A UCLA Student Guide
When students in the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA need a break from classwork and clinical rotations, they don't have to go far to enjoy themselves. There are plenty of fun things to do near UCLA.
Named one of TripAdvisor's top 25 tourist destinations in the United States, Los Angeles offers mouthwatering cuisine from all over the world, as well as numerous classic Hollywood attractions, famous sports teams, exciting nightlife and breathtaking beaches. Whether you're in the mood to work out, chill out, dress up or eat up, the city is the perfect place to do it. Here are some local hot spots and other popular activities near campus:
1. Soak up the sun
With sunshine and warm weather practically year-round, residents of Southern California always have a reason to go outside. Spend a day at Venice Beach. Take a stroll along the Santa Monica Pier and ride the Ferris wheel over the Pacific Ocean. Hike the interconnecting trails at Will Rogers, Temescal and Topanga parks, or wade in the rock pool at Malibu Creek State Park. Of course, you can spend time in nature without leaving campus as well; The Mildred E. Mathias Botanical Garden is immediately adjacent to the David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA, and on North Campus, the Franklin D. Murphy Sculpture Garden is the perfect place to study, picnic and enjoy the view.
2. Get your brain food
The restaurant choices near campus are as diverse as the city's population. Westwood, West Los Angeles and Korea Town offer a wide variety of Asian eateries — including Noodle Planet, Sushi Gen and Road to Seoul. Santa Monica's Italian food is hard to forget at C&O Trattoria, as are the tacos at El Cholo. Visit West Hollywood for a Persian dinner at Jaipur, or a pancake breakfast at Griddle Café.
3. Get your groove on
After a long day in the classroom or exam room, students sometimes need a night out to unwind. Show off your dance moves at Zanzibar, Boulevard3 or Busby's. Book your tickets for a concert at Staples Center, The Hollywood Bowl or even one of LA's smaller music venues, such as Troubadour in West Hollywood or The Echo in Silver Lake.
4. See the sights
For students who enjoy gazing at stars—whether they're celestial or celebrity—LA is the place to do it. Attend a planetarium show or use one of the telescopes at Griffith Observatory. You may also hit the popular tourist sites in Hollywood, including the Hollywood Walk of Fame, Grauman's Chinese Theatre and the iconic Hollywood Sign. If fine art is more your style, the Getty Center Museum on the hills of the Sepulveda Pass offers a tour through multiple creative time periods.
5. Take me out to the ballgame
Along with the UCLA Bruins, LA is home to two Major League Baseball franchises and two NBA teams, as well as professional soccer and hockey programs. For baseball fans, Dodger Stadium is a particularly memorable way to spend a summer afternoon (UCLA students get discounted tickets).
6. Go for a ride
If you're into roller coasters, movies or both, you'll love LA's theme parks. Disneyland and California Adventure are a one-hour drive from campus. Or, check out the interactive tours and wild rides at Universal Studios Hollywood.
There's a lot to love about LA. Whether you're a California native or new to the West Coast, you can always find some new and interesting things to do near UCLA.