Let’s be honest: it’s summer almost all year in LA. But we’ll argue that it’s not the same as the real thing, and there aren’t nearly as many great outdoor activities going on. While we love the beach, we’ve avoided the obvious and left it off our list. Here are 11 of asterRIDE’s favorite outdoor activities in Los Angeles during the summer.
- Muscle up.
Who needs a trainer when you have a series of completely free circuit training parks scattered all over the city? Get in a great workout stair-stepping, swinging on monkey bars, climbing ropes and more. If you’re intimidated by the beach gymnasts and body builders at Muscle Beach, take advantage of the ample parking at Clover Park instead.
- See the stars.
Not the Justin Bieber kind. The universe puts on a star-studded display you can see almost any night for free from the Griffith Observatory. Search for the Big Dipper through one of the public telescopes, or make friends with a regular who can point you in the direction of Orion’s Belt. The park is open every night except Monday until 10 p.m.
- Watch a flick among the dead.
The activity that seems completely bizarre to out-of-towners has become quite the cult favorite among Angelenos. Cinespia’s Cemetery Films series brings the nostalgia of a drive-in movie to a place usually reserved for burials and paying your respects. See classic movies like The Goonies and Top Gun all summer long in the cemetery where the likes of Mickey Rooney and Rudolph Valentino are laid to rest. Tickets are $25 and must be purchased in advance. You can also book your ride there in advance using asterRIDE. Our driver won’t ask why you’re being picked up from a cemetery, late at night…
- Take in some tunes.
One of the coolest outdoor entertainment venues in the country is right in our backyard. The Hollywood Bowl is the home stage of the Los Angeles Philharmonic, which regularly puts on sunset concerts. If you prefer popular music over the classics, Basement Jaxx, David Gray and Harry Connick Jr. are all on this summer’s lineup as well.
- Get down in Chinatown.
Equal parts food truck festival and flea market, Chinatown Summer Nights are an event every Angeleno should experience. Once you’ve had your fill of delicious street food, check out work from talented local artists and listen to local bands jam out on outdoor stages. It’s held one night each month from June-August and there’s no admission charge.
- See a Grunion Run.
This is just one of those weird LA things you’ve got to see for yourself. The “amazing Grunion” is a type of fish that literally strands itself onshore in order to spawn, and it happens multiple times each summer. Crowds gather to see the spectacle at Cabrillo Beach; if you have a fishing license, you can even grab a few for dinner. Check the Department of Fish and Wildlife website for expected Grunion Runs this season.
- Get away for the weekend.
Where to: Portland, Seattle, maybe Vegas? All of them are a quick direct flight from LA, perfect for a quick weekend away from the hustle, bustle and traffic. No need to spend a fortune on airport parking; asterRIDE can drop off and pick up at both Bob Hope Airport and LAX.
- Pedal to the metal.
…in a pedal boat, that is. Take a paddling trip around the newly renovated Echo Park Lake to see the lotus blooms amid a backdrop of skyscrapers. Or, hire a Gondola and let a guide do the paddling for you. Rent a pedal boat from the concession stand for $10 per adult seven days a week.
- Take a hike.
Malibu is home to one of Southern California’s largest waterfalls, accessible via a four-mile round trip hike through the Santa Monica Mountains. Escondido Falls is a two-tiered waterfall ambitious visitors can trek to via a trailhead off Pacific Coast Highway. Wear sturdy shoes—they’ll likely get wet—and be prepared for a bit of a steep climb to reach the impressive Upper Escondido portion of the falls. Want a more low-key hike? Stop at the first falls, the Lower Escondido, which are smaller but equally beautiful.
- Wine down.
Bring a blanket, a picnic basket and your sunglasses (it gets bright out there!) for sunset wine tastings at Barnsdall Park. Every Friday, sip a sampling of four artisanal vinos from all over the world in a limited edition wine glass. New this year, take a guided tour of the adjacent Hollyhock House, a historic home designed by Frank Lloyd Wright. Tickets to the tasting are $30 and can be purchased online. Make an evening of it and book a group ride or limousine to get your friends there and back safely.
- Cheer on the home team.
If the major leagues are out of your price range, Los Angeles’ minor league games are much cheaper and just as much fun. Tickets to Los Angeles Quakes games can be had for under $10, leaving more cash for the good stuff: hot dogs and cold beer.
What are your favorite summer activities in LA? However you enjoy spending your summer, asterRIDE wants to be your safe, reliable ride provider. Download our free ride-hailing app and use code LAC20 to save $20 on your first ride with us. See you soon!