When you think of Los Angeles, images of busy streets, Hollywood glamor, and beach vibes likely come to mind.  But did you know that between the urban sprawl lies beautiful greenery and flourishing nature waiting to be discovered? For outdoor enthusiasts looking to experience LA in a nonconventional way, there are plenty of hidden gems scattered throughout the county.  Let’s uncover some of these lesser-known outdoor hotspots that will excite any nature minded traveler.

Malibu Creek State Park

Tucked away in the Santa Monica Mountains, Malibu Creek State Park offers a serene escape from the city’s hustle and bustle.  With over 8,000 acres of stunning landscapes, this park boasts scenic trails, glistening streams, and breathtaking vistas.  Outdoor enthusiasts can hike through the rugged terrain, paddle along the tranquil waters, or simply bask in the natural beauty that surrounds them.  Don’t forget to keep an eye out for wildlife sightings, as the park is home to a diverse array of species, including deer, birds, and even the occasional mountain lion.

Hollywood Sign Trail

While the Hollywood Sign is an iconic symbol of the city, many visitors overlook the scenic trails that lead up to this famous landmark.  Embark on a hike along the Hollywood Sign Trail, and you’ll be rewarded with panoramic views of Los Angeles sprawling beneath you.  As you ascend the winding paths of Griffith Park, you’ll feel a world away from the hustle of city life, surrounded by lush greenery and the soothing sounds of nature.  Whether you’re a seasoned hiker or just looking for a leisurely stroll, this trail offers something for everyone to enjoy.

Huntington Library, Art Museum, and Botanical Gardens

For a more tranquil outdoor experience, head to the Huntington Library, Art Museum, and Botanical Gardens in San Marino.  This sprawling estate spans 120 acres and features a diverse range of gardens, from Japanese landscapes to colorful desert flora.  Take a leisurely stroll through the botanical gardens, pausing to admire the vibrant blooms and serene water features.  Afterward, explore the library and art museum, where you’ll find an extensive collection of rare books, manuscripts, and artwork spanning centuries of history.

Solstice Canyon

Nestled in the heart of the Santa Monica Mountains, Solstice Canyon offers a picturesque setting for outdoor exploration.  Follow the meandering trails through oak woodlands and riparian habitats, keeping an eye out for remnants of the area’s rich history, including the ruins of an old stone cottage and a century-old hunting lodge.  As you hike deeper into the canyon, you’ll be rewarded with stunning views of cascading waterfalls and lush canyon walls.  Pack a picnic and spend the day immersing yourself in the natural beauty of this hidden gem.

Topanga State Park

Escape the urban chaos and immerse yourself in the rugged wilderness of Topanga State Park.  Located in the Santa Monica Mountains, this expansive park offers miles of scenic trails, perfect for hiking, mountain biking, and horseback riding.  Traverse through shady oak groves, past tranquil streams, and up to panoramic vistas overlooking the Pacific Ocean.  With its diverse landscapes and abundance of wildlife, Topanga State Park is a nature lover’s paradise right in the heart of Los Angeles.

Explore the Wild Side of Los Angeles

While Los Angeles may be best known for its glitz and glamor, it’s also home to some truly spectacular natural wonders.  Be safe when exploring off the beaten path, injuries are common.  Don’t be afraid to reach out to a top rated Los Angeles injury lawyer if you are the victim of an accident.

From sprawling state parks to hidden canyons and botanical gardens, there’s no shortage of outdoor adventures waiting to be discovered.  So next time you find yourself in the City of Angels, be sure to venture off the beaten path and explore these hidden nature gems for a truly unforgettable experience.