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Safe Central Hotel

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Moncton, Canada
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Safe Central Hotel

I am looking for a place to stay central to my itinerary after reading about the gridlock in LA.

I plan on going to Disneyland, Universal, a day at Santa Monica and would like to explore Hollywood & downtown.

What would be the best form of transportation between these areas. Renting a car isn't out of the question if that would be the best option. The Metro site maps confuse me, is there any map available with all the lines on it?

I've planned several trips in the past but LA is the only one that's intimated me.

Los Angeles
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1. Re: Safe Central Hotel

The best way to understand how to get from "a" to "b" using our public transit system is to use the trip planner located on the right side of the home page at www.metro.net - this will tell you what buses, trains, or subways to use to travel between any two addresses, at any time of day,

Renting a car will be the best form of transportation. You can come and go as you please, won't be restricted by bus & trains schedules, and won't need to be switching buses all the time. Plus it will help you maximize your time, since you'll probably spend less time getting around town this way than with any alternative. Of course, renting a car has expenses - the rental fee itself, gasoline / petrol, and many hotels charge for parking. Also you'll be the one doing the driving, and navigating will be up to you (and possibly your GPS unit)

The alternatives are taxis, but because LA is so very spread out, they are not cheap, and generally you'd spend more on taxis than on renting a car.

And then of course is public transportation. The cost is lower, but transit times will be longer, and you'll have to deal with bus schedules, switching buses, etc. Also, when relying on public transportation, the places you can stay are more restrictive because public transit access in some areas is worse than in others.

Unfortunately, LA is very spread out. Disneyland is not technically in Los Angeles, but rather in Anaheim, and is a 45-60 minute drive south from most parts of LA.

If you don't get a car, I would look to stay in Hollywood, near the intersection of Hollywood Blvd. and Highland Ave. There are several advantages to this location:

First, it is right next to all the big Hollywood sights - the Walk of Fame passes through this intersection, the Chinese Theater, Kodak Theater and Maddam Toussad's are all right here, and you can get a good view of the Hollywood sign here as well.

The second reason is transportation links here. The red line subway stops at this intersection, and you'll be able to use the subway to get to Universal Studios (about a 5 minute ride) and downtown LA (25 minutes or so) and you won't need to deal with traffic at all to reach these places. This is also a big public transit hub in general and so many other parts of the city are relatively easy to reach on public transit from here. Santa Monica, for instance, is about a 1/4 mile walk and one bus ride, or two bus rides away.

Finally, a couple big tour companies, like Star Line Tours, stage their tours here, so you can get some sightseeing in that way with a minimum of fuss.

The main issue here is in getting to Disneyland, and there are a few different ways on public transportation to do this. You can also book transportation from one of the tour companies. Unfortunately all these methods involve either long transit times, or involve arriving at Disneyland after the park opens and/or having to leave Disneyland before the park closes.

Los Angeles
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2. Re: Safe Central Hotel

I forgot, I was going to mention specific hotels near Hollywood / Highland - you didn't mention your budget but hotels in this area span a wide range of prices. From roughly the most to least expensive:

Renaissance Hollywood

Hollywood Roosevelt

Magic Castle Hotel

Holiday Inn Express Walk of Fame

Best Western Hollywood Plaza

Hollywood Heights Hotel

Orchid Suites

Hollywood Celebrity Hotel

Motel 6 on Whitley Ave.

great britain
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3. Re: Safe Central Hotel

We stayed in Orchid suites. very basic but fantastic location, walking distance of the chinese theatre, kodak theatre, walk of fame etc. The metro is soooo easy (we were first timers) to get to universal. It is only 3 mins from accomodation a 5 min train journey and a 5 min walk the other side, just follow the crowds.

There is free parking at Orchid suites so you could drive to santa monica and other sights that are further out.(though i think we paid $15 to park all day at the beach).

Anaheim is do able but after a full day at the park you may be better to stay overnight nearby. we stayed howard johnson...walking distance from disney!

Enjoy

Santa Monica...
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for Los Angeles, Santa Monica, Mammoth Lakes
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4. Re: Safe Central Hotel

Renting a car is the easiest option. You've listed places that are an hour apart from each other, by car. Disney is an hour from LA. Universal is an hour from Santa Monica. Triple that on public transport.

What is your actual budget per night?

Santa Monica, CA
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5. Re: Safe Central Hotel

Although we have lots of traffic, it is not crazy! In fact, most people, when in a traffic jam, are resigned to their fate and are patient while waiting it out. The key for a visitor is to avoid the morning and evening rush hours - 7-9:00 am and 4-7:00 pm. Otherwise, our traffic will be mostly civilized.

The central area would be Hollywood.

Moncton, Canada
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6. Re: Safe Central Hotel

Well thanks for all the useful information. It would be my son and I, he is 14 and was only thinking Disney....just to say we did Disney.

I am sure a closer park with roller coasters would be just be just as good.

We've done Montreal & Toronto the past couple of years and to be honest Subways were part of the fun,,, we're from backwoods Canada aye.

As far as budget per night, I always use priceline and name my own price...I just needed the general vicinity for the parameter for my search. Priceline has never let me down yet.,,, and I have to say, neither has tripadvisor....so Thanks!

West Hollywood...
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7. Re: Safe Central Hotel

Here's the map of all of the metro rail lines but these lines cover only a fraction of the city of Los Angeles and, therefore, an even tinier percentage of the Greater L.A. area (which includes the cities of Santa Monica, Anaheim, etc, etc, etc):

metro.net/riding_metro/…rail_map.pdf

Edited: 22 January 2012, 00:57
Moncton, Canada
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121 posts
75 reviews
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8. Re: Safe Central Hotel

Thank you for that map... it's exactly what I was looking for. I am trying to match it up to the city map which was difficult. What a massive Subway system!

Everyone said I would have to drive to Disney...but doesn't the purple line via to Anaheim? Even still, I likely wouldn't do that as it goes through areas Mr. Google told me to avoid.

Thanks again for the map!

Adelaide
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89 posts
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9. Re: Safe Central Hotel

Good Morning Day Tripper, I was interested in info regarding the place you stayed in LA, orchid suites. Can you tll me a little more about it. my friend and I are 60ish travellers, leaving our husbands in Australia and going for a bit of a look around. We like clean, comfy accommodation but every $$ we don't have to spend on sleeping, we can use for shopping. I like the idea of being so central. How did you get from the Airport to the Hotel? Are there any communal shuttle buses? Do you know if you can prebook them? Any other clues for beginners?

I appreciate any ideas or help. Many thanks, Julia from Australia

Swansea, Australia
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10. Re: Safe Central Hotel

wow, that was great your advice. We are also going for 4 days in March so i now have my itinary all worked out. Thank-you. We were wanting to stay out at Santa Monica though. IS there any thing you would recommend not to miss there? and maybe some nice motels there as well. We are mid 50 and from Australia.