Asian Sites and Culture in Los Angeles
Los Angeles is famous for its vibrant Asian culture. From authentic Thai and Vietnamese cuisine to Japanese sushi and Korean BBQ, the city's restaurants are bursting with Asian flavors. Other Asian influences are prevalent throughout the city, from the architecture to fashion. If you're looking to explore L.A.'s Asian culture, here are the best places to visit.
Located in the LA Historic Park, Chinatown is a touristy area with great restaurants, authentic dim sum, and small family-owned shops that sell souvenirs and trinkets. The neighborhood is filled with Chinese art and culture, from the famous Chinatown Gateway Monument to the many lanterns and street art. Whether you're a foodie looking for a taste of authentic Chinese cuisine, or a culture lover who wants to surround yourself with diversity, this neighborhood is a must-see in Los Angeles.
Japanese American National Museum
With a goal to preserve and showcase the culture and history of Japanese Americans, this museum is located near downtown L.A. in Little Tokyo. Many of the exhibits are dedicated to Japanese immigration, the internment during WW2, and various artwork from historical and current artists in the community. An admission is normally charged, but it's free on Thursdays.
369 East 1st Street, Little Tokyo, LA, California, 90013
Korean Bell of Friendship (and Point Fermin Park)
The Korean Bell of Friendship was a goodwill gift from South Korea in 1976. It's paint is beginning to show its age, but this spot offers a picturesque setting with an ornately painted structure and views over the Pacific.
3601 S Gaffey St, San Pedro, CA, 90731
Koreatown is a close knit community that is home to the largest Korean population outside of Korea. The neighborhood has a number of great restaurants, dive bars, and karaoke. Whether you're looking for Korean BBQ, ramen, or even sushi, there are a number of options available here. This neighborhood is filled with personality from it's dynamic population to it's buzzing live music scene.
Lake Balboa is a beautiful, family-friendly park where you can enjoy exploring the lake on a swan boat or seeing the cherry blossoms in bloom during the spring season. There are also a number of peaceful picnic areas in the park or places where visitors can exercise in a beautiful setting. Crowds can get busy during the cherry blossom season, but you can often find a hidden area away from the biggest crowds. There's also the beautiful Sepulveda Basin Wildlife Reserve and the Japanese Garden, which is nicely landscaped and makes a perfect retreat from the city.
Little Tokyo Historic District
Located in downtown L.A., this is the largest official Japantown in the U.S. and was declared as a National Historic Landmark District in '95. It's commonly referred to as Little Tokyo, and offers plenty of activities. Visitors can go shopping or enjoy various Japanese restaurants. There are also a number of art galleries including the Union Center for the Arts which focuses on both visual and performance art. Also, don't miss the James Irvine Japanese Garden, the Kyoto Gardens on top of the Double Tree, the Japanese American National Museum, or the Koban Center. And go shopping at the Japanese Village Plaza and the Galleria.
LA, California, 90012
How much does it cost?
Prices for activities, things to do, and tours range from $35 to $55. The average cost for a tour or tickets is $45. A few of the best options are below.
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