When you think about Pasadena, CA probably only one thing comes to mind – ok, two things: The Rose Parade and the Rose Bowl. This post is all about Pasadena as a travel destination, even when it might not be not New Years Day.
Pasadena is one of the oldest cities in LA. And is home to one of the most gorgeous city halls. If you watched the “Parks & Rec” TV show, the outside of Pawnee City Hall is really Pasadena city hall. Inside, lovely architecture awaits those who wander its halls.
But I’m getting off track. Recently, we went to Pasadena as part of a quick getaway trip. Yeah, we went in summer. And yes, it was super hot. However, we had such a good time that I knew I had to share this secret gem with you. Of course I wanted to share the things we enjoyed best while we were in Pasadena, just in case you are convinced you should spend time there too.
So, I have made a list of things to do, restaurants to partake in, just for my readers. Since this is for a quick getaway, I’ve only listed my top 4 recommendations of things to do. These would be a great start to a weekend itinerary spent in Pasadena. Check out my recommendations and notes below!
1. Great Maple Restaurant
We went here for brunch one morning, and it was so delicious! If the weather is nice, opt to eat outside where they have a nice covered terrace. We had very friendly service and we will definitely be trying it again.
2. LA County Arboretum
While this is in Arcadia, it is only a few minutes from Pasadena. This was a lovely place to take the little one, who enjoyed looking at all the different plants. It’s a really large park and has tons of gardens and trails. Many Peacocks make the gardens their home. And they are very entertaining to watch!
While we were visiting we stumbled across a TV show set on the grounds. It was amazing to see how much equipment goes into filming one scene for one TV episode. There were at least 3 trucks full of lights, fans, and cameras. What a production! Haha!
3. 21 Choices
What could be more delicious or dangerous than a frozen yogurt place that puts potato chips in one of their signature mixes? It’s a wonderful combination of salty, and sweet. Like Coldstone, they mix in your toppings on a frozen counter top. You can even make up your own flavor combo. This is the perfect stop while walking in Old Town Pasadena.
4. Old Town Pasadena Shopping
Charming Old Town Pasadena has many opportunities for shopping. There are stores like H&M, Tiffany’s, and Zara lining the infamous Colorado Blvd. If you are looking for more shopping, head to the outdoor mall named Paseo Colorado. If you can’t find what you’re looking for after those two stops, you probably passed right by what you were looking for. They have everything here!