Last updated on January 28, 2024 by Stefano Ferro, founder of MEL365, following extensive travelling in California

Los Angeles in one day

I love exploring cities and I enjoy so much spending a day doing just photography.

Time is always a concern unfortunately and it happens quite frequently that I can spare only a day to visit a place.

Can you cover all of Los Angeles in a day?

Not really, however, you can see many sites if you are ready for a marathon from sunrise to sunset.

Last week I was in San Francisco, it is now time for the Los Angeles photography journey.

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Los Angeles in one day – A photography journey

I started my day going out before dawn and the destination was: Runyon Canyon Park.

To get there you will need to drive early and then go for a walk on a trail with a lot of hills so I would recommend wearing good hiking shoes.

It is a good place to enjoy the sunrise while seeing Los Angeles city at 360 degrees.

If you cannot make it all over the top, the same road taking you to this park has a small parking lot (it could be busy depending on the time of the day) where you can see the Hollywood sign as well as part of the city skyline, it is called Hollywood Bowl Overlook.

Los Angeles in one day - Hollywood Sign
Los Angeles in one day – Hollywood Sign

Then it is time to get into Los Angeles Downtown.

I would recommend allowing enough time if you are planning to do it during the weekdays since the traffic could be really bad, especially during the rush hour.

The best time to go is during the weekend if you want to take photos of buildings and monuments without having many people around.

Los Angeles in one day

Los Angeles in one day

Los Angeles in one day
Los Angeles in one day

The next stop is Rodeo Dr in Beverly Hills, famous for the shopping and major tourist attraction. Some people say that it is almost a theme park which must be considered on any tour in LA.

Los Angeles in one day

Finally, my last destinations of the day were Santa Monica and Malibu.

You can always get into Santa Monica using public transport but I would recommend driving into Santa Monica and then all the way up northwest to Malibu.

The scenery is simply amazing and stunning, with the ocean and beaches on your left side and the hills on your right side.

If you love sunsets, you must go to Santa Monica Pier or park on any of the parking lots along the road to Malibu and just enjoy it.

Los Angeles in one day

Travel & Photography Tips

  • Head to Runyon Canyon Park for the best sunrise panoramic view of the city. You will be impressed by the size magnitude of the city.
  • Wear some good hiking shoes to walk the hills on Runyon Canyon Park
  • Los Angeles Downtown could be quite busy some times so weekends are the best option for street photography
  • If you are driving to Rodeo Dr in Beverly Hills, I would suggest parking a few blocks away on quiet streets and walk
  • The best time to visit Santa Monica or Malibu is at sunset to take some stunning photos

The Los Angeles photography journey map

This post was written in collaboration with Victor Rodriguez, our US expert

Stefano Ferro - Founder and Editor

About the Author

Stefano is a seasoned travel expert and the visionary founder of, a leading travel website with traffic across 6 continents. With a rich background in the travel industry, Stefano spent four pivotal years at Amadeus Travel Distribution System, gaining invaluable insights into travel technologies and distribution.

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