What would a perfect tour of L.A. in a day include? Danny Roman thinks he has it figured out, and it doesn't involve maps of the stars' homes or double-decker buses.
"[Travelers] land at LAX, hop in a rental car, turn on the GPS that tells them to get on the 405 Freeway at 5 p.m.," Roman says. "Then they hate L.A." He started Bikes and Hikes L.A. Ecotourism two years ago to offer a better way to explore the history and beauty of Southern California.
Roman has designed a 32-mile bicycle tour of the city from West Hollywood to the residential areas of Beverly Hills and the beaches of Santa Monica, Venice and Marina Del Rey. OK, technically this isn't just L.A. but no need to quibble. The tour offers a chance to pedal past the canals of Venice, see Frank Gehry's house in Santa Monica and stop at the studios where "The Wizard of Oz" was filmed.
The L.A. in a Day tour mixes bicycle riding with a walking tour of the Greystone Mansion and Park in Beverly Hills and a lunch stop at Venice Beach. (Cyclists buy their own lunch; a $10 meal of freshly made juice and a wrap is Roman's suggestion.) The route includes "bike-bys" of Brentwood Village, Santa Monica Pier, Muscle Beach in Venice and more. The tour takes about five or six hours and "burns 2,000 to 2,600 calories," Roman says.
When: Tours leave at 10 a.m. daily, and other times are available by arrangement. Participants start from the company's office at 8743 Santa Monica Blvd. in West Hollywood.
Price: $162 a person, which includes a tour guide, hybrid road bike rental, safety helmet and safety vest.
Contact: Bikes and Hikes L.A. Ecotourism, (323) 796-8555