Guide to the Fourth of July in LA (during a pandemic)

The City of Angels has a reputation for throwing the classiest parties ever, and it’s not going to let a little thing like a pandemic cramp its style. If you’re getting back in the travel groove after quarantine, there’s no better place to enjoy the quintessential American holiday — the Fourth of July.

While some celebrations may look different, the vibe is 100% California fun, sun and chill. Check out the following six ideas if you plan to be in the area, or if you’re a lucky resident of LA. You’ll find something to delight any taste.

1. Watch the Fireworks in Style

You can maintain social distancing while practicing one of the most traditional Fourth of July delights — watching fireworks illuminate the night sky. Head to Exposition Park, where you can catch the display from the Front Lawn of the Natural History Museum. Are you more the rugged outdoors type who likes to get your heart pumping before the main attraction? Hike up to the Baldwin Hills Scenic Overlook to watch the light show in the sky compete with the city neons below.

2. Go to the Drive-In

With many traditional theaters temporarily shuttered, drive-ins have made a roaring comeback. Visit popular locations like Paramount Drive-In or Electric Dusk Drive-In, which have reported seeing a surge in visits since COVID-19 hit. What’s not to love? Granted, you might get a few stray kernels of popcorn stuck under the driver’s seat, but that’s why car washes exist. Plus, you can chat all you like through the slow parts, and no one behind you will complain or shush you.

3. Hit up a Virtual Block Party

LA knows how to party with class. This year, Grand Park’s 4th of July block party is alive and well in the virtual world. The three-hour event promises fun for the whole family. Let the kids login with you to enjoy cooking demonstrations, musical performances, comedy ensembles and live workshops.

4. Have a Picnic in the Park

With over 3,400 miles of coastline, you can find a secluded spot to set out a blanket, have lunch and enjoy the wonders of nature. Just make sure you slather on the sunscreen — exposure to UV rays causes the majority of skin cancer cases.

If you head out at nightfall, pack a tent, especially if you’re on a date. Few things are more romantic than counting stars and identifying constellations with your sweetie. If restrictions close your favorite spot, why not set up camp in your backyard — or the one attached to your Airbnb rental?

5. Take a Hike

When it comes to airborne viruses, the more open air you have around you, the better. You still need to follow social distancing rules, but you can explore a ton of groovy locations. Check out Bee Rock, where you can tour the Old LA Zoo and see where tigers once made their lairs. Alternately, head to Rivas Canyon Trail, where you can see the various cacti and views of the Palisades.

6. Sip Yourself a Little Silly

It was a sorry spring for oenophiles — tasting rooms closed across the country. How on earth was anyone supposed to find their next favorite vintage? Fortunately, while few locations feature open tasting rooms yet, you can enjoy a nature hike around the grounds and gaze at all the fruit that is waiting to transform into liquid magic. You can also make a reservation at one of the select wineries offering a full-course meal while you imbibe.

Have a Safe and Enjoyable Fourth of July in LA

The City of Angels is the ideal place to spend any holiday, and the Fourth of July is no exception. If you want to make this Independence Day the most memorable yet, head west, young person, and enjoy all California has to offer.

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