“So, how can I get to visit the best view of Hollywood sign?”
Spend some time in Griffith Park, or anywhere else in L.A., and you will eventually hear The Question.
The sign, which read “Hollywoodland” and first appeared in the Santa Monica Mountains in 1923, has been a beacon. It attracted potential homeowners to purchase plots in Hollywoodland’s housing development. Then it became a symbol for the American entertainment industry. Much to the dismay of Angelenos, it is now a global tourist icon of Los Angeles.
People travel from all parts of the globe to Southern California to see the big white letters and best view of Hollywood sign. However, the sign is located high up on a mountain, with no address or parking space, so it’s not always easy to find the right way.
These are the top spots to see one of the most iconic signs on the planet.
This article is adapted from Casey Schreiner’s book, Discovering Griffith Park: A Local’s Guide. It also contains trail maps, history, and details about Los Angeles’ remaining 4,310-acre Griffith Park.
One of the easiest places to see the best view of Hollywood sign is not even inside Griffith Park—it’s at the Hollywood and Highland shopping and entertainment complex.
It is easy to reach this area in Hollywood’s heart by public transit (Metro station: Hollywood/Highland). You can also walk to other landmarks such as the El Capitan, Chinese theatres, the Dolby Theater (home to the Oscars), Musso & Frank Grill, and the Roosevelt Hotel Hollywood. The shopping center is designed to look like a film set for intolerance in 1916. The outdoor spaces on the upper levels face directly toward the Hollywood Sign.
Hollywood Reservoir and the Mulholland Dam
The flat, paved path around the Hollywood Reservoir offers a beautiful time in California outdoors and one of the best view of Hollywood sign. This area is located on land owned by the Department of Water and Power. The hours and rules are different from those in Griffith Woods Park.
Do not be alarmed about the highway name. This is a section of dirt road on a stretch of the famed Mulholland Drive.
While some parts are paved, the majority of Griffith Park’s dirt roads are unaffected by traffic. The Hollywoodland Highway is a great way for you to see the best view of Hollywood signs and historic Hollywoodland homes without having to deal with the tourist vans that throng nearby Hollywood Lake Park. Canyon Lake Drive is the northern route, while Weidlake Drive is the southern. You can find more information in Exploring Griffith Woods Park.
The Hollywood Sign is located at Mount Lee (1.820 feet above sea level), and not, as many visitors believe, atop Mount Hollywood.
Visitors might also be interested to know that the sign is not accessible by foot. However, a climb up Mount Lee via wide roads and trails will take you below the sign, giving you stunning views of the city. There are many ways to get to this summit and behind the letters. These range from short and difficult to long and gentle (Exploring Griffith Park includes maps for hikers). But it’s worth it.
Hollyridge is considered as the best view of Hollywood sign
The Hollyridge Trail overlook from Beachwood Canyon was once one of the best view of Hollywood sign. But, due to the influx of tourists and the traffic into nearby residential canyons, lawsuits were filed, and the easy route was canceled. This vista point can still be reached via Canyon Drive. There is a small parking area, and the trail provides a beautiful front-facing view even if you don’t want to climb Mount Lee.
Griffith Park has been the backdrop for many films, TV shows, and commercials. But few spots in the park have been photographed as much as the Bronson Cave, located on Canyon Drive. The Batcave, a remnant of an old quarry, is probably best known for its appearance in the original TV series Batman. However, it was also featured in The Searchers and Army of Darkness. It also has one of the most dramatic best view of Hollywood sign’s endpoint.
Griffith Observatory, Berlin Forest
The official Hollywood Sign viewpoint in the city is located just outside of the Griffith Observatory. This beautiful landmark can be reached by public transport or parking lots. This official designation does not mean it is the best place to take photos. The angle of view is also not the best. You can find more shade and solitude in this area of the park if you want to visit it. The Berlin Forest is a small pine forest that was planted by German dignitaries.
Tiffany and Co. Foundation-Overlook
The Tiffany & Co. Foundation was among several large donors who helped to protect Cahuenga Peak’s habitat from development. They also added it to Griffith Park. A commemorative viewpoint was also constructed with stone slab seating along the Mount Hollywood Trail. It is located a little beyond the Berlin Forest. The Observatory is a wonderful spot to stop for a quick rest or to hike up to Mount Hollywood.
This photo shows the Captain’s Roost, which can be found a little further along the Mount Hollywood Trail. All items are labeled on the wayfinding signs that are posted along this trail.
Visiting Griffith Park: A Guide for Locals
In Casey Schreiner’s Discovering Griffith Park, A local guide gives detailed directions to these viewpoints and many others to enjoy by watching the best view of Hollywood sign. It also includes maps of Griffith Park. This is the first comprehensive guidebook for the world-famous park (240 pages). It includes tips and tricks on getting around, how to see the museums and other attractions, and detailed information about 33 hiking routes.