20 Daytime Date Ideas If You’re Living In Los Angeles
Who made it a rule that dates should primarily be conducted in the nighttime? Although they’re arguably just as fun (if not more so) than evening dates, day dates have historically gotten the short-shafted. Even though day time activities are cheaper and less crowded than their nighttime counterparts, it seems that people have made going out at night a habit.
Well, we’re here to change that tradition. In a beautiful, beach-adjacent city like Los Angeles that boasts 284 sunny days out of the year, we think it’s time that Angelenos take advantage of their wonderful weather and make day-time dating great again. In light of this, we’ve compiled 20 amazing day-date ideas for people living in Los Angeles. Take a look below!
1. Santa Monica Pier@santamonicapier/Instagram
You can’t beat the Santa Monica Pier for a fun, romantic, and Instagram-able daytime date. There are countless activities fit to entertain even the ficklest date–hop on the Ferris wheel, stroll the boardwalk, grab snacks from nearby vendors, or dip your toes in the ocean. If the date goes really well, you can even watch the sunset over the ocean together before heading home.
2. Griffith Observatory@whoismikehuang/Instagram
A fixture in famous movies such as La La Land and Rebel Without a Cause, the Griffith Observatory is as much a part of Los Angeles as the Hollywood Sign. It’s also one of the best (and most) romantic spots you can head with your partner–especially during the daytime. Both a look-out point for a perfect LA panorama view and a world-class planetarium, The Griffith makes for quality ingredients in the recipe for a perfect date and it’s easy on your wallet. So, not only is it educational, adventurous, and romantic, but it’s completely free.
3. Hiking Runyon Canyon@runyoncanyon/Instagram
Although Runyon Canyon has developed a local status of being an Instagram-trap, it still is one of the most scenic, hike-able, and centrally-located trails in Los Angeles. If you and your partner are the outdoorsy type, then this Hollywood Hills hiking scene is the perfect location for you both to get your endorphin fix while also engaging in celebrity-watching. That’s right–in addition to being Angelenos favorite hiking destination, it’s also a major destination for exercise-loving celebs.
4. Olvera Street@wander.with_.mary_/Instagram
The tree-shaded, pedestrian mall marketplace with craft shops, restaurants, and roving troubadours is a popular tourist destination. The street has been described as a “Top Five” in the “Great Streets of America” journal. About the nostalgic, yet timeless vibes Olvera Street offers, Yelp user Tiffany D. writes: “You feel like you were taken into another time and land walking through Olvera street. The music, smells, the people, and the vibes are just so worth the visit”. Not to mention, the Mexican food is to die for. But before you head over, make sure your phone is fully charged. You’re going to be taking plenty of pictures!
5. Malibu Wine Safari@malibusafaris/Instagram
If you’re comfortable enough with your date to engage in some good ol’ fashioned day drinking, then give Malibu Wine Safaris a try. As Yelp user Evette R. stated: “This place is such a hidden gem in the hills of Malibu. The outside ambiance is so darling…Especially with all the adorable animals. If you’re looking for a fun, outdoor activity while enjoying the beautiful surroundings, then this is it!”. Be sure to book your tour in advance, though–reservations fill up quickly.
6. Smorgasburg Market@smorgasburgla/Instagram
There’s arguably no better date spot for LA foodies than the weekly Smorgasburg Market held on Sundays in Downtown LA. This weekly event boasts vendors from countless popular LA eateries and the food is affordable and always photogenic.
7. Air Hollywood Studios/ The Panam Experience@sarahelizabethdallas/Instagram
For the couples who love DVD extras and lives off of “behind the scenes” movie trivia, Air Hollywood studios are the perfect choice for a daytime date. Air Hollywood has been the filming location for famous movies such as “Airplane” and “Bridesmaids”. And if you want to go a step further for daytime fun, opt to try out the “Panam Experience”, a “is a weekly retro-themed event” where guests are “sent back in time and fully immersed in the world of 1970s Pan Am”. As Yelp user Sage E. raves: “I was transported back in time to a world from the ’70s…Everyone on that ‘flight’ was flying high and having a ball”.
8. Underground LA tourCartwheel Art Tours/Facebook
Did you know that downtown LA has tunnels snaking below its grounds? For those couples who are a little more adventurous, “Beneath the hustle and bustle of Downtown Los Angeles, there are secret underground tunnels and speakeasies! Some of these locations are still accessible, but they are closed to the public, so the only way to see this piece of Los Angeles history is to book a Cartwheel Art Tour. In addition to going underground, they also offer tours about art, architecture, history and various L.A. neighborhood experiences.”
9. Art Classes at LACMA@roslynschoolofpainting/Instagram
If you and your boo aren’t exactly the “outdoorsy” types, a great alternative to strenuous activities like hiking and street fairs is a one-day art workshop at Los Angeles County Museum of Art, more lovingly known as LACMA. The workshop starts off with an exploration of an art piece from LACMA’s collection and then continues onto the art studio. It’s there that you’ll enjoy “art, wine, creativity, and friendship” among kindred spirits. This is another activity that might have to be reserved for a more special occasion, as tickets are $45 for LACMA members and $55 for the general public.
Save some serious coin by snagging some matinee tickets for the renowned Hollywood Pantages Theater. The Pantages Theater rivals Broadway with its blockbuster musicals and celebrity headliners. The theater has boasted shows such as “Hamilton” and “Aladdin” on it marquee and is currently playing “Wicked”. After catching a show during the day, you have all night to stroll Hollywood Boulevard and grab a post-show drink or entree.
11. Dog Cafe@thepearlonwilshire/Instagram
If you’re the type of person who prefaces a date with “Must love dogs”, then The Dog Cafe in Silverlake might be the perfect daytime date spot for you and your partner. For $15 you get to hang out with dogs up for adoption while drinking coffee and eating snacks. It’s become a local favorite, with Angelenos such as Yelp user Jessica G. saying: “As a huge dog lover + coffee lover, there is no more perfect place in the world…If you love dogs, especially if you are looking to adopt one, The Dog Cafe has got to be your first stop…You get to play with dogs and The Dog Cafe gets to continue helping these dogs find a new home. It’s all a win-win!”
12. Little Tokyo@tmooredaj/Instagram
Little Tokyo is one of those highly-walkable, visually stunning, and underrated pieces of LA culture on par with more popular destinations like The Grove. Walk through the unchanging Japanese Village Plaza, browse the Bunkado gift shop, or visit one of the myriads of delicious Japanese restaurants lining its streets. Be sure to keep your eye out for the James Irvine Japanese Garden as well–a free-to-enter “hidden gem” or LA that’s open to the public all year round.
13. Huntington Library and Gardens@thehuntingtonlibrary/Instagram
The historic Huntington has all the bells and whistles a culture-junkie lives for: it is a world class garden, a scholarly library and legitimate art museum. There is so much to see at The Huntington–located at ___–it would take a full day (or more) to truly see everything. And if you and your date are feeling hungry after walking and browsing all day, Huntington management has recently added new restaurants on site. Although usually, tickets to The Huntington will run you $29, they also have a monthly free day (details here). Be sure to book in advance, though–registration fills up fast!
14. Dodger’s Game@dodgers/Instagram
There’s arguably no better way to pass the day than with a hot dog, a cold beer, and rooting for your home team. Arguably the gold-standard of daytime dates, heading to Dodgers stadium with your forge deeper bonds–whether the Blue Crew wins or loses. If you’re an avid baseball fan, why not invest in season tickets to get more bang for your buck.
15. Museum Hopping@sea.pear_/Instagram
If you’re short on cash but rich with curiosity, take your date museum-hopping in LA–a surefire way to impress your date with your cultural knowledge and creativity. Some low-cost options are LACMA, where admission is free after 3 pm for Los Angeles County residents, or The Getty, which is always free but charges $15 for parking. Contemporary Art Museum “The Broad” is another great free option, but be sure to get there early (doors open at11 amm on weekdays and10 amm on weekends) to avoid the line. If, like many Angelenos, you’re a museum junkie, check out a list of LA’s museums and make it a goal for you and your date to hit as many of them as you can!
16. The Last Bookstore@aidannealpress/Instagram
If you and your date share a bond over your love of books, The Last Bookstore should be next on your to-do list. This LA staple is a location that should be on the bucket list of every Angeleno worth their salt. Located in Downtown Los Angeles, this old-school bookstore’s motto is to “keep the paper and ink book business alive in an era of e-readers and digital downloads”. Founded in 2005, The Last Bookstore’s claim to fame is being California’s “largest used and new book and record store”. You may have already seen glimpses of its sculptural book displays and towering shelves on your Instagram feed. However, if you want to avoid crowds of tourists taking pictures, avoid this popular spot on the weekends.
17. Angeles National Forest@pilotclaw/Instagram
If you want to take connecting with nature to another level (there’s only so much hiking one can handle), why not get away from the hustle and bustle of the city and head out to a national park? Angeles National Forest is only a 30-minute drive away from the city and has some easy hiking trails along scenic creeks and waterfalls. After all, there’s no stronger aphrodisiac than fresh air.
18. Sunset Ranch Hollywood Stables@sunsetranchhollywood/Instagram
If the idea of a knight in shining armor riding on horseback gets you all hot and heavy, then we definitely recommend a horseback riding date through Sunset Ranch Hollywood. This horse-back tour leads you through stunning Beachwood Canyon and up through the hills by the Hollywood sign. And luckily, the horseback “Day Tour” is the cheapest option, with a one-hour tour costing $50 and a two-hour session only running you $75. Yelp reviewers rave that this place is “absolutely breathtaking” and “better than I could have ever expected”.
It may seem like a cliche, but LA brunch is popular for a reason! With an endless selection of bottomless mimosa brunches that is just a click away, why booze at night with your partner when doing so in the morning is so much more fun? Among the top-rated brunch spots in LA, head to Barbrix in Silverlake for $8 bottomless mimosas and delicious food, the Dominique Ansel Bakery in The Grove for a variety-filled dimsum brunch (including cronuts!), or one of the many Blu Jam Cafes across the LA Metro area for a trendy, solid brunch option. For brunch in LA, the possibilities are nearly endless.
20. Picnic at Will Rogers House@willrogersranch/Instagram
Will Rogers was a famous American cowboy and actor from the Golden Age of Hollywood. His 186-acre ranch and 31-room mansion are located in the Pacific Palisades and were made into a public park after his death. Now, the grounds are a tribute to the beloved American icon and a place for the public to relax while enjoy the California sun. A great and inexpensive daytime date idea is to plan a picnic at Will Rogers house. Score extra points with your date by gathering a delicious selection of hors d’oeuvres and chilled rose in your picnic basket and relax on the freshly-mowed lawn while watching a polo game.
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