We’re heading into those Spring and Summer months when our parents are starting to plan their “vacations” where one of which may involve coming to LA to see you! Many of you have already read my last “Things To Do In LA With Your Parents” from a few months ago, and hopefully you are ready to discover more parent friendly activities. I’m pretty good at finding things to do with old people in LA so I’ve rounded up some more options to lessen the stress of trying to find things for us and our folks to enjoy together without feeling an overwhelming sense of awkwardness… just counting down the minutes till their departure when you can finally go back to normal life in LA being surrounded by sights such as whats typically featured in the “Only In LA” section of this blog. I promise this list will not bore you, your parents will not beg you to come home after what they’ve seen, and you’ll be a great “tour guide” and representative of some of the good things our strange fair town has to offer. Here we go!
1. Take Them To A DODGER GAME.
Obvious. The Dodgers are playing now until September, unless we go to the play offs and World Series which will take us through November. So, basically they play all year – take your parents to a freakin game! I have season tickets. I’m a little white girl. If you’re worried for some racist ass reason you and your parents might get shanked regardless of whose team you root for, let me break somethin’ to you: you wont. It’s baseball, the Dodgers are kicking ass, ticket prices are worth the experience, go have a beer and some hot dogs and kill 4 hours with your parents. Who ever went to a game and had a bad time. If such a person exists they’re no fun, but I’m gonna go ahead and give your parents some credit and say trust me, they’ll have a (shank free) good time all the while enjoying your company inside beautiful Dodger Stadium.
2. Hike on the Zuma Canyon Trail Or Hike to the Hollywood Sign
For the adventurous and active parents, LA has some great places to meander along a dirt trail. We’ve got two excellent choices here, depending on your whereabouts and what you’d like to see, but both are perfectly acceptable and relatively relaxed trails with killer views. Read up on an article I wrote about Malibu and the Zuma Trail here – more info, parking, etc., if you find the beach option interests you and the ‘rents more. If you’re up for more of a “touristy” hike to check out the famous Hollywood sign there’s this guy, with a website, who has detailed instructions on how to get there and more, click here and prepare for amazingness. And by amazingness I mean ridiculousness. And by ridiculousness I mean I’m not even mad, I’m impressed? AND… drum roll please… if you’ve got extra crazy adventurous parents, both trails offer trail rides by way of horse. I’ve always wanted to do that, but my parents wont be getting on horses anytime soon… party poopers. (More info on horseback riding options in both links too)
3. Lunch at Farmers Market and Shopping at The Grove
This is your simple and easy option and it involves shopping and food: win win. The Grove is LA’s staple shopping plaza; it’s charming as fuck, it has a plethora of great stores, a great movie theater, and a Topshop. I mean restaurants. Your parents are going to sigh in delight the minute they catch wind of the music playing throughout while walking under the twinkling strands of lights. “Is that… is that Frank Sinatra singing??” Yes mom. Yes it is. So go ahead and shop for a minute because who hates buying things – note there’s an Apple store if your dad is one of those dads and there’s also plenty of quaint benches in a park like setting to relax on and bask in the sun as you and your mom continue on your merry way. The next item on the agenda is the cherry on top: The Farmers Market. Located right at the edge of The Grove, walk through a tiny door way to food Narnia where you may have anything from a delicious donut, BBQ, sushi, pizza, a burger, Mediterranean food, basically what ever the fuck you want. There’s more to see and experience than just the restaurant vendors however: sit down and have a beer at E.B.’s, grab some cheeses, maybe some freshly baked bread, sausage at Huntington, and a pie from Du-Par’s to send home with your parents. We’re big on farmers markets in LA, and this one here is the king of all farmers markets. A day at the Grove is the perfect place to relax, kill time, and make fans of LA out of your parents. Click here for more info on vendors etc at the Farmers Market
4. Wine Tasting at Malibu Wines
If you’ve got parents like mine with a certain taste for the grape-ier things in life this is the spot to take them. A trip to Malibu Wines is the perfect day trip to make on a warm sunny day; they’re open 7 days a week 11am – 6pm so what ever day they may be in town this can be your daytime activity option. Best part is you have the option of picnicking!!! PARENTS LOVE TO PICNIC!!! In Malibu, none the less. A picnic in Malibu with wine? You just won the best son/daughter award. You’re welcome.
5. LACMA and Lunch on 3rd
For the culture curious parents, take them to a museum. LA has plenty, and they’re actually really really great museums worth seeing for yourself as well. I already told you in the last “What To Do In LA With Your Parents” to hit up The Getty or The Getty Villa, so LACMA should absolutely be next on your list. It’s very centrally located so it should be a breeze to get there from anywhere in LA, and by breeze I mean it shouldn’t take you more than an hour. Anyhoo, the LACMA is great because it hosts a pretty diverse collection of art – there’s something for just about everyone and it’s all truly phenomenal stuff. To make a day out of the trip to the museum I’d say having lunch at a spot nearby on 3rd Street is the perfect place to start or end the outing; it’s a hip street with great shops and some of LA’s favorite eateries. You have your choice of the infamous and delicious Joan’s On Third, the chic Little Next Door, best sushi in town at Izaka-ya, hip hot-spot Goldie’s, classic and gorgeous AOC, badass Mexican food at El Carmen, and tons more.
6. High Tea at Chado Tea Room or at The Langham Hotel Pasadena
This one’s for your mom. Dad can skip or he may surprise himself and find he enjoys tea and tiny sandwiches! But trust me on this one, this is really fun to do with mom. When do you guys ever get to do anything like that? Bet you didn’t even know there was such a thing in existence in Los Angeles! There are a few Chado Tea Room locations but I’d recommend the Downtown location where you have the option of sitting outside in their wonderful patio garden. The icing on the cake is this particular high tea spot wont break the bank like many other of its similar counterparts, and yet taste and experience in not compromised in the least because of this. I wrote a tidbit on my experience at Chado from a few months ago, if you’re curious and want to see some pictures too, click here for the article. If you’re looking for something a bit more upscale and special, head to the Langham Hotel in Pasadena for the most perfect and quintessential of High Tea’s – read all about my visit here. This is the perfect afternoon activity to kill a few hours and try something fun and unique at a place only LA offers. Your mother will love you for this one.
7. Indoor Shooting at a Gun Range
This one’s for dad. Once you’re all done sipping tea out of pretty cups why not go shoot some guns? You may be thinking ” Wtf? A shooting range? Who is this chick?” …well. My daddeh is from Texas, and his enjoyment sometimes involves practicing target shooting and I refuse to believe he’s the only dad out there who likes to shoot and happens to have a kid in LA! Now, I haven’t actually been shooting yet, but when he comes down from the Bay Area I have every intention of making sure his vacation involves a family trip to the firing range. Options include heading Downtown to the LA Gun Club, to Burbank for the Firing-Line Indoor Shooting Range, or to Inglewood for the LAX Firing Range. Parents visiting is a great excuse to try something new, and heading to the gun range is sure to be a memorable experience.
8. Cocktails at WP24
Hotel bars are a totally safe place to drink with your parents in peace, and WP24 just happens to be located at the top of the Ritz Carlton Downtown with 360 views of the whole dang city. Talk about impressive. If you find you’d like to find a spot where you guys may sit and enjoy a great view, cocktail in hand perhaps, this is the place to go. It’s overpriced, sure, but it’s never insanely over crowded, your parents wont be plugging their ears or standing around waiting for other patrons to get up, and you can all just totally relax – which lets be honest in the case of parents, is worth its weight in gold. If you’re feelin’ crazy and have the money to splurge, dinner here ain’t to shabby neither! It’s phenomenal actually, and hello, Wolfgang Puck is preparing your food. Where does he go wrong.
9. Brunch at Eveleigh or Cliffs Edge
If your parents are in town over a weekend it’s important you show them one of LA’s most valuable talents: brunch. Brunching in Los Angeles is mandatory and if you’re hoping to make the experience all the more perfect, take them somewhere that offers more than just delicious food. Eveleigh in WeHo and Cliffs Edge in Silver Lake are two places guaranteed to wow. Both offer one of a kind magical patio seating and some of the best damn brunch food this town has to offer, and thankfully reservations are an option. There’s nothing worse than waiting to eat, especially with old people – no one likes to be hangry and wait, so plan ahead friends.
10. A Modern Italian Dinner at Sotto, Scarpetta, Angelini Osteria, Osteria Mozza, Bestia, or Hostaria Del Piccolo – Depending On Your Whereabouts
For what ever reason Los Angeles knows Italian food and they know how to make it well, and all of these spots boast noteworthy culinary accomplishments all the while being completely parent friendly. A cozy atmosphere, high ratings, great wine lists, handmade pizzas and pastas, normal people patrons, and friendly staff members will leave any parent pleased with your choice in dining. All of these spots have some of the highest ratings on Yelp and other LA based media outlets so it’s completely up to you where you decide to go, all have earned my parent friendly stamp of approval. If you’re West Side head to Hostaria Del Piccolo (Venice and Santa Monica), or Sotto (Pico-Roberston). If you’re more centrally located head to Scarpetta (Beverly Hills), Angeleni Osteria (Fairfax) or Osteria Mozza (*this one’s expensive, Hancock Park). And if you’re more East, head to Bestia Downtown (*this one is also expensive, but every Angeleno will tell you it’s worth it). They’ll be telling all their friends about their amazing dinner they had with you in LA, trust me.