Glendale is located approximately eight miles north of downtown Los Angeles within the San Fernando Valley and the Verdugo Mountains, best known as the site of the Forest Lawn Memorial Park Cemetery, which serves as the burial site for a number of high-profile Hollywood celebrities and luminaries. Its Grand Central Airport is renowned as the departure point for the first commercial transcontinental flight, which was flown by famed 20th-century pilot Charles Lindbergh.
1.Forest Lawn Memorial Park
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Forest Lawn Memorial Park is one of Southern California's most unique landmarks, comprised of a nonprofit cemetery and a number of attractions related to the idea of death and funerals. The memorial park was originally opened in 1906 by a group of San Francisco businessmen and took on its current direction after its 1912 purchase by Hubert Eaton and C.B. Sims, who envisioned the cemetery as a celebratory space reflecting its owners' optimistic Christian beliefs about life and death. Uniquely-named cemetery sections house a number of iconic Hollywood celebrities, including 20th century luminaries such as Carole Lombard, Sammy Davis Jr., Walt Disney, and Nat King Cole. The memorial park is also home to the Forest Lawn Museum, which displays a variety of fine arts exhibits, and the Hall of the Crucifixion and Resurrection, which is home to two of the Western Hemisphere's largest religious artworks.
1712 S Glendale Ave, Glendale, CA 91205, Phone: 888-204-3131
2.The Glendale Galleria
© The Glendale Galleria
The Glendale Galleria is a three-story shopping center within downtown Glendale, offering more than 1.6 million square feet of retail and business space. The center, which was originally opened to the public in 1976, is the fourth-largest shopping center in Los Angeles County and is one of America's highest-grossing shopping centers. Since 2002, it has been owned and operated by Brookfield Properties Retail Group. It is known as the site of original Disney Store and Apple Store locations and the first three-story Target location in the world, which was opened to the public in July of 2007. More than 30 million annual patrons shop at the complex, which is home to anchor retailers such as Bloomingdale's, Macy's, J.C. Penney, and Dick's Sporting Goods. Boutique stores such as Lush, Uniqlo, and Zara are also offered, along with a wide variety of full-service and quick-casual restaurants, including favorite chains Chipotle, In-N-Out Burger, and Peet's Coffee and Tea.
100 W Broadway, Glendale, CA 91210, Phone: 818-246-6737
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Brand Park is a 31-acre park that is located at the foothills of the Verdugo Mountains, offering a wide variety of indoor and outdoor recreational and entertainment opportunities for visitors of all ages. The park is open to the public daily between sunrise and sunset and was originally founded around the 1904 home of Leslie C. Brand, which has been operated as the Brand Library and Art Center since 1956. The 26,000-square-foot complex was originally modeled after the 1893 Chicago World's Fair's East Indian Pavilion and is home to a collection of more than 110,000 holdings focusing on the visual arts and music. Art galleries, recital halls, and sculpture courts are offered as part of the library complex, along with the 1,734-square-foot Brand Studios, which offer visual and performing arts workshops for community members. The park is also home to the Whispering Pine Tea House and Friendship Garden, the Doctors House Museum and Gazebo, and a wide variety of outdoor recreational facilities, including basketball and softball fields, children's playgrounds, and hiking and biking trails.
1601 West Mountain Street, Glendale, CA 91201, Phone: 818-548-3782
4.Glendale Centre Theatre
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Glendale Centre Theatre is the United States' longest continuously weekly-operating live theater, in operation every week since 1947 without going dark. The theater was opened by Salt Lake City actors Ruth and Nathan Hale, originally opened as the Hale Centre Theatre. The 110-seat theater-in-the-round offers a wide variety of annual performances, including classic Broadway comedies and musicals, new works, and children's theater performances. Public auditions are held periodically, with singing and non-singing roles available for actors of all ages. A children's summer theater camp is offered each year, with acting, singing, dancing, improv, and stage combat workshops offered for young participants. Children are also welcome to celebrate their birthdays at the theater, with a number of birthday party packages available for rental, including private theater tours and character appearance parties.
324 North Orange St, Glendale, CA 91203, Phone: 818-244-8481
5.The Alex Theatre
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The Alex Theatre is a Los Angeles County landmark, originally opened to the public in 1925 by the West Coast-Langley Theatre Circuit in honor of the company's owner's son Alexander. The lavishly-constructed theater was known as a major blockbuster film showing and premiere site throughout the 20th century, hosting the premieres of films such as National Velvet and Going My Way and showcasing top films such as Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom and Ben-Hur. Since the late 20th century, the theater has been operated by the Glendale Arts nonprofit organization, showcasing more than 250 live theatrical performances throughout the year, including plays, dance performances, concerts, comedy shows, and television and film industry award ceremonies. More than 100,000 annual patrons attend events held by the Glendale Youth Orchestra, the Musical Theatre Guild, the Los Angeles Chamber Orchestra, and the Alex Film Society, which showcases regular presentations of classic films. Backstage tours of the theater are available for small groups and organizations by request.
216 N Brand Blvd, Glendale, CA 91203, Phone: 818-243-2539
6.Deukmejian Wilderness Park
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Deukmejian Wilderness Park is a 709-acre park located along the foothills of the San Gabriel Mountains, bordering the northernmost portion of the City of Glendale. The park is located adjacent to the Angeles National Forest and showcases elevations ranging from 2,159 to 4,775 feet throughout its chaparral, sage scrub, and woodland ecosystems. Most park visitor activities are located within a 12-acre section near the park's southern edge known as the Park Center, which is home to the park's ranger station and the historic Le Mesnager barn facility. Much of the rest of the park remains relatively undisturbed, though a number of visitor hiking trails throughout the park provide opportunities for wildlife watching and stunning views of the Crescenta Valley.
3429 Markridge Rd, Glendale, CA 91214, Phone: 818-548-3795
7.The Museum of Neon Art
© The Museum of Neon Art
The Museum of Neon Art, commonly referred to as MONA, is the world's first art museum exclusively dedicated to the preservation of neon art, including kinetic art, electric media, and neon lighting advertisements. The museum was originally opened to the public in 1981 by Richard Jenkins and Lili Lakich in a downtown Los Angeles location before moving to Glendale in 2016. Today, it is home to one of the world's largest collections of electric media, including neon signs from Los Angeles landmarks such as Grauman's Chinese Theatre and the Brown Derby. It strives to educate the public on the scientific and creative principles of neon media, showcasing continually-rotating exhibits of historic neon signs and works by top international neon artists. Nighttime Neon Cruise bus tours of Los Angeles signs and marquees are also offered by the museum, along with a variety of introductory glass work courses for artists.
216 S Brand Blvd, Glendale, CA 91204, Phone: 818-696-2149
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Central Park is a small community park in Glendale that offers a wide variety of year-round outdoor programming for residents and visitors. The park, which is not affiliated with New York's famous Central Park, is located adjacent to several downtown Glendale attractions, including the city's Central Library, Adult Recreation Center, and the future site of the Armenian American Museum. It is the site of a significant World War II memorial facilitated by the region's Korean-American population, honoring Korean women imprisoned as forced prostitutes in brothels in Japan during the war. During the summer months, the park is home to the city's Street Food Cinema series, which pair family-friendly outdoor movie showings with gourmet food trucks and live music performances.
216 S Brand Blvd, Glendale, CA 91203, Phone: 818-548-3775
9.Raffi's Place Restaurant
© Raffi's Place Restaurant
Raffi's Place Restaurant is a Mediterranean-style restaurant in downtown Glendale near the Americana at Brand that was originally opened to the public in December of 1994 by founders Rafik and Gohar Bakijanian. The restaurant blends traditional Persian and Middle Eastern cuisine elements in a variety of authentic Mediterranean entree offerings that utilize fresh, locally-sourced ingredients, including signature kebab dishes. It is a popular dining destination throughout the Los Angeles region, frequented by celebrities such as Jon Voight, Anthony Hopkins, and Metta World Peace. Indoor and outdoor seating is available, including seating within a fully-landscaped courtyard and patio area. Full bar service is offered, including Mediterranean-style craft cocktails. Guests may also bring their own bottles of wine to the restaurant for an additional corkage fee.
211 E Broadway, Glendale, CA 91205, Phone: 818-240-7411
10.Casa Adobe De San Rafael and Park
© Casa Adobe De San Rafael and Park
Casa Adobe De San Rafael and Park is a hacienda-type adobe structure that was originally constructed in 1865 by Los Angeles' first sheriff Tomas Avila Sanchez and his wife Maria Sepulveda. The home remained in the Sanchez family until the late 1880s, when it was passed through several owners who made substantial additions to the property. In the early 1930s, it was acquired by the City of Glendale after the work of women's rights citizen activist groups. Today, it is open to the public as a living history museum, showcasing original rooms, period-appropriate furnishings, and artifacts belonging to the Sanchez family. Rooms highlighted as part of tours include the home's sala main guest parlor, salita small family parlor and den, and fully-furnished bedroom, which showcases a trunk originally belonging to Maria. An exhibit room also showcases artifacts related to Sanchez's life and career, including an historic organ and benches constructed by Los Angeles Cub Scouts.
1330 Dorothy Dr, Glendale, CA 91202, Phone: 818-548-2184
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Beaudry Loop is a six-mile loop trail located within the Verdugo mountain range between the cities of Glendale and Burbank, offering ample opportunity for urban hikes throughout the year. The loop's trailhead begins in Glendale along Beaudry Boulevard, near the city's flood control dam and spillway, and traverses a flat-elevation dirt road for its first half mile. At Beaudry North and the South Motorways, the trail diverges at the loop, allowing hikers to take its northern or southern route. The route eventually opens up to spectacular views of the Los Angeles region and the San Gabriel Mountains, offering opportunities to contrast the city's urban sprawl with its undeveloped surroundings. Hikers should be advised that the trail offers little shade and can get very hot very quickly during the summer months.
3110 Beaudry Terrace, Glendale, CA 91208
12.Glendale Federal Savings Building
© Glendale Federal Savings Building
Glendale Federal Savings Building is one of downtown Glendale's most-renowned historic buildings, originally designed and constructed in 1959 by Peruvian architect W.A. Sarmiento, a designer of hundreds of significant Modernist architectural structures throughout the United States in the mid-20th century. The bank's design was commissioned by Glendale Federal founder and CEO J.E. Hoeft, who wanted the building's design to reflect style influences of West Coast Modernism. Today, the building is known for unique architectural elements such as its bright red dramatically-angled stair and elevator tower, which is elevated above the building's first floor to provide its mezzanine level with ample natural sunlight. Other important architectural elements include blue enameled steel louvers that pivot throughout the day through the use of solar power.
401 N. Brand Blvd. Glendale, CA 91203, Phone: 818-500-2000
13.The Americana at Brand
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The Americana at Brand is Glendale's premiere city center retail complex, owned and operated by Los Angeles-based corporation Caruso Affiliated. The city center was originally opened to the public in May of 2008, showcasing more than 80 tenants throughout its complex, including top international retail chains such as Barneys New York, Barnes and Noble, Forever 21, and Nordstrom. Dining options range from food pop-ups and quick-casual chains to gourmet full-service restaurants, including favorites such as the Cheesecake Factory, Pinkberry, and Shake Shack. Entertainment options include an 18-theater Pacific Theaters cinema and a two-acre public park facility located within the center of the complex, which features an animated Waters of America fountain showcasing hourly musical performances. A trolley system is offered for guest transportation, and 242 luxury condominiums are available for rent throughout the complex. During the winter months, the complex offers a Christmas tree lighting event, showcasing one of Los Angeles County's tallest public Christmas trees.
889 Americana Way, Glendale, CA 91210, Phone: 818-637-8982
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Mount Gleason is the fifth-most-prominent mountain peak within the San Gabriel Mountains, included on the Sierra Club's Hundred Peaks List for its international renown. The mountain is located along the western end of the mountain range and is covered in conifer tree ecosystems, accessible via vehicle from Mount Gleason Road. A wide range of hiking trails are also offered to reach the summit of the mountain, including the Pacific Crest Trail, which runs the length of the mountain's spine and is accessible to hikers via Mill Creek Summit, a hike that spans 16 miles in total. Campgrounds that are available for overnight stay for summit hikers include the Lightning Point and Messenger Flats Campgrounds, both located on the mountain itself. Vehicular visitors should note that Mount Gleason Road is a very steep upward drive and is recommended for drivers of high skill level.
15.Catalina Verdugo Adobe
© Catalina Verdugo Adobe
Catalina Verdugo Adobe is a 1.3-acre park located at the base of the Verdugo Hills in Glendale, home to one of the city's oldest historic buildings, an adobe structure built by Teodoro Verdugo that is believed to have been constructed in 1828 and was acquired by the city in 1989. The California Historical Landmark property offers a variety of outdoor visitor facilities, including a brick patio and wooden visitor picnic tables. Its grounds are also home to the remains of the historic 1847 "Oak of Peace," which was named for its connection to the region's surrender to the United States by Mexican army representatives. Though the tree died in 1987, its trunk is still visible on the property. Due to the property's historic nature, public barbecues and amplified sound are not permitted at the facility.
2211 Bonita Dr, Glendale, CA 91208, Phone: 818-548-2000
16.Scholl Canyon Golf Club
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Scholl Canyon Golf Club is a golf and tennis club located atop Southern California's Verdugo mountain range, overlooking Glendale and the San Fernando Valley. The sports complex features an 18-hole golf course that was designed by William P. Bell and has been consistently ranked as one of the nation's top mid-range golf courses. Tee times are available for reservation up to seven days in advance of visit, along with a wide variety of golf instruction courses for students of all ages and ability levels. A full golf practice facility is offered, along with several tennis courts for tennis play and instruction. A pro shop and snack bar are offered at the facility's clubhouse and lawn, which may be rented for private special events such as weddings and corporate functions.
3800 E. Glenoaks Blvd., Glendale, CA 91206, Phone: 818-243-4100
17.Din Tai Fung Dumpling House
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Din Tai Fung Dumpling House is a popular chain of Taiwanese eateries that was originally opened as a retail cooking oil company in 1958. The chain opened its first steamed dumpling and noodle restaurants in 1972 and has since grown to offer locations throughout the United States and Asia, including a location in Glendale within the Americana at Brand shopping and entertainment complex. It has been acclaimed by international publications such as The New York Times and received a Michelin star rating for its Hong Kong location in 2010. Traditional Chinese fare is served at the restaurant at lunch and dinner, including the chain's signature handmade soup dumplings and truffle dumplings, along with a variety of noodle, fried rice, and potsticker dishes. Asian-style cocktails are also served, along with non-alcoholic beverages such as boba tea and slushies.
177 Caruso Ave, Glendale, CA 91210, Phone: 818-551-5561
18.The Parish Church of St. Mark
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The Parish Church of St. Mark, also known as St. Mark's Episcopal Church, is a famed Glendale church that was originally founded in 1893. The church, which is located on North Brand Boulevard in the city's center, has been showcased in major television series such as Desperate Housewives and The Mentalist and is noted as a popular venue for concert performances and theatrical productions. Its current building was designed in 1947 by ecclesiastical architect Carlton M. Winslow, showcasing Gothic Revival and Spanish architectural elements. It is known for its 100-foot spire, ornate Gothic facade, life-sized Jesus statue, and outdoor garden, which is open every day between dawn and dusk for visitor relaxation and contemplation.
1020 N Brand Blvd, Glendale, CA 91202, Phone: 818-240-3860
Granville is a casual Glendale cafe that offers comfort food classics produced in a sustainable, environmentally-friendly environment. All dishes are prepared from the highest possible quality ingredients, including antibiotic and hormone-free meats, organic produce, and artisan breads and cheeses. The restaurant strives to craft unpretentious upscale fare at affordable prices in a come-as-you-are atmosphere, encouraging sharing of large-portion dishes. Brunch, lunch, and dinner fare includes handcrafted burgers and sandwiches, classic pasta dishes, and a variety of land and sea dishes, including favorites such as chicken marsala, sustainably-sourced grilled salmon, and certified-humane New York strip steak. Sustainable organic coffees are also served, along with extensive beer, wine, and liquor menus.
807 Americana Way, Glendale, CA 91210, Phone: 818-550-0472
© Foxy's Restaurant
Foxy's Restaurant is an iconic Southwestern-style Glendale eatery that was originally opened in 1964, serving large portions of classic American and Mexican fare at breakfast, lunch, and dinner daily. The restaurant offers indoor and outdoor seating, including al fresco patio dining, and is located across the street from the Americana at Brand and Glendale Galleria shopping centers. A wide menu of Southwestern-influenced diner fare is offered, including classic hot and cold sandwiches and wraps, specialty cheese omelets, shareable appetizers, and classic land and sea entrees with a Mexican twist. Full health-conscious and vegan menus are also offered, along with breakfast menus of egg dishes, Benedicts, and other morning favorites. Wine, beer, and cocktail menus are available throughout the day, including traditional Mexican Micheladas.
206 W Colorado St, Glendale, CA 91204, Phone: 818-246-0244
21.Brewyard Beer Company
© Brewyard Beer Company
Brewyard Beer Company is Glendale's first microbrewery, opened to the public in December of 2015 by owners and close friends Sherwin Antonio and Kirk Nishikawa. The brewery specializes in the production of common lagers, which were invented in California during the 19th century. It strives to expand on the popular California Common lager style with a variety of hybrid brews incorporating the style's signature lighter, crisper flavor into other popular brewing styles. Flagship brews produced by the company include its Druuums Please! California Common Lager, Smoking Redhead Irish Red Common Lager, Black Sunrise Black Common Lager, and Sunday Morning Blonde Common Lager, along with a variety of Belgian and barrel-aged styles. A public tap room offers an open layout, food truck pop-ups, and a variety of board games for visitors to play.
906 Western Ave, Glendale, CA 91201, Phone: 818-409-9448
© Mignon Chocolate
Mignon Chocolate is a family-owned and operated Ukrainian bakery and chocolatier in Glendale that was originally established in 1910 in the Ukrainian city of Kharkov, founded by Hovsep Ter-Poghossian, Sr. Following Hovsep Sr.'s imprisonment in Siberia and immigration to Iran, the bakery became a regional favorite among the country's Armenian, Jewish, Russian, and Greek populations. Since 2002, the Ter-Poghossian family has operated a branch of the bakery in Glendale, showcasing more than 60 varieties of chocolates and truffles for sale. As one of Southern California's few chocolatiers that produce all of their chocolates locally, the company utilizes family recipes passed down for generations crafted with high-quality ingredients and without preservatives. Favorite flavors include hazelnut truffles, ginger and lime sea salt chocolates, and dark-chocolate-dipped orange peels.
15 N Verdugo Rd, Glendale, CA 91206, Phone: 818-549-9600
22 Best Things to Do in Glendale, California
- Forest Lawn Memorial Park, Photo: Courtesy of Kit Leong - Fotolia.com
- The Glendale Galleria, Photo: The Glendale Galleria
- Brand Park, Photo: Courtesy of Gabe - Fotolia.com
- Glendale Centre Theatre, Photo: Courtesy of ChiccoDodiFC - Fotolia.com
- The Alex Theatre, Photo: Courtesy of matteozin - Fotolia.com
- Deukmejian Wilderness Park, Photo: Courtesy of PatrickCheatham - Fotolia.com
- The Museum of Neon Art, Photo: The Museum of Neon Art
- Central Park, Photo: Courtesy of Kelly Mercer - Fotolia.com
- Raffi's Place Restaurant, Photo: Raffi's Place Restaurant
- Casa Adobe De San Rafael and Park, Photo: Casa Adobe De San Rafael and Park
- Beaudry Loop, Photo: Courtesy of Joshua Resnick - Fotolia.com
- Glendale Federal Savings Building, Photo: Glendale Federal Savings Building
- The Americana at Brand, Photo: Courtesy of akoppo1 - Fotolia.com
- Mount Gleason, Photo: Courtesy of Julia - Fotolia.com
- Catalina Verdugo Adobe, Photo: Catalina Verdugo Adobe
- Scholl Canyon Golf Club, Photo: Courtesy of Kzenon - Fotolia.com
- Din Tai Fung Dumpling House, Photo: Courtesy of nicomax - Fotolia.com
- The Parish Church of St. Mark, Photo: Courtesy of daliu - Fotolia.com
- Granville, Photo: Granville
- Foxy's Restaurant, Photo: Foxy's Restaurant
- Brewyard Beer Company, Photo: Brewyard Beer Company
- Mignon Chocolate, Photo: Mignon Chocolate
- Cover Photo: Courtesy of Courtney - Fotolia.com