There are three kinds of people in this world: introverts, extroverts, and people who cannot fold fitted sheets. If you’re an introvert—someone who reenergizes best in solitude—then this guide is your bible. Fret not, we introverts still enjoy busting a rug at The Short Stop, attending music festivals and participating at pot lucks. It’s just that being in close proximity to other humans all the time—rad as they may be—requires a whole lot of energy. We need a day or two alone each week when we don’t have to force a smile or socialize with others.
Alone time doesn’t always mean scrolling the ‘gram on the couch until your eyes shut. We handcrafted a list of our favorite places to fly solo and reboot the ole batteries in Los Angeles:
El Matador State Beach
Let the tunes blast and the good times roll on a solo drive down to this quintessential Malibu beach. We recommend parking on PCH to avoid fees, but read those parking signs like your life depends on it to avoid tickets. Once your feet hit the beach, power walk your way north until you reach the rock with a cement bench. Once perched, you're just high enough to revel in solitude and admire the views. Afterwards, grab a bite to eat at Neptune's Net for some fuel before heading back to civilization.
Alternatives: Point Dume State Beach; La Piedra State Beach
The Huntington Library and Botanical Gardens
This one goes out to all our green thumbs and plant lovers. Stroll through the California Garden which boasts 50,000 CA native plants, or take a trip to Suzhou, China at Garden of Flowing Fragrance. The Desert Garden is our personal favorite due to an unhealthy obsession with cacti and succulents. When you tire of browsing mother earth's finest creations, settle down on a patch of grass south of the Desert Garden for a little horizontal time. The property is spacious enough to find personal space amidst the other visitors.
Alternatives: Los Angeles County Arboretum and Botanic Garden; The Getty; Descanso Gardens; Peace Awareness Labyrinth and Gardens
The Museum of Contemporary Art
So, you've got an art craving. But which of LA’s finest art institutions has earned your patronage this go-around? Your intuition and friends might be pointing you to LACMA or The Broad, but they’re wrong. These top-shelf museums are flooded with art lovers and offer no reprieve from human interaction. We suggest hitting up MOCA, home to almost 5,000 masterpieces, where neither lines nor selfie-obsessed millennials flood the place. Flying solo means there is no one to rush you through the exhibits. Laughing on the Outside is a 10/10 favorite collection and features “Ping Pond Tables”, a centerpiece by Gabriel Orozco. Try becoming a table tennis master on that setup!
Alternatives: LACMA; NHMLA; The Broad; Museum of Death
Echo Park Lake
Echo Park Lake has all the great amenities a city park should offer. Swing by Beacon for a yummy spam and egg sandwich or a vendor-on-wheels for fresh fruit or elote. Once you've grabbed the grub, snag a secluded spot on the lawn to chow down and chill. Feeling active? Run a lap around the lake or get bendy in the shade to get your heart racing. Whether you’re sedentary or sprinting, there are plenty of dogs to ogle.
Alternatives: Ernest E. Debs Regional Park; El Dorado Nature Center; Palisades Park
For those who rely on art therapy to decompress, Glaze Fire has your back for ceramic painting fun. Weekdays are recommended for a quiet afternoon on your own, but if you must go on the weekend, you'll zone out to your design in no time. The owner is incredibly friendly and offers expert tips if you're feeling uninspired. The dinosaur mugs and shark candle holders are fan favorites. Alcove Cafe & Bakery is located right next door and offers a vast selection of pastries and eats if you’re feeling hungry. If you feel like guzzling wine or shotgunning a beer, Hillhurst Liquor is located down the street for your adult bevie needs.
Alternatives: Good Dirt LA; Ball Clay Studio; Peach Tree Pottery
We won't lie to you, there are tons of terrific independent bookstores in LA. Most of our favorites are cozy and welcoming as hell, but Skylight Books in Los Feliz might take the cake for best place to snuggle up with a book. We normally gravitate towards the poetry section. Fun fact: sometimes authors come in for signings and to spit some truth. Check out the bulletin board to figure out when and who!
Alternatives: The Last Bookstore; Diesel, A Bookstore; Stories; Your local public library
To read more about LA Bookstores, peep Author Amelia Gray’s Ode to Bookstores in Los Angeles HERE ...
Before you call us creeps, please note we have no intention of grave robbing or summoning the dead via Ouija board. We're merely taking a stroll through a quiet, hauntingly beautiful public space. Plus, Cinespia offers movie screenings where hundreds picnic and chill among the dead all of the damn time. Why not check out the resting places of Judy Garland, Toto, Johnny Ramone and Vampira while you’re at it? Weekday mornings and afternoons tend to be awfully quiet— perfect for a solo stroll alone with your thoughts or conversations with the deceased.
Alternatives: Westwood Village Memorial Park
; Forest Lawn Memorial Park
Attending a bar solo does not make you a loser nor does it mean you're on a dick/poon hunt. Sometimes you've had a long week and need to knock one back, simple as that. Make your way to Westbound, a classy yet laid back bar in the Arts District, for craft cocktails and addictingly delicious potato chips. We recommend taking a Lyft as the drinks are strong and will likely knock you on your ass!
Misfit; The Woods
; Electric Owl
Cheers to yo’self! You’ve earned the right to an evening of sipping ladymade wine. Whether you’re looking for a bottle to take home and sip solo or scouting a place to kick it, Vinovore in Silver Lake is where it's at. We recommend bringing a great book or purchasing a Penguin Classics if you forgot yours and settling into one of the couches. If you want to make it a monthly thing, howl at the HBIC (Head Beast in Charge) Coly Den Haan to join the wolfpack.
Alternatives: Bar Bandini; Froma on Melrose
Come here for a fine cup of joe paired with the world's best waffle. (Yes, we’ve been to Belgium). The Belgian waffle offers the right amount of sweet and savory, topped with a thick cut of bacon and an egg poached to perfection. Not into waffles? Indulge in the steak and eggs or breakfast pizza for a heartier meal. Be warned, the line is usually a scene, but worth every minute. A majority of the crowd order to-go, so there's plenty of space to settle and get your grub on in peace.
Alternatives: Belle Vie; Baroo
Skip the Runyon nonsense and head to the Santa Monica Mountains for hands down the dopest hike in LA. Be sure to bring water and hydrate well as the hike is mostly uphill. Over the years, the rain has eroded part of the trail and requires a little climbing, which scares off the crowds. Once you reach the top, take in the panoramic views of the mountains and the ocean blue. When you're done hiking, bask in the glory of one of Malibu’s beaches.
Alternatives: Los Liones Canyon Trail; Wisdom Tree; Eaton Canyon Falls; Monrovia Canyon Park
Joshua Tree National Park
When the urge to get out of town presents itself, take your ass straight to Joshua Tree National Park. Hit up
The Natural Sisters Cafe outside the entrance for a mean brekkie. Once you arrive in the park, it's player’s choice. There are a handful of hikes to get that booty high and tight. Lucky for you, we interviewed the designers behind Joshua Tree House for their desert itinerary. Plan your trip right HERE.
No, we aren’t looking to climb into bed with you, unless that’s something you’re interested in. We just know from personal experience the best place for an introvert to reset is in the sanctuary created in one’s home. If your idea of recharging is scrolling while horizontal, do it. If you like to spin vinyl and paint, do it. If you just want to decompress in the nude, go wild.
LA-born, Georgia-bred and one-half of a set of identical twins, Casha spends her days writing and exploring. She’s a classic film enthusiast, runner, dog walker and collector of quotes and tattoos. Follow her adventures @cashad.