Cheap Things to do in Downtown L.A. and Little Tokyo

Theodora Helgason ’22
Staff Writer

We are so lucky to be close to one of the biggest American cities, yet Claremont can also feel so far. L.A. is a $10.00 round trip train ticket or a 50-minute drive away. While at L.A. Union Station, take dazzlings pictures at golden hour.

Get the most bang for your buck by taking advantage of the resources of L.A. A lot of the city’s features are expensive, but if you know where to go, the city becomes a lot more student-friendly.

Downtown Los Angeles

  • Go gallery hopping. One of the first times I went to L.A. I stopped at a gallery my dad was doing work with, Hauser & Wirth, and was impressed with the art show by all female artists they had curated.
  • Explore some older architecture and take advantage of being in a city and gaze at the buildings that are more than three stories tall. The Bradbury Building is beautiful and a perfect place for a mini photo shoot. The intricate iron design inside is the perfect backdrop for a photo with friends.
  • Go to a bookstore. The Last Bookstore is a great place to spend a couple of hours with friends or in the company of books.
    Head to the Broad. You can get free tickets with a reservation.
  • Go to the MOCA Grand Ave. and The Geffen Contemporary at MOCA. It’s free Thursdays 5 – 8 p.m.
    Check out The Institute of Contemporary Art. Tickets are free.

Little Tokyo

  • Make a wish on the wishing tree.
  • Go thrifting and try on fun glasses at a thrift store.
  • Get boba! I recommend the QQ passionfruit green tea from the Gong Cha that is located in Little Tokyo.
  • Stop at Kinokuniya, a Japanese bookstore chain that has a variety of books in both Japanese and English. The store also has lots of pens that are fun to try out even if you don’t end up buying anything.
  • Window shop in #aesthetic stores. Poketo is a great place to stop for design inspiration. The metallics and pastels of the store serve as great inspiration for dorm decor.
  • Bring your greenbox to Grand Park and have a picnic with friends outside.
  • Explore L.A.’s City Hall and admire the view from the observation deck.
  • Take photos of your friends (for social media or for your dorm!) Or stop at Bae and take trendy photos of your ice cream. They have vegan options!