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Where can you see the “stars” even when the sun is shining? Hollywood is well known for plenty of star-gazing opportunities–places where the stars of yesterday are commemorated and the stars of today are easy to spot. Some are budget-friendly, while others are slightly more indulgent, but they’ll all help you get your star fix.
Walk of Fame
One of the best chances to see stars in Los Angeles is to let your feet show you the way. Talk a walk on Hollywood Boulevard and Vine Street, where you’ll discover the world-famous Hollywood Walk of Fame. This is the haute spot where you’ll find nearly 2,500 coral-pink terrazzo and brass stars embedded at 6-foot intervals and stretched over a combined 1.7 miles of sidewalk. But did you know they’re not all “stars”? The Apollo XI space mission is memorialized in four circular “moons” that signify the first Moon landing on each of the four corners at the intersection of Hollywood and Vine. Can you guess who is the only U.S. President to have a star on the Walk of Fame? That one’s pretty easy–Ronald Reagan. Honorees in 2011 include Oprah Winfrey, Kermit the Frog, Tina Fey, will.i.am, and Penelope Cruz. Want to nominate your favorite star? It’s not too late. You have until May 31. Click here to share the celebrity you want forever immortalized on the streets of L.A. New names will be announced in June.
Tours With a Touch of Paparazzi
Hollywood abounds with star-themed tours. And this year, it’s getting personal with not one but two new paparazzi-inspired tours.
The TMZ Tour, from CityPASS partner Starline Tours, will take you on a two-hour bus adventure to a few of the more infamous spaces and places where celebrities have made a name for themselves—in the tabloids, that is. You’ll see the secret spots where the Hollywood players play, and get the “in” on juicy nuggets about celebs from TMZ staffers.
Ever wondered what it would be like to be a celebrity photographer? Rolling With The Paparazzi lets you hang out with an honest-to-goodness star-chaser. Spend the day with celeb-centric shooters who know their Hilton from their Lohan and will let you keep up with a Kardashian. In this completely unscripted tour, up to three people are teamed up with a real-life paparazzi for three hours. At $150 a person, it’s not cheap, but if you want an authentic, exciting Hollywood experience, it might just be worth the money for you.
Just Another Day in Hollywood… Or Not?
Of course, you don’t want to miss Madame Tussaud’s, where you’ll see hundreds of your favorite celebrities in one place. They may not be walking or talking, but you’ll have a hard time remembering they’re made of wax as you wander through Hollywood parties, movie sets, and professional sporting events. Where else can you get your photo taken with Lady Gaga?
A Different Kind of Star
If you prefer astronomy over celebritology, you might want to head further south. San Francisco’s California Academy of Science is home to the Morrison Planetarium, the world’s largest all-digital dome. Thanks to immersive video technology, the dome seems to disappear when imagery is projected onto it, creating an experience more like flying than watching a movie. And speaking of stars, the latest Morris Planetarium show, ‘Life: A Cosmic Story’ is narrated by none other than Academy Award winning actress Jodie Foster.