Latest Best of LA

Best Off The Beaten Path Things To Do In Los Angeles

February 22, 2015 11:28 AM

(credit: istockphoto)

(credit: istockphoto)

When your usual entertainment options don’t seem quite so entertaining anymore, it’s time to shake things up. Consider giving convention a mighty heave-ho with the following out-of-the-box outings:
luchavavoom Best Off The Beaten Path Things To Do In Los Angeles


Lucha Vavoom
The Mayan Theater
1038 S. Hill Street
Los Angeles, CA 90015

Take authentic Mexican masked wrestlers, throw in some burlesque striptease, outrageous comedians and some ‘little people’ and you’ve got one of the most raucous, racy, and original events our fair city has to offer. Luchavavoom (their motto is “Sexo y Violencia) entertains thousands of fans every other month at the Mayan in Downtown Los Angeles. The high flying action-packed wrestling matches alternate with saucy stripteases. Careful with those front row tickets — regulars warn a luchadore (Mexican wrestler) will mostly likely land in your lap. The flowing tequila, jamming mariachi and souvenir photo ops with your favorite strippers and wrestlers all help channel your inner “vavoom.” Make sure to go to the website and sign up for their newsletter for details. The Halloween show is not to be missed!

swimming hole Best Off The Beaten Path Things To Do In Los Angeles
Swimming Holes
Malibu Creek State Park
1925 Las Virgines Rd.
Agoura Hills, CA 91376

When the kids start to whine about going to the beach for the millionth time, you know it’s time to reconsider your cool-down locale. Why not consider a good ol’ fashioned swimming hole? From shallow wading pools to dark, deep craters, they each have their own unique character and are often at the base of a beautiful waterfall. And since the majority of swimming holes are fed by underground springs, they are full, fresh and chilly all year round. The good news and the bad news is that most are off the beaten path so be prepared to hike for your little slice of paradise. Most kids can manage the trek to the Rock Pool at Malibu Creek State Park and Eaton Canyon, but there are others that intrepid hikers can find, too.

(credit: Big Mama's M./Yelp)

(credit: Big Mama’s M./Yelp)

Visit LA’s Oldest Cemetery
Evergreen Cemetery
204 N Evergreen Ave
Los Angeles, CA 90033
(323) 268-6714

Located on the east side in Boyle Heights, Evergreen Cemetery might not be the first thing you think of for fun, but if you’re looking to get off the beaten path, this one’s for you. Many prominent people are buried here, including pioneers of Los Angeles such as mayors of Los Angeles, comics, aviators, civil rights activists and more. You’ll notice names like Lankershim, Van Nuys and others who influenced the street names of Los Angeles. There’s even a jogging path that runs right through it and a great view of Downtown Los Angeles.

(credit: Junkyardsparkle/Wikipedia)

(credit: Junkyardsparkle/Wikipedia)

Abandoned Zoo
Griffith Park Dr
Los Angeles, CA 90027

If you’re looking for a little LA history, head over to Griffith Park and uncover the lost history of the old Griffith Park zoo. It might seem a bit eerie at first, but hiking around this abandoned zoo is pretty fascinating. The zoo, which served the public for over five decades and closed in 1966, has left behind ruins of animal enclosures, and is now a great place to picnic and go for a hike.

(credit: David McNew/Getty Images)

(credit: David McNew/Getty Images)

Electric Dusk Drive-In Outdoor Movie
1000 San Julian Street
Los Angeles, CA 90015
(818) 653-8591

As Downtown LA’s hippest outdoor movie venue, you’re not just stepping foot into an outdoor theatre. Instead, you’re stepping back in time to when the drive-in reigned supreme. Complete with snacks like hot dogs, hamburgers, veggie burgers and more as well as audio that ports right into your car, you might just feel like you’ve stepped back in time.

(credit: AP)

(credit: AP)

The Museum Of Death
6031 Hollywood Blvd
Hollywood, CA 90028
(323) 466-8011

Located appropriately in the heart of Hollywood, The Museum of Death opened its doors in 1995 by owners who realized there was a need to educated the public about death. As a self-guided tour which lasts approximately 45 minutes, you’ll discover everything from autopsy instruments, photos of the Charles Manson crime scenes, original crime scene photos, and much more. A bit gory, but interesting nonetheless.

(credit: Christine A./Yelp)

(credit: Christine A./Yelp)

Time Travel Mart
1714 Sunset Blvd
Los Angeles, CA
(213) 413-3388

Want to take a travel back in time and explore items the start of time or from before you were born? Luckily for you, that exists right here in Los Angeles at the Time Travel Mart. Described as a “convenience store for time travelers,” this store features items from every era including books, Primordial Soup In A Can, barbarian repellent, and more. It may be filled with oddities, but it’ll keep you curious for a good while as you browse through the store.

(credit: Wildlife Learning Center)

(credit: Wildlife Learning Center)

The Wildlife Learning Center
16027 Yarnell St
Sylmar, CA 91342
(818) 362-8711

Offering a sanctuary to animals, The Wildlife Learning Center is a great place for visitors to not only just see animals but also interact with them. From lions and sloths to porcupines, burmese python’s and more, you’ll get a chance to really learn about these interesting animals.

grunion Best Off The Beaten Path Things To Do In Los Angeles


Grunion Run
Cabrillo Beach in San Pedro
(310) 548-7562

What is a grunion, you ask? And why would I want to see it run? So glad you asked! Grunion are little silvery fish that occasionally wash onto shore by the thousands, bury themselves halfway in the sand to lay eggs, and then catch the next wave or two back to sea. Whether you’re a nature lover or just itching to veer off the beaten path of LA to-do’s, this late night spawning party, which leaves the beach shimmering with sea life, is truly something to behold. Your best chance of witnessing the phenomenon is at high tide during a full moon between March and August – make sure to check the schedule before venturing out. And don’t forget bring a flashlight and a bucket (and a fishing license if you’re over 16) if you want to collect bait…or dinner. Cabrillo Beach has a special grunion program, but they can be seen at all Southland beaches.

Noelle Wright is a freelance writer and producer living in Los Angeles. When she’s not working, she’s looking for cool things to do with her 7 year old son Theo. She will not be taking him to Lucha VaVOOM.

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