Best Photo Spots in Los Angeles: An Ultimate Instagram Guide
Looking for the best photo spots in Los Angeles? Then you’ve come to the right place! Los Angeles, better known as The City of Angels, has palm tree-lined streets, stunning beaches, a bustling city, and oozes with glitz and glamour. Furthermore, the sun shines more than 300 days out of the year, and there’s a high probability of running into a celebrity.
It’s basically a paradise for everyone that visits and there are tons of Instagrammable places around the city. Below I’m going to outline 20 of the Best Photo Spots in Los Angeles so your trip can be picture-perfect!
Did you know over 38 movies were filmed at the Griffith Observatory? Arguably the most famous ones are “Rebel Without a Cause” and one of my personal favorites – “La La Land”. The Griffith Observatory has an extensive array of space and science displays but the views from the top take the cake! You’ll be looking over all of Los Angeles and the iconic Hollywood sign.
FUN FACT: more people have looked through the Griffith Observatory telescope than any in the world.
PRO TIP: Sunset views from here are amazing but it’s also the busiest time to visit. If you want a quiet experience, I would suggest visiting for sunrise!
Address: 2800 E Observatory Rd, Los Angeles, CA 90027
High-class at its finest! Rodeo Drive is the most iconic street in America. It spans three blocks and is known for its glamorous and extravagant atmosphere, making it a popular destination for celebrities, tourists, and fashion enthusiasts.
There are quite a few spots that are great for taking photos on Rodeo Drive. I particularly love the charming street towards the end of Rodeo (pictured above) and the famous Beverly Wilshire Hotel where Pretty Woman was filmed (Big mistake, HUGE!).
Address: Rodeo Drive, Los Angeles, CA
Beverly Hills Hotel
The Beverly Hills Hotel is the oldest part of Beverly Hills. It was built in 1912 before the entire city was even developed. Picture old-school Hollywood glam at its prime. That’s what it’s like visiting the Beverly Hills Hotel. Not to mention the beautiful pink and green decor that is so on-trend right now (The BHH coined this trend).
Since the hotel is so iconic, it’s expensive to stay the night but you can have lunch by the pool or dinner at the X. Which is still expensive but you have the opportunity to run into a celebrity. The last time I visited I waited at the hotel valet with Robert Pattinson himself. Of course, I froze and didn’t say a word but that is the caliber of celebrities that frequent the hotel. Finally, if you only want to take photos you can park your car down the street, walk into this driveway, and snap a few pics.
Address: 9641 Sunset Blvd, Beverly Hills, CA 90210
Santa Monica Pier
There is a little something for everyone at the Santa Monica Pier – rides, games, delicious fried food, and photo angles that will really make your pictures pop. My favorite spot on the pier to take photos has to be Pier Burger. As you can see pictured above, it’s pretty darn photogenic. Be sure not to miss a ride on the Ferris Wheel for a birds-eye view of Santa Monica beach!
Address: 200 Santa Monica Pier, Santa Monica, CA 90401
Cute storefronts GALORE! Melrose Place is known for high-end shops and their exteriors sure don’t disappoint. My favorites were Loveshack Fancy, Isabel Marant, and Balmain Paris. Along with that, you can check out Alfred Coffee for one of the best spots to get your cup of joe in Los Angeles. Prepare to wait longer than usual as this spot is very famous.
Address: Melrose Place, Los Angeles, CA, 90069
Greystone Mansion, also known as the Doheny Mansion, is a historic estate located in Beverly Hills, California. It is one of the most iconic and recognizable mansions in the area, known for its stunning architecture, rich history, and use in various films, TV shows, and events. It features a combination of architectural styles. including Tudor Revival and English Gothic Revival.
The mansion is renowned for its grandeur, with elaborate detailing, spacious interiors, and beautiful gardens surrounding the estate. It totally reminded me of a villa in Italy. With that being said, they are VERY strict here with photography. So it’s best if you just bring your phone and leave your professional camera at home.
The Malibu Pier is the perfect spot to check out for a bite to eat or for a relaxing stop by the ocean. To the right of the pier is the cutest store that has this bench and pink and white umbrellas. Not only that, but you’ll need to check out Malibu Farm for the best brunch and delicious smoothies!
Address: 23000 CA-1, Malibu, CA 90265
Urban Light exhibit at LACMA
This beautiful exhibit located at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art is made up of 202 vintage lamps from the 1920s and ’30s is absolutely one of the most Instagrammable spots in LA! The best part about it is you can go day or night and the pictures will be incredible. The lights go on every day at dusk and turn off every day at dawn so they are on all night if you’re up for the no-people challenge. Also in this area is the Walt Disney Concert Hall which is another great spot to take photos!
TIP: You don’t have to pay to see the exhibit but parking around the area is metered parking
Address: 5905 Wilshire Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90036
Venice Beach + Venice Canals
Easily one of my favorite locations in all of Los Angeles is Venice. When you walk through the Venice canals you don’t feel like you’re in Los Angeles at all. It’s so quiet and serene and the homes are so charming. Whenever I visit there are very few people around and it’s nice to get lost in the charming walkways and bridges.
Along with that, Venice Beach is one of the most famous beaches in America with its never-ending street performers. It attracts all kinds of people and is a great place to immerse yourself in the Los Angeles culture for a bit. Finally, do not miss out on Abbot Kinney Blvd my favorite street in all of Venice.
Address: Venice Canal District, CA 90292
Canon Drive, Beverly Hills
If you’re looking for a quintessential palm tree-lined street in Los Angeles, look no further and head to Canon Drive. This street has the prettiest palm trees and is located in Beverly Hills. The cross streets are Canon Drive and Carmelita Ave. Finally, this is a pretty high-traffic street so be aware of cars!
Walt Disney Concert Hall
The concert hall was designed by architect Frank Gehry and completed in 2003. It is known for its striking and unique design, characterized by its curving, metallic exterior that reflects light and creates an organic, sculptural appearance. The hall’s design challenges traditional notions of architectural form and has become an iconic symbol of Los Angeles.
The park surrounding the building is free to visit and is open during the day. You can also see a concert or performance here if you would like to view the inside (the outside is much more photogenic). Furthermore, you will most likely have to pay for parking in this area.
Hollywood Sign, Los Angeles
Did you know the original Hollywood sign said Hollywoodland? I do wish it still said that today! One of the best views of the Hollywood sign with minimal effort is from Lake Hollywood Park. It’s easy to find parking and it’s the perfect spot for an LA picnic.
For another view of the sign, consider the Griffith Park Hiking trails. There are multiple hiking trails on Mount Hollywood that have great views. Finally, the most popular hike is a 3-mile loop located on Vermont Canyon Road. It takes about an hour and a half to hike it and there is a large fence around the sign so be prepared for that!
The Spadena House
Legend has it, The Spadena House was built for the movie Hansel & Gretel back in the day and then was transported from the movie lot to Beverly Hills. I’m not sure if that holds true but regardless, this spot is a must-see! Especially if you’re like me and are obsessed with Halloween. It’s located right in Beverly Hills near the Beverly Hills Hotel so you can check both of these out on the same trip!
Address: 516 Walden Dr, Beverly Hills, CA 90210
Santa Monica Proper Hotel
This new and noteworthy luxury hotel located in Santa Monica is an interior designer’s dream. The interior has this beachy boho cool-girl vibe and is hands down the coolest hotel I’ve ever visited. They are pretty strict about letting you go inside unless you are staying at the hotel or grabbing lunch/dinner at Palma (an in-house restaurant). I highly recommend having dinner and getting the grilled peach flatbread.
Address: 700 Wilshire Blvd, Santa Monica, CA 90401
The Getty Villa
Visiting the Getty Villa Museum will have you feeling as though you were transported to Italy but in actuality, it’s located in the Pacific Palisades. J. Paul Getty was a self-made billionaire who fell in love with ancient villa ruins in Italy. So he designed and constructed this Villa to mirror that one. It’s free to enter but costs $20 to park on the grounds. It’s a hidden gem in Malibu!
Address: 17985 Pacific Coast Highway, Pacific Palisades, California
El Matador State Beach
If you’re looking for the most photogenic beach in Los Angeles, then look no further because your girl found it! El Matador State Beach is a local icon and boasts the prettiest views in Malibu. Not only that, but you may recognize this beach from famous movies being shot here. Most notably, the opening scene of Grease. It costs $8 to park here in order to access the beach since it is a state park. Finally, sunset is known to be the best time to visit!
Address: 32350 Pacific Coast Hwy, Malibu, CA 90265
Ok technically, Disneyland is in Orange County but I couldn’t pass up the opportunity to add the happiest place on earth to my list. I highly recommend going on a weekday during the school year. I’ve found the best time to go is the week after school starts, it may be peak prices, however, the lines are non-existent and you’ll be able to enjoy the rides at your leisure.
Make sure to check out Star Wars: Galaxy’s Edge. It’s so incredible! The attention to detail will make you feel as though you’re on a movie set. PRO TIP: They have a single rider line for the Millenium Falcon (pictured above). So you can skip the long line as long as you don’t mind not riding with your party.
Address: 1313 Disneyland Dr, Anaheim, CA 92802
Thanks for reading my “20 of The Best Photo Spots in Los Angeles” Is there anything that I missed that I need to check out? Please let me know and don’t forget to check out more of my California Guides!
Finally, if you’re looking for more Los Angeles Recommendations don’t miss my Ultimate 3 Days in Los Angeles Itinerary.