… literally!

5 Unique Travel Finds in NYC

As much as I love doing the classic cheesy touristy stuff when traveling (i.e. Big Red Bus tours), I usually try to find unique things to do that are more off the beaten path.¬† I don’t know why, but researching and finding unique activities makes me feel like I gain better experiences and end up with more exciting stories.¬† Or at least I’d like to think that I do!¬† ūüôā

Here is a list of some unique finds in New York that you might want to check out.  Let me know if you end up with any crazy stories!

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Large Margarita Pizza

Lombardi’s Pizza

32 Spring St, New York, NY 10012

Their claim to fame is being America’s FIRST pizzeria.¬† I don’t know about you, but the historical value alone¬†is reason enough¬†to check them out. ¬†So when I decided to stop and eat here, it was a great surprise that not only is this a historic location, but the pizza is very good as well!

FYI, this place is cash only.¬† If you decide to go in and dine, I’d recommend going with a large pizza.¬† It’s only around¬†$3 more than the regular size and it¬†visually looks almost twice the size (great for photo-ops). Besides, who doesn’t love leftovers??

The High Line

Street level access on W 34th st (between 11th and 12th ave) midtown west

The High Line is a historic elevated freight rail turned public park. ¬†Walking this trail offers a unique birds eye view and immerses you into the city¬†as the trail runs through the center of blocks in between buildings. There are various art installations, wall murals, and look-out points along the way, so you don’t forget your camera!¬† The trail¬†runs from West 34th Street in Midtown to Gansevoort Street in the Meatpacking District, between 10th and 12th Avenues.

Famous apartments

Carrie Bradshaw’s Apartment – 64 Perry St, New york, NY 10014

friends Apartment building – 90 Bedford St, New York, NY 10014

Both apartment buildings are conveniently located within walking distance of one another in the Greenwich Village.¬† It’s fun to go hunt for these buildings during the day since there are many little shops and restaurants to see in the area.¬† Carrie’s apartment in the show is located on the third floor of the building.¬† Visitors are able to take photos outside of the property but, since it is a private residence, the stairs are chained off.¬† The Friend’s apartment building is located on the corner of Bedford and Grove St.¬† This is the building where Monica and Joey’s apartments are located.¬† Unfortunately, Central Perk does not exist, but there is a cute little restaurant located in its place.

Cake Decorating Classes at Carlo’s Bake Shop

631 Grove Street, Jersey City, NJ 07030

I stumbled upon this class though Groupon and I’m so glad I did because it was one of the best experiences I had on my trip.¬† The class focused on the basics of working with fondant.¬† It was fun, simple, and not at all overwhelming.¬† Before the class you get to take a mini-tour of the warehouse and at the end you get to take home your apron and cake.¬† I flew home the next day and was able to take the cake with me as a carry-on item.¬† Classes are held at various locations throughout New Jersey, with the Lakawana location being closest to Manhattan.

Fishs Eddy

889 Broadway, New York, NY 10003

If you are looking for fun kitschy souvenirs, I’d recommended checking out Fishs Eddy, an Americana themed kitchenware and gift store.¬† You may be wondering why you would purchase kitchenware as a souvenir (which is the same thing I asked myself when my friend dragged me in there), BUT you’d be surprised with the unique New York/Brooklyn themed finds that won’t cost you an arm and a leg.¬† The National 9/11 Memorial & Museum gift shop actually carries Fishs Eddy items, so just cut the middle man and go directly to the store.¬† I purchased the cutest miniature Statue of Liberty (about 2 inches tall) and my friend fell in love with a Ruth Ginsburg mug.¬† Other fun items for sale include New York/Brooklyn themed tote bags, dish towels, trays, shot glasses, coasters, etc.¬† Go in and have a look.¬† It’s at least a cute location to window shop.