Los Angeles - Need Help with Itinerary

Old Oct 11th, 2010, 07:16 AM
  #1  
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Los Angeles - Need Help with Itinerary

We are planning a trip to LA from 12/20 departing on Christmas Day.
We were thinking of staying in Santa Monica for 3 days so we could walk to restaurants and shops and then maybe go to Newport Beach / Laguna Beach area for 2 days.

The main attraction we want to see is The Getty Museum.

Would you stay in Santa Monica or elsewhere? What other major sites would you recommend?

Will traffic be bad driving from Newport Beach to LAX on Christmas Day?
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Old Oct 11th, 2010, 07:21 AM
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By Getty Museum do you mean Getty Villa in Malibu or Getty Center in Brentwood?

HTTY
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Old Oct 11th, 2010, 07:45 AM
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The problem with staying near restaurants and shops that week is that the shops will be absolutely mobbed with last-minute shoppers for the entire time of your visit. Otherwise Santa Monica is quite convenient to both the Getty Villa and The Getty Museum. Just stay away from the morning traffic until 10am, and the afternoon traffic from 4 to 7:30. It should take about 15 mins to drive to the Gettys.
I would also recommend an evening visit to the Griffith Observatory just east of Hollywood, (currently closed on Mondays and Tuesdays).
I would steer clear of the Fairfax Farmer's Market that week because of the nearby shopping malls making traffic and parking a real mess.
The Laguna Riviera in Laguna Beach is a great place to stay, right on the beach.
Christmas Day traffic will be considered quite light by Southern California standards.
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Old Oct 11th, 2010, 08:56 AM
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I would definitely stay in Santa Monica. I live in the area and enjoy it most at that time of the year. Though there will be traffic and parking will be difficult in SM, you'll be able to avoid it by staying there and walking to shops and restaurants. It's pretty close to both Getty museums.
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Old Oct 11th, 2010, 09:11 AM
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Thanks for your input! We wanted to see the Getty Museum in Brentwood. Is the Getty Villa worth a visit?
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Old Oct 11th, 2010, 09:22 AM
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Yes, the Getty Villa is worth a visit. It is a gorgeous estate, with beautiful views and architecture and gardens. Its collection of antiquities is impressive. I especially loved the art glass collection. How did they preserve glass for 100s of years?? Really special pieces.
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Old Oct 11th, 2010, 01:04 PM
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Is the Getty Villa worth a visit?
It depends on how much time you have and your interests. I prefer the gardens and art at the Getty Center in Brentwood. The Villa is much smaller, it's focus is on antiquities, and the gardens aren't nearly as impressive as the Getty Center's.
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Old Oct 11th, 2010, 02:58 PM
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Thank you so much for your recommendations. We will plan to visit both.
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Old Oct 11th, 2010, 04:16 PM
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Traffic on Christmas Day is very light.

It is true that the pre-holiday traffic is terrible around shopping malls...I don't go near one!! Also expect afternoon/evening traffic (say from 1pm on to about 8pm) to be bad on Thursday and Friday (getaway days).
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