Hollywood is not just a place. In certain contexts, Hollywood is shorthand for America's film industry. In others, it's the destination for every aspiring actor, director, or screenwriter. It's also the setting for so many legends and rumors it's hard to keep them straight. Regardless, Hollywood is amazing. The rolling Hollywood Hills, clad in a lush layer of greenery, cradle neighborhoods of all kinds and feature the one-of-a-kind American icon, the Hollywood sign. At first, the sign was a real-estate promotion that read "Hollywoodland." But by 1973, it was in tatters -- one O had toppled, and a vandal had set an L on fire. This led to its $250,000 reconstruction in 1978.
Down below, on Hollywood Boulevard, the sidewalk sports 2,000 terrazzo-and-brass stars that immortalize giants of the entertainment industry. The street is a colorful spot for people-watching and is the address of Mann's Chinese Theatre, perhaps the most famous cinema in the world. The unmistakable theater has two enormous red columns out front, a bronze roof, and authentic furnishings imported from China. Cast in the cement of the forecourt are the footprints, handprints, and hoofprints of past and present movie stars.
Address: Hollywood Visitor Information Center at 6801 Hollywood Blvd.
Continue to the next page for details on family vacations in lively Venice Beach.
To learn more about family vacation destinations, see:
- Family Vacations: Learn about hundreds of family vacations in destinations all over North America.
- Los Angeles City Guide: Find out where to stay, what to do, and where to eat when you visit Los Angeles.
- California State Guide: Learn about Mobil Travel Guide-rated hotels and restaurants in California, as well as other recreational activities.
- Scenic Drives: For those who think that getting there is half the fun, we have compiled more than 100 of the most scenic drives throughout the country.