21 of the Best Spots for Film Lovers in Los Angeles


As the epicentre of the movie industry, Los Angeles is a film lover’s dream. Not only the home of Hollywood and some of the biggest movie studios in the world, the City of Angels has also served as the backdrop to hundreds of films over the last century and almost acts as a character itself.

Whether it’s studio tours or iconic filming locations, there are sights for film lovers on every corner in Los Angeles, but we’ve picked out just 21 of the best here.

Warner Brothers Studios

What better way to start your visit to LA than with a visit to a real working movie studio? And not just any old studio!

Warner Brothers has been one of the biggest movie studios in the world for almost a hundred years, and on the tour you’ll get to visit backlot street and sets from movies old and new, such as La La Land and Friends, and exhibitions of costumes and props from the Harry Potter and DC Comics franchises.

Griffith Observatory

It’s a bit of a hike up to the top, but Griffith Observatory offers some of the most stunning views of the city, and has been featured in countless films such as James Dean’s Rebel Without a Cause, The Terminator, Transformers and most recently everybody’s favourite love letter to Los Angeles, La La Land.

As well as offering great views, the observatory itself is worthy of mention, with its retro-futuristic design and exhibitions including a Tesla coil.

Hollywood & Highland

This huge shopping and entertainment complex contains not one, but two iconic venues for film buffs.

The first is the TCL Chinese Theatre (better known as Grauman’s Chinese Theatre) which has hosted many premieres through the years and features concrete blocks with the handprints of the stars in its forecourt.

Next door is the Dolby Theatre which has hosted the Oscars ceremony since 2002, where you can view a real Academy Award!

Gamble House

Fans of the 80s classic Back to the Future will instantly recognise this huge house as the 1955 home of Doc Emmett Brown.

The house was built in 1909 for David and Mary Gamble (of Procter & Gamble) as their summer residence, but it now serves as a museum.

Hollywood Forever Cemetery

Many of the stars of Hollywood who have passed away over the years are buried at this special cemetery on Santa Monica Boulevard.

Stars such as Rudolph Valentino, Judy Garland, Johnny Ramone and Mel Blanc have all been laid to rest here, and during the summer they put on outdoor film screenings too.

Cole’s French Dip

One of the oldest restaurants in LA, Cole’s is where Forrest Gump and Lieutenant Dan saw in New Year 1972, and it has also featured in multiple other films such as L.A. Confidential, Se7en and Face/Off.

Not only is it a great movie location, but it also claims to the be the home of the ‘French duo sandwich’, which consists of thinly sliced roast beef on a baguette, and features a hidden speakeasy in the back.

(You may also notice a ramp next to the restaurant which looks familiar too, this was used as the exterior of the film studio where Forrest Gump meets John Lennon. Very efficient use of the space by the filmmakers!)

Egyptian Theater

This spectacular movie palace played host to the city’s first ever movie premiere in 1922 and is known for its lavish Ancient Egypt-inspired interior.

Whether you want to catch a special screening while you’re here, or just marvel at the history of the place, it’s well worth a visit.

Cabo Cantina

It may be small, but this restaurant on Sunset Boulevard it’s sure to catch your eye with its colourful exterior.

You may also recognise it as the spot where Woody Allen proposed to Diane Keaton over a plate of alfalfa sprouts and mashed yeast in the 1977 film Annie Hall.

The building actually has a very interesting history, originally being one of the country’s first organic health food restaurants, frequented by celebs and owned by the leader of a cult, who sold up and headed to Hawaii when he thought the apocalypse was upon us!

Hollywood Walk of Fame

The world famous Hollywood Walk of Fame extends along 15 blocks of Hollywood Boulevard, featuring the stars of over 2,600 personalities from the worlds of movies, films and music.

Point Fermin Lighthouse

This beautiful Victorian lighthouse has great views over the Pacific Ocean, right at the southern tip of the city.

It’s also been featured in a number of movies throughout the year, such as Gods and Monsters, Pearl Harbour, Face/Off and The Usual Suspects, and it’s where Jack Nicholson discovers what happened to the missing reservoir water in Chinatown.

Los Angeles County Arboretum & Botanic Garden

This huge city park is found out to the east of Downtown LA and has been used for many films such as Tarzan the Ape Man and Notorious by Alfred Hitchcock.

You may particularly recognise the Queen Anne Cottage, which was the home of Dustin Hoffman and Barbra Streisand in Meet the Fockers.

StarLine Tours

One of the most famous activities for movie lovers in Los Angeles is to take a tour of the homes of the stars, such as those offered by StarLine tours.

Their tours are a great insight into how the other half live, and take in the homes of multiple celebs in the Hollywood and Beverly Hills areas, including Halle Berry, Sandra Bullock, Tom Cruise, Al Pacino and more.

RMS Queen Mary

The Queen Mary ocean liner sailed across the North Atlantic for just over 30 years, until 1967, since when it has remained docked in Long Beach.

It’s featured in many films in the years since, such as Pearl Harbour, L.A. Confidential, Chaplin, Batman Forever and The Aviator, but perhaps most notably it stood in for the doomed ship in The Poseidon Adventure.

Paramount Pictures Studio Tour

Another fantastic studio tour experience, the Paramount Picture studio is where such classics as Gladiator, Braveheart, Star Trek and Titanic have been shot.

The tour gives you a real insider’s view of over 100 years of filmmaking, taking in the proper warehouse, soundstages and backlot.

The Hollywood Heritage Museum

Just over the road from the famous Hollywood Bowl, you’ll find this museum which celebrates the early years of Hollywood and the silent era of filmmaking.

It’s found in the Lasky-DeMille Barn, which was one of the first ever movie studios in Hollywood and is a real treasure trove of props, photos and memorabilia to uncover for the silent movie buffs.

Margaret Herrick Library

This library is maintained by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences and is a real treasure trove for film lovers.

Whether it’s scripts, props, posters, or wardrobe test shoots, there are artefacts from classic movies from throughout history.

The Culver Studios Mansion

While you can’t actually visit the inside of this working film studio, it’s definitely worth a visit for fans of the 1939 classic Gone with the Wind.

This is because the huge 15,000 square foot Colonial-style building was used as the entrance to the home of Rhett Butler and Scarlett O’Hara in the movie.

The impressive building was modelled after George Washington’s Mount Vernon home and is still clearly visible from Washington Boulevard.

Paramount Ranch

Many of the ranches that were created purely to shoot Western movies are still standing today, such as the Paramount Ranch out in the Santa Monica Mountains.

Countless movies have been shot at the ranch since it was purchased by Paramount in 1927, making it a real who’s who of the Western genre and a must visit for fans.

Beverly Center

Not only is it a great place to spot some movie stars doing a bit of shopping, but the nine-story Beverly Center shopping mall has also made numerous big screen appearances itself.

The huge center is home to over a hundred high-end retailers such as Louis Vuitton and Burberry and has featured in movies such as L.A. Story, Volcano, and Scenes from a Mall.

Getty Center

The Getty Center is primarily known for its architecture, expansive gardens and breath-taking views over the city, but it also holds extra significance for fans of the Star Trek franchise.

In the 2013 sequel Star Trek into Darkness, the center was used to double up at Starfleet HQ. Obviously, some CGI was used to enhance the center (and make it appear as though it’s in San Francisco, not Los Angeles!) but it’s surprisingly recognisable in the movie.

Westfield Culver City

This huge shopping mall was initially known as Fox Hills Malls and was known for its iconic red glass and steel staircase which rose up through its three floors.

Throughout the years it’s been visited by Sarah Jessica Parker in Girls Just Want to Have Fun, was the location of a car chase in Point Break and even saw Emilio Estevez battle a video game which came to life in the horror movie Nightmares.

More recently you may also have seen it in movies such as Superbad and Southland.