2 Girls. 1 World. A Whole Lot to See


Three Hours to Kill in L.A.

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A few weeks ago I had a chance to travel to Los Angeles for business. I was only there for 3 days and my schedule was tight but I found myself with a few hours before a red eye home and I just HAD to do something.

My first thought was to hop in a cab and go to the Hollywood sign. I knew there was a way to hike to the top and I thought it would give me a great view of the city. So I asked the woman working the front desk of my hotel if she thought it was possible to get there, hike and get back within 3 hours.

She just looked at me and said, “Ummm, no.

“But,” she said, “there’s a trail in walking distance from here that will give you a beautiful view of the city.”

Even better, I thought, and off I went.

The park she was referring to is called Runyon Canyon.

Runyon Canyon Park

 It took me about 10 minutes to walk from my hotel on Hollywood Boulevard.

Map to Runyon Park

It was an interesting walk. At first just a typical stroll in the city but when I made the right on Fuller Avenue it was a steep incline and before I knew it I was in the “country.”

Runyon Canyon Park trail

The trail was wide and wound up the hill.


As I walked up, I got a glimpse of the view.


I had the biggest smile on my face when I saw this from the clearing. I’m slightly obsessed with observation decks and towers and it was that moment I realized I was basically climbing L.A.’s “Observation Deck.” Well, at least one of them.

After the clearing, the trail narrowed and went from dirt to steep steps.

steps on trail

As I climbed I realized dusk was upon me.  I was about to get a nighttime view of the city and I couldn’t have been more excited.

I turned around on my ascend and snapped again. The view was breathtaking.

view from Runyon

I made it to the highest clearing and was just awed.

Runyon Canyon Park View

It was at this time I cursed not having my “real” camera with me as my phone just doesn’t do well in low light situations.

It didn’t matter though, I just sat there and enjoyed the view. It was peaceful and I was alone besides a random runner or small group hiking through.

Roni at Runyon Canyon Park

I relaxed for a few more minutes and even called Jen.  We’ve been traveling so much together I missed experiencing this with her. Then again, I’m not sure she would have made it to the top. As we learned in Multnomah, hiking really isn’t her thing. lol

I snapped one more photo as the sunlight faded knowing I wouldn’t be able to capture any more.

Night view at Runyon Canyon

I started my decent which I found more challenging then climbing up but at this time it was getting dark. Really dark. Thankfully I had my cell phone to act as a flashlight.

I made it back to my hotel with plenty of time before my ride to the airport arrived.

I’m so glad I was able to sneak in this small excursion. I don’t care why I’m traveling, I will always find time to enjoy something about my destination.

If you’re interested I have a few other posts about my “observation deck” adventures.

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There are 4 comments so far. Join in on the conversation.

    Melissa (@TheDailyMel)

    December 2, 2013

    I love going to Runyon Canyon! I'm so glad you got to see the amazing views from there while you were out here visiting. When I go, I'm usually lazy and take the paved fire road which is accessible to the public. It's still a crazy steep climb though, but just not quite as rugged as the trail path. :) Reply


    December 3, 2013

    I've been following your sites for a few years and as I read your latest post on "Unworldly Travelers", I am curious to know if you prefer traveling alone or with others or do they each have their own pros/cons? I am luck enough to have an opportunity to work for a company that brings us all together for a sales meeting once a year. This year it was in Santa Barbara. After the end of the meeting I decided to take advantage of the west coast and stayed a few extra days to re-explore N. California. I drove up PCH, I vised Sonoma and a winery, and finally spent a wonderful day exploring San Francisco. As much as I love my family and wanted to share some of my experience with them, I really really loved this trip on my own. There were no complaints, no disagreements about where and when to eat, who needs a drink, who needs a restroom break. It was just awesome. So I am just curious if you prefer one over another. P.S. I must also point out that they are not as young as yours-One 17 and one shy of 19 but it seems like there always seems to be bickering of one form or another on family outings! Reply


      December 3, 2013

      Hi Sherri! I know you have. :) I REALLY enjoy traveling alone but truth be told, if my husband was into it I'd really love for him to come on some of these trips with me. I think there's a place for both traveling by yourself and with family/friends. Jen and I are going to Denver in a few days and I'm looking forward to some friend time that I just don't get at home with the family. But to answer your question, my goal is to take at least 1 trip a year by myself and hopefully go more internationally if I can. Traveling alone is empowering and exciting. Reply