Westwood is a residential and commercial neighborhood in Los Angeles, bordering Beverly Hills on the east. In 1919, the founder of the Broadway and Bullock’s department stores, Arthur Letts, started developing this neighborhood.
Today, the Village is a well-known shopping district featuring many cultural attractions.
UCLA students are probably familiar with them since the college campus is just north of this area.
No matter if you are visiting for the first time or live here and simply need some guidance, we are happy to offer a few recommendations for fun activities.
Most people would say that this iconic building is the symbol of Westwood. It was constructed in the 1930s and evokes memories of a different time. The beautiful white tower with the glistening FOX sing at the top can be seen from miles away.
This theater has been the host of numerous film premiers over the years. You never know when an elegant Hollywood red-carpet premiere will take place at the intersection at Weyburn and Broxton. And when there are no glamorous premieres, you can watch any of the daily projections Fox Theater offers.
The Hammer Museum
If you enjoy visiting museums, you will not want to miss The Hammer. Since it is among the best art museums in LA, you know it can offer something to all kinds of art lovers. Most of the artwork is modern, but you may also see pieces from Degas and Monet in the museum’s permanent collection.
The Hammer also features several interactive exhibitions, lectures, performances, concerts, and screenings. No matter your taste, this museum will help you have a pleasant art-filled day.
If you need further incentive to visit The Hammer, you will be happy to know that admission is free.
The Fowler Museum
While we are on the subject of museums, Westwood has another great one to offer you. The Fowler Museum features contemporary work from many international artists. From musical performances and workshops to exhibits showcasing art from Asia, Africa, and South America, the Fowler Museum is the perfect place for those who enjoy both art and culture.
The museum is located on the UCLA campus and will certainly teach you about various cultures of the world.
Admission is free of charge.
The Franklin D. Murphy Sculpture Garden
UCLA students love spending time in the Murphy Sculpture Garden, and you will too if you enjoy the combination of nature and art.
On the campus, you can find 70 high-quality sculptures. The work featured comes from artists such as Miro, Hans Arp, and Auguste Rodin. The styles are very diverse, and the location makes for a relaxing experience. You can take a self-guided tour or a group tour offered by the Hammer Museum.
If you are currently planning your visit to Westwood, try to be in the neighborhood on Thursday. This would be a great opportunity to check out the Broxton Farmers’ Market. Buy local produce or just take a stroll through the market. Either way, the visit will brighten your day.
There are always several food stands available, such as the popular Mexican street corn, Elote, or Afghan Bolani. A day at the vibrant market will let you taste the true flavor of Westwood Village.
Mildred E. Mathias Botanical Garden
Westwood also has entertainment for nature lovers. You can find the botanical garden on the southeast side of the UCLA campus. Here, you may choose to relax while reading a book or explore thousands of unique specimens. These include the weeping myrtles from Australia or the unique dragon tree from the Canary Islands. Docent-led tours are at your disposal or maps if you prefer to go on an individual tour.
When you are hungry for a snack, make sure to visit Diddy Riese — an iconic Westwood symbol when it comes to food. This old scoop shop is best known for its sweets. Try their freshly baked cookies which come in various flavors — peanut butter, chocolate chip, oatmeal raisin, etc.
For only $2, you may get a large ice cream sandwich. Just keep in mind that Diddy Riese only accepts cash.
Planetarium at UCLA
It might be difficult to see stars in a city, even on a cloudless day. But if you wish to do so, make sure to visit the Planetarium at the UCLA. Besides telescope viewing and planetarium shows, you can attend free lectures every Wednesday.
The Planetarium is located on the Mathematical Science building’s roof in the South Campus region. The view of the campus and Westwood Village is in itself worth the visit.
Pierce Brothers Westwood Village Memorial Park
If you wish to visit some of the greatest icons’ resting places, you can pay respects at the Pierce Brothers Memorial Park. The small peaceful cemetery is the final home of legends such as Marilyn Monroe, Truman Capote, Natalie Wood, Donna Reed, Bob Crane, Jack Lemmon, Dean Martin, Don Knotts, Roy Orbison, Eddie Albert, Frank Zappa, and Eva Gabor.
The UCLA’s grandiose theater has a long history of iconic performances, dating back to the 1930s. These were the times when Duke Ellington, Jimmy Dorsey’s Band, Gershwin, and Schoenberg performed on the theater’s stage.
Since then, Royce Hall has been the host of many artists, including Edgar Meyer, David Sedaris, and Chris Thile. Listen to jazz and enjoy the Romanesque architecture at one of the most stunning places in Westwood.
iPic Theaters Westwood
After a packed day, you might be on the lookout for some evening entertainment.
The iPic Theaters comes highly recommended by the Westwood locals. This modern state-of-the-art building has all the new releases, but its appeal comes from its unique atmosphere.
Relax in a comfortable recliner and enjoy the excellent service. The theater provides blankets, pillows, and a full dining experience. Since Sherry Yard oversees the restaurant, you can be certain that the food and drinks are beyond satisfactory.
The Westwood Village is a culturally rich place that offers many opportunities for entertainment and education, regardless of your age or budget.
No matter if you are here for a day or a month, the neighborhood will keep surprising you. The Village is both up to date with modern culture and keeps the spirit of the past era.
This guarantees that anyone’s time here will be worthwhile.