Top 20 Things to do in Downtown LA (2023)

Top 20 Things to do in Downtown LA (1)

Downtown Los Angeles has a little something for everyone! Whether you’re looking to explore art and culture, get active, or just relax with a good meal and some nightlife, you’ll find plenty of options in Downtown LA.

As someone who’s lived in the downtown area for over a year now, here is my list of the top things to do in downtown LA!

Is Downtown Los Angeles worth visiting?

Downtown Los Angeles is often overlooked by visitors because it doesn’t have many of the famous tourist attractions that other parts of the city boast. However, there’s plenty to see and do in Downtown LA, and it’s well worth a visit.

For starters, Downtown LA is home to some of the best shopping in the city. There’s something for everyone, from high-end designer stores to thrift shops in the Fashion District.

The area also has a vibrant nightlife scene, with plenty of bars and clubs to keep you entertained into the early hours. And if you’re a fan of art and culture, Downtown LA’s Arts District is definitely the place for you. You’ll also find numerous museums, bookstores, theatres, and live music venues.

If you’re looking for ways to spend a day in Downtown Los Angeles, here’s a list of the top 20 things to do in Downtown LA:

The Broad

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There are many things to do in Downtown LA, but one of the best things to do is visit The Broad. The Broad is a contemporary art museum that has been open since 2015.

The museum has two floors of galleries and a rooftop deck with views of Downtown Los Angeles. The Broad is free to the public, and no tickets are required. However, you will need toreserve a timeslotin advance.

Some things you can do at The Broad include taking a picture in front of the “Infinity Mirrored Room,” visiting the “Artist Rooms,” and seeing the exhibitions on the second floor. You can also take a break on the rooftop deck and enjoy the views of Downtown Los Angeles.

Walt Disney Concert Hall

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Just a two-minute walk from the Broad is the Walt Disney Concert Hall. The Walt Disney Concert Hall is a must-see. Designed by Frank Gehry, the building is made up of sweeping curves and intricate metalwork.

Grand Central Market

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(Video) 20 Things to do in Los Angeles

Looking for things to do in downtown LA? Check out the Grand Central Market! This historic market has been a LA staple since 1917, and it’s the perfect place to find fresh food, local goods, and much more.

Wandering through the market is a great way to get a taste of the city, and you’re sure to find something to your liking – whether it’s fresh produce, deliciously prepared food, or one-of-a-kind gifts. Plus, the market is always bustling with activity, so it’s the perfect place to people-watch and soak up the LA vibe.

The Last Bookstore

The Last Bookstore is in the heart of downtown Los Angeles and is one of the most unique things to do in the area. The store is full of used books, records, and other items that have been donated or sold to the store.

The store also has a wide variety of new books, including many rare and hard-to-find titles. In addition to books, the store also sells art, jewelry, and other items. The store is also home to a number of events, including author readings and book signings.

The store also has a small café called Café Metropolitan, which sells coffee, pastries, and sandwiches. So, feel free to grab a coffee or a snack while browsing the shelves!

Bradbury Building

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Be sure to check out the Bradbury Building. With its ornate ironwork and skylit atrium, it’s easy to see why this building has been featured in so many movies and TV shows!

Ignite your wanderlust at Union Station

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Downtown Los Angeles is home to Union Station, the largest and busiest train station in the Western United States. Built in 1939, Union Station is a beautiful example of Mission Revival architecture, with an impressive main concourse that features a barrel-vaulted ceiling and a stunning coffered skylight. This historical spot is the perfect place to ignite your wanderlust!

Stroll through Olvera Street

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Olvera Street should definitely be on your radar when exploring DTLA. Olvera Street is the site of the city’s original Spanish settlement. Today, it’s a thriving marketplace popular with locals and tourists alike.

You’ll find everything from Mexican handicrafts to traditional food at the stalls and shops, and there’s always something going on thanks to the regular festivals and events.

Santee Alley

(Video) 23 Things to Do in Downtown Los Angeles

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Santee Alley is a pedestrian-only walkway in the Fashion District. It is lined with stalls selling everything from clothes to shoes to cosmetics. Bargain-hunters will love browsing through the racks of discount designer items.

There are also plenty of food options available if you need a break from shopping. Whether you’re looking for a new outfit or just want to explore a different side of LA, Santee Alley is worth a visit. Fun fact, Santee Alley is where I like to browse for fabrics and funky attire to make my festival outfits!


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Chinatown is one of the most incredible and vibrant neighborhoods in Los Angeles. It’s a great place to eat, drink, shop, and people-watch. There’s always something going on, and the street art is some of the best in the city.

Chinatown should definitely be on your list if you’re looking for things to do in downtown LA. From dim sum and dumplings to bubble tea and boba, there’s no shortage of delicious food to try. You can also find unique gifts and souvenirs at the many shops and markets.

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Little Tokyo is a historic downtown Los Angeles neighborhood with a rich Japanese culture. It is home to the world’s largest concentration of Japanese people outside of Japan and is known for its delicious food, traditional shops, and lively events. Visitors can enjoy Japanese cuisine, shop for souvenirs, and participate in annual events.

See Also:
  • Ultimate Guide to Little Tokyo in Los Angeles


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From delicious Korean food to lively karaoke bars, there’s something for everyone in Koreatown. And with so many things to do, it’s easy to spend an entire day exploring this vibrant neighborhood. You can visit an authentic Korean Spa, for example!

Arts District

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As someone who lives in the Arts District, I hold a special place in my heart for this part of downtown LA. The arts district is one of the most vibrant and creative places in all of Los Angeles. And with new businesses and attractions popping up all the time, there’s always something new to discover!

See also:
  • Top Things to do in Downtown LA’s Arts District
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Spire 73 at the InterContinental

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Looking for a place to hang out and have a drink? Check out Spire 73 at the Intercontinental Hotel! Standing at 73 stories tall, it’s the tallest rooftop bar in the Western Hemisphere, providing stunning views of the city below. Sip on cocktails while taking in the sights or enjoy small bites with friends.


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If you want a unique dining experience in downtown LA, head on over to 71andAbove restaurant! This unique dining experience will take you to new heights, literally. That’s because the restaurant is located on the 71st floor of a skyscraper, offering stunning views of the cityscape.

And the food is just as impressive, with a menu that features creative dishes from around the world. I took my husband here for his birthday dinner celebration, and it did not disappoint!

LA Live

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If you’re looking for things to do in downtown LA, you can’t go wrong with a visit to LA Live or the Grammy Museum. Both attractions offer something unique and exciting for visitors to enjoy.

At LA Live, you can catch a game or concert at the Staples Center, dine at one of the many restaurants, or simply enjoy the atmosphere of this vibrant entertainment complex. With so much to see and do, La Live is the perfect place to spend a day or evening in downtown LA.

The Grammy Museum is a must-visit for music lovers of all ages. Here, you can learn about the history of the Grammy Awards, see exhibits on your favorite artists, and even attend workshops and events.

Smorgasbord at ROW DTLA

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Smorgasbord is a Sunday market located in ROW DTLA. The selections include various foods, including several vegan and gluten-free options. In addition to the food, Smorgasbord also offers a selection of drinks, including cold-pressed juices, matcha lattes, and kombucha on tap. There is also a 21+ only beer garden.

Catch a Game at Dodger’s Stadium

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There’s no better way to experience America’s pastime than catching a game at Dodger Stadium. Located in the heart of downtown Los Angeles, Dodger Stadium is one of the most iconic sports venues in the world.

So, whether you’re a die-hard fan or just looking for something to check off your bucket list, catching a game at Dodger Stadium is sure to be a memorable one.

Picnic in Grand Park

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Take a walk or have a relaxing picnic in Grand Park, which is home to some of the city’s best public art, beautiful greenery, and plenty of shade to escape the beaming Southern California sun.

Flower Market

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the Flower Market is a must-see for any visitor. This vibrant marketplace is open every day of the week, and it’s a great place to find fresh flowers and plants, as well as unique gifts and souvenirs.


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in Downtown LA, the nightlife scene is not to be missed. There’s something for everyone, from hip bars and clubs to live music venues and rooftop lounges. There’s so much to do. In fact, I dedicated an entire post about it here.

See also:
  • Ultimate Guide to Los Angeles Nightlife

Things to avoid in Downtown Los Angeles

Downtown LA is often thought of as a dangerous place, but the truth is that it’s one of the safest cities in the country. However, there is one area you should avoid, and that’s Skid Row.

Skid Row is home to a large population of homeless people, and it can be dangerous at night if you’re not careful. If you do find yourself in skid row, stick to well-lit areas and don’t flash any expensive valuables.

That concludes my list of the top things to do in Downtown LA! Is there anything you would add?

(Video) 10 Best Things to do in Downtown Los Angeles


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