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The Los Angeles Convention and Visitors Bureau (LA INC.; tel. 800/228-2452 or 213/624-7300; www.discoverlosangeles.com) is the city's main source for information. In addition to maintaining an informative website, answering telephone inquiries, and sending free visitors kits, the bureau provides two walk-in visitor centers: Downtown at 685 S. Figueroa St. at West 7th Street (Mon-Fri 9am-5pm), and in Hollywood at the Hollywood and Highland Center, 6801 Hollywood Blvd. at Highland Avenue (Mon-Fri 10am-10 pm and Sat-Sun 10am-7pm).

Many Los Angeles-area communities also have their own information centers and often maintain detailed and colorful websites that are loaded with timely information. These include the following:

  • The Beverly Hills Visitors Bureau, 239 S. Beverly Dr. (tel. 800/345-2210 or 310/248-1015; (www.beverlyhillsbehere.com), is open Monday through Friday from 8:30am to 5pm.
  • The Hollywood Arts Council, P.O. Box 931056, Hollywood, CA 90093 (tel. 323/462-2355; www.discoverhollywood.com), publishes the magazine Discover Hollywood, a seasonal publication that contains listings and schedules for the area's many theaters, galleries, music venues, and comedy clubs; the current issue is always available online. You can also load up on info at the Hollywood Visitor Center, 6801 Hollywood Blvd., (tel. 323/467-6412), on the first level of the Hollywood and Highland mall (near the Kodak Theatre's entrance).
  • The West Hollywood Convention and Visitors Bureau, 8687 Melrose Ave., M-38, West Hollywood, CA 90069 (tel. 800/368-6020 or 310/289-2525; www.visitwesthollywood.com), is located in the Pacific Design Center and is open Monday through Friday from 8:30am to 6pm.
  • The Santa Monica Convention and Visitors Bureau (tel. 800/544-5319 or 310/393-7593; www.santamonica.com) is the best source for information about Santa Monica. The Palisades Park walk-up center is located near the Santa Monica Pier, at1920 Main St., Ste. B, Santa Monica, CA 90405.), and is open daily from 10am to 4pm. Also check out www.malibu.org for information about Malibu, to the northwest.
  • The Pasadena Convention and Visitors Bureau 300 E. Green St.(tel. 626/795-9311; www.pasadenacal.com), is open Monday through Friday from 8am to 5pm.

Local tourist boards also are great for information regarding attractions and special events, but they often fail to keep a finger on the pulse of what's "in" in L.A., especially with regard to dining, culture, and nightlife. Several city-oriented newspapers and magazines offer more up-to-date info. L.A. Weekly (www.laweekly.com), a free listings magazine, is packed with information on current events around town. It's available from sidewalk news racks and in many stores and restaurants around the city.

The Los Angeles Times "Calendar" section of the Sunday paper, a good guide to the world of entertainment in and around L.A., includes listings of what's doing and where to do it. The Times also maintains a comprehensive website at www.latimes.com/theguide/. Information is culled from the newspaper's many departments and is always up to date. If you want to check out L.A.'s most immediate news, the Times's main website is www.latimes.com.

Los Angeles magazine (www.lamag.com) is a glossy city-based monthly full of real news and pure gossip, plus guides to L.A.'s art, music, and food scenes. Its calendar of events gives an excellent overview of goings-on at museums, art galleries, musical venues, and other places. The magazine is available at newsstands around town and in other major U.S. cities; you can also access stories and listings from the current issue on the Internet. Cybersurfers can visit @ L.A.'s website, www.at-la.com; its search engine, though somewhat tedious, provides links to more than 23,000 sites relating to the L.A. area.

To read numerous blogs about the Los Angeles scene, log onto LA.COM's blog page at www.la.com/pluck/blogs. For a more esoteric array of L.A.-based blogs, try Metroblogging Los Angeles at http://blogging.la.

Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.