www.thetravel.com

10 Hidden Gems Only Los Angeles Locals Know About

Los Angeles is home to some of the most fantastic, whimsical, and just downright crazy things (& people) in the country. But that’s exactly what makes Los Angeles so great. The city of angels is positively packed to the brim with new and exciting things to do.

RELATED: Top 10 Prettiest Destination In Los Angeles

Whether visitors are looking to explore the Los Angeles forest or just looking to pick up some of the greatest craft beer hidden in an unlikely spot, there’s an endless number of surprises hidden throughout the streets of Los Angeles. Let’s take a look at some of the places typically try to keep to themselves. So shhh. A don’t send this around to everyone you know in or outside of LA. That’d be awful. Truly.

10 Arroyo Shell Gas Station - Pasadena

Hundreds, maybe thousands, of people pull up to the Shell gas station on the corner of Del Mar and Arroyo Parkway in Pasadena every day. They pull in, they get gas and they drive away. Fools. For if a curious customer should decide to walk in, and that customer should happen to be a fan of some of California’s greatest craft beers, they’ll stumble upon a secret that local beer connoisseurs have been tapping since the owner, Shibli Haddad took over in late 2016. Saying that Haddad is a bit a craft beer fan would be like saying Ash Ketchum is a bit of a Pokemon fan.

So when he took over ownership at the station, the first thing he did was start making friends with some of his favorite local (and not so local) breweries. The station has an expertly curated supply of beers that are constantly rotating (just like the mural inside that's redone by local artists every month). Stop by as soon as you can or you might miss your next favorite beer.

9 The Old Los Angeles Zoo - Griffith Park

Griffith park is filled with so many amazing things to do, there could likely be an article just on that. However, this time around let’s put the focus on the old LA zoo. The zoo was used from 1912 until 1965 when they packed all the animals and moved them to where the LA zoo resides today.

RELATED: 5 Underrated Los Angeles Attractions (5 Overflowing With Tourists)

The abandoned enclosures have been turned into picnic areas and canvases and the hike around the zoo’s backside isn’t so bad either. Any visitors planning to stop by Griffith Park anyway should certainly make time to stop by this juxtaposition of old LA and new LA.

8 Sunken City Trail - San Pedro

While breaking into San Pedro’s Sunken City is technically “illegal” and technically “trespassing”, that hasn’t stopped locals from inviting themselves in to enjoy a little art, a lot of sun, and a misdemeanor or two. See, back in 1929, there was a catastrophic landslide that devasted the houses in the area.

Cut to 2019, locals have been heading out to the sunken city for some harmless fun that may or may not be entirely legal for more than a few years now.

7 Time Travel Mart - Echo Park

While the time travelers may not have shown up at that dinner Stephen Hawking hosted back in 2009, they definitely made a pitstop at the Time Travel Mart in Echo Park (they also have a location in Mar Vista).

RELATED: 10 Things To Do If You Have Only 24 Hours In LA

Visitors can pick up anything from mammoth chunks to dinosaur eggs with clear consciences as The Travel Travel Mart is actually run by 826LA, a non-profit writing and tutoring center. So don’t be afraid to stop by anytime before yesterday (when the time-freezy slushy machine was working) and support a good cause.

6 Soap Plant/ Wacko - Los Feliz

This eclectic shop/ art gallery has been keeping Angelinos curious, confused, laughing, and coming back in for years now. Where else could one find a life-sized Chuckie doll, Rat Fink art on display, and Bob Ross socks all in the same place?

So any weirdos out there that will be around the Los Feliz area definitely need to make a detour and head over. It’s a different experience each and every time it’s visited and customers are guaranteed to find something new every time.

5 Hollywood Forever Cemetery - Hollywood

Hanging out all night in a cemetery may not be everyone’s cup of tea, but at the Hollywood Forever Cemetery visitors are certainly greeted with open arms. See, if guests visit the cemetery at the right time, on the right night, ghosts will appear to answer all questions about the afterlife.

RELATED: 15 Spots In Los Angeles Everyone Wants To Visit (And 5 Hidden Gems)

Totally kidding. Actually, visitors can stop by for anything from late-night movies like Stanely Kubrick’s 2001: A Space Odyssey, to live shows on Dia de Los Muertos. The ghost thing might work, but that probably requires a VIP pass or something like that.

4 Museum Of Death - Hollywood

While the Museum of death does have another location in New Orleans, Louisianna, the Hollywood location is the only place you’ll find these creepy artifacts on this side of the Mississippi.

The museum is filled with information about serial killers, death machines, literal shrunken heads. For any visitors down to clown like John Wayne Gacy or someone just looking for some answers about what happens after humans bite the dust, Hollywood’s Museum of Death is likely a great stop to hit.

3 Laserium - Van Nuys

In a state where cannabis is legal for recreational use, the place with the trippiest lasers is king. Enter: Laserium. These epic laser shows are meant to take viewers through an incredible journey whether it’s through Pink Floyd’s Dark Side Of The Moon or something of their own creation.

But if you haven’t already, definitely check out the Pink Floyd show. They’ve been doing it for a long time now and it’s still amazing each and every time. Cannabis not included.

2 Mosaic Tile House - Venice

What began over twenty years ago as a bit of a fixer-upper, has become a landmark for citizens of Venice. Sheri Pann and her husband Gonzalo Duran have been adding to the ever-changing work of art for a long time now.

It may have originally just been a way to spruce up the house before they turned it into a studio, but since then it has spiraled into possibly their greatest masterpiece. They give private tours of the home by appointment only, so don’t just show up and expect a welcome party.

1 Angeles National Forest (& All Of It’s Secrets)

With all of the fuss over Hollywood, Beverly Hills, and other touristy areas like that, people often forget just how diverse Los Angeles is. While LA may typically be thought of as a distinctly urban area, it also holds some of the most beautiful hikes, views, and forests in the country.

So take a little drive up to Angeles National Forest, get some comfortable shoes, and go visit one of the hidden swimming holes or waterfalls. Just try to get through all the off-the-path secrets that Angelinos have had plenty of time to get acquainted with. Never know what they’ve hidden out there to find.

NEXT: 20 Things To Do When You're In Los Angeles For 24 Hours

More in Travel