After seeking breakfast and coffee at the food court across the road we headed out by metro to Hollywood to the walk of fame and to see "the sign". No issue with metro in LA - all smooth sailing and we were soon there.
The walk of fame has thousands of stars on it and goes a long distance.
You look at all the famous names as you walk so it's very easy to bump into people and things with your head down. You do need to look up too as the old Art Deco buildings are also interesting.
Many lovely buildings are old theatres - heaps on Hollywood boulevard.
Looking down, you can go crazy taking photos of the stars... But the Governator deserved a photo.
As you approach The Dolby theatre and Grauman's Chinese theatre there are more and more characters dressed up for photo ops (with a tip of course). This guy made us laugh as he sneaked up behind us. Very cute...the one on the right.
And lots and lots of tourists too but we are all there for the same thing. The Hollywood sign, the Academy Awards location and famous foot prints and handprints. A selection of photos below.
Grauman's from across the street
Merryl's skinny little feet...
The top of the Dolby theatre with the Hollywood sign in the distance.
From here Lisa suggested a hop on hop off bus to take us via Beverly Hills to Santa Monica. It came with commentary as we drove along and was a good idea as we learned a few fun facts. Not ideal for photos.
Our main destination for the day, the beach. It's quite a distance so all up took us more than an hour to get there from Hollywood so we opted for a nice lunch in the plaza before exploring more. Di has been eyeing off cheesecake for a week now and caved in...delicious.
Finally the pier and the beach - lovely and popular today. Lisa loves the beach and smiled the whole time.
Looking north towards Malibu the mountains really hug the coast. Very scenic.
We turned south and promenaded to Venice Beach. By fluke we also passed Hotel California...you can check out anytime you like...
Fantastic weather- an ocean breeze and blue skies. Lovely day for a wander. Not crowded at all once you're away from the pier.
We reached Venice and needed a quick refreshment. This bar had Corona's on a Happy Hour special, a busker outside (a cool dude playing blues) and a view of the beach. Easy choice.
Then onto the Venice Boardwalk with all the eccentricities. So much fun, colour and movement.
A special mention to the Green Doctors who provide "medical" marijuana, after a formal evaluation. Hence the people inside filling out forms. Not for us. We'll stick to alcohol.
And our favourite of the day...Lisa! Wearing a bikini. We laughed, patted the dog and chatted with the owner for a whole about red cattle dogs and the movie Red Dog. And of course we tipped Lisa!
Realising it would take a while or get back to our hotel we left Venice around 5ish to go back to Santa Monica.
Di had researched the metro buses back to down and there were several that went direct rather than take hop on hop off to Beverly Hills, then to Hollywood, then train. Estimates on google was 59 minutes (see evidence below). Ha! NOT in LA peak hour traffic. Try 2 hours on a bus. Even the driver was shaking her head. Di and Lisa had to get off for a quick bathroom break at one point and caught the following bus but still it was 2 hours in total. With at least one crazy muttering guy on each bus. The first one sat right behind us. He sounded educated and articulate and spent the whole timer citing facts about everything from Taylor Swift to the Academy Awards to a salad bar chain. The second guy was silently talking to the floor (perhaps an imaginary dog?). A third guy was wearing a hospital wrist band and Di heard him mention to the driver he'd just had an operation and was in lots of pain. It appears social services are struggling to keep up (as with everywhere when dealing with mental health issues, and Australia is no shining light.)
The bus finally reached Santa Monica Vermont station and we have never been soo happy to see a train station!
10 minutes and we were back downtown and back to our hotel at 8.15. A quick change and out for dinner but no photos after such a big day.