Star-studded streets and sun-soaked promenades aren’t just an LA thing. These cities also have their own share of pizzazz.
Los Angeles has many names: the City of Angels, the entertainment capital of the world, Hollywood, the Big Orange, and our favourite – La La Land.
Other cities may not have such colourful nicknames, but they do offer some of the features that make LA such an iconic celebrity hub, such as yawning tree-lined beachfronts, a lavish lifestyle and a wealth of entertainment options. So whether you're after a beachside city break or are hoping to spot celebrities in some of the city's chicest boutiques, here's where to go.
1. Gold Coast
Sand, surf, theme parks and movie studios are what the Gold Coast is all about. Sound familiar?
Those seeking an LA vibe closer to home need only travel to the sun-drenched city of the Gold Coast. Like the City of Angels, it’s a playground packed with parties, beautiful beach bodies, high-end boutiques and amusement parks. It is also home to the Village Roadshow Movie Studio, so the area is a popular filming location.
- Best beaches: Surfers Paradise, Broadbeach, Main Beach, Kirra Beach and North Burleigh
- Must see: Warner Bros. Movieworld, Dreamworld, Seaworld, Wet’N’Wild, WhiteWater World, Jupiters Hotel and Casino, and the Gold Coast hinterland
2. San Diego
A few hours south of Los Angeles, San Diego shares the a similar coastal vibe to LA but without as much glitz and glamour.
The similarities between these two cities are endless: Los Angeles has Santa Monica Beach, San Diego has Mission Beach; LA has Rodeo Drive, San Diego has the Gaslamp Quarter; LA has Olvera Street for Mexican fare, San Diego has it everywhere.
- Best beaches: Mission Beach, Pacific Beach, Moonlight Beach, Coronado Beach and Ocean Beach
- Must see: San Diego Zoo, San Diego Zoo Safari Park, Balboa Park, SeaWorld and Belmont Park
Located in the Sunshine State of the US, there’s no better weather than in Miami, and the A-listers know it.
Fringed with palm trees and a long stretch of white sand, Miami draws in beautiful people in droves. They come for the beach, trendsetting nightclubs and resort hotels. What’s more, Disneyworld and a beachside city called Hollywood are both within reach. Twin cities, perhaps?
- Best beaches: Bell Harbour Beach, South Beach, Sunny Isles Beach and Homestead Bayfront Park Beach
- Must see: Jungle Island, Zoo Miami, Venetian Pool, Coral Castle and Big Baggs Cape Florida State Park
May is the season for celebrity spotting in Cannes. It’s when pretty much all of Hollywood trips over one another to get to this glamorous city for the esteemed Cannes International Film Festival.
The French Riviera boasts more than its fair share of decadent resort towns and Cannes is one of its finest. Hollywood types have been flocking to its glorious beachfront hotels and exuberant restaurants for decades. Time to join them, no?
- Best beaches: Cannes Beach (C Beach), Plage Mace, Plage Zamenhoff and Plages de la Bocca
- Must see: Promenade de la Croisette, Lérins Islands, Ile Saint-Honorat and Brague
5. New York City and The Hamptons
If you don’t spot your favourite celebrity swanning around their Hollywood home in LA, they’re probably prancing around their New York or Hamptons house instead.
New York City is a sensory explosion. Among the craze of its busy streets and high-end boutiques, it’s the second best place to catch a glimpse of celebrities in their natural environment. During summer, do as they do and hightail it to The Hamptons. Located on the east end of Long Island, this resort outpost is home to high society and yellow, sandy beaches.
- Best beaches: Coopers Beach, Main Beach, Ditch Plains Beach and Atlantic Beach
- Must see: Statue of Liberty, Empire State Building, Rockefeller Centre, Madison Square Gardens and Broadway
OK, you caught us. London doesn’t have sunshine, or beaches, but if you’re looking to fangirl or fanboy it up, it is Europe’s answer to Hollywood.
Like Los Angeles, London is a star-studded city. The West End boasts dozens of theatres where you can watch some of the world’s hottest stars perform live, while in Leicester Square you can rub shoulders with red carpet walkers at the latest movie premieres.
- Best beaches: None, but it has a large range of beautiful parks
- Must see: Tower Bridge, Tower of London, Big Ben, Buckingham Palace and the British Museum
Where the rich come to play.
Splashing out in Dubai isn’t a suggestion, it’s an expectation. This city of architectural masterpieces is one of the most luxurious in the world, and features numerous resorts and hatted restaurants where you can wine and dine alongside society’s rich and famous.
- Best beaches: Sunset Beach, Jumeirah Beach (JBR Beach), Kite Beach, Black Palace Beach and Hidden Beach
- Must see: Burj Khalifa, Burj Al Arab, Palm Islands, Dubai Marina and The World
When in India, the place to seek fame and fortune is Bollywood.
Bollywood is the nickname given to the film industry in Mumbai, aka Bombay. This city is the world’s largest producer of films in terms of quantity, churning out thousands of movies every year. If you’re a fan of their colourful and romantic stories, you’ll love wandering through the backdrops in this stunning city.
- Best beaches: Girgaum Chowpatty Beach, Juhu Beach, Dadar Chowpatty and Marve Beach
- Must see: Gateway of India, Elephanta Caves, Siddhivinayak Temple and EsselWorld