Elysian Park doesn’t get the due it deserves and most are fine with that.
Mind you this isn’t the first time I’ve written about Elysian Park, but each time I go I get a different perspective.
Overlooking Downtown Los Angeles, this park has a number of views that are larger than life because you don’t expect to be this centered in a city of this side.
Surrounded by Chinatown, Echo Park and the Elysian Valley, there’s a number of ways to access Elysian, but all of them involve climbing.
Griffith Park -> Elysian Park
Dodger Stadium is scenically placed alongside, but you can obviously notice by its insertion how it altered the local community in not the most positive way.
From a modern perspective, Stadium Way virtually splits the park in two as this high speed cut through has no infrastructure in place for people who walk and bike to cross.
With all these updates, it’s hard to imagine this is the City’s oldest park, but if you go digging enough you can find clues.
From a cycling perspective, the winding roads make Elysian feel bigger than it actually is and it’s one of the best places where the views help you comprehend the many neighborhoods of Los Angeles.
Riding through the row of palm trees frames your view
Looking to the southeast portion of the park, you’ll find the biggest selection of roads that also leads to the best views.
Elysian Park’s helipad in of itself gives a larger than life perspective on DTLA.
The LA River Path also lies just to the east making a good connection to the Valley while Sunset Blvd to the west gets you into Downtown or north to Los Feliz.
Save for big weekends and Dodger games, the park is quieter than you expect and a great place to step away from the urban fabric.
There are a few other spots to ride in Elysian Park I didn’t highlight, but there’s a lot more variety than you think…
…just don’t tell too many others about it.