Getting there & away
The main bus terminal for Greyhound (213-629-8421; 1716 E 7th St) is in an unsavory part of Downtown, so avoid arriving after dark. Bus 58 makes the 10-minute trip to the transit plaza at Union Station with onward service across town, including Metro Rail’s Red Line to Hollywood. Some Greyhound buses go directly to the terminal in Hollywood (323-466-6381; 1715 N Cahuenga Blvd) and a few also pass through Pasadena (626-792-5116; 645 E Walnut St) and Long Beach (562-218-3011; 1498 Long Beach Blvd).
Greyhound buses serve San Diego at least hourly ($16, 2¼ to four hours) and there are up to eight buses to/from Santa Barbara ($12, 2¼ to three hours). Services to/from San Francisco run almost hourly ($43, 7½ to 12½ hours). There are also frequent departures to Anaheim and Disneyland ($8.50, one hour).
All the major international car-rental agencies have branches at LAX and throughout Los Angeles. If you haven’t prebooked, use the courtesy phones in the arrival areas at LAX. Offices and lots are outside the airport, but each company provides free shuttles to take you there.
For Harley rentals, check Eagle Rider (310-536-6777; www.eaglerider.com; 11860 S La Cienega Blvd, Hawthorne; 9am-5pm) or Route 66 (310-578-0112, 888-434-4473; 4161 Lincoln Blvd, Marina del Rey; 9am-6pm Tue-Sat, 10am-5pm Sun & Mon). Rates range from $75 to $135 a day, with discounts for longer rentals.
Amtrak trains roll into Downtown’s historic Union Station (800-872-7245; 800 N Alameda St). The Pacific Surfliner travels daily to San Diego ($26, 2¾ hours), Santa Barbara ($17, 2½ hours) and San Luis Obispo ($25, 5½ hours). Amtrak cross-country Coast Starlight, Southwest Chief and Sunset Limited trains also depart from Union Station.US Visa section of this website.***
The main gateway to LA is Los Angeles International Airport (LAX; 310-646- 5252; www.lawa.org), right on the coast not far south of Santa Monica and Venice. Its eight terminals are built around a horseshoe-shaped bi-level traffic loop. Ticketing and check-in are on the upper (departure) level, while baggage-claim areas are on the lower (arrival) level. The hub for most international airlines is the Tom Bradley International Terminal.
To travel between terminals, board the free Shuttle ‘A’ beneath the ‘Shuttle’ sign outside each terminal on the lower level. Hotel shuttles stop here as well. A free minibus for the mobility-impaired can be ordered by calling 310-646-6402.
Domestic flights operated by Alaska, Aloha, America West, American, Southwest and United also use the Bob Hope Airport (818-840-8840, 800-835-9287; www.burbankairport.com) in Burbank, in the San Fernando Valley, which is handy if you’re headed for Hollywood, Downtown or Pasadena.
Ontario International Airport (909-937-2700; www.lawa.org/ont), approximately 35 miles east of Downtown LA, is another regional landing base.