Los Angeles: The Farmers Market & The Grove
The Original Farmers Market is the place you need to eat. Especially if you have a large group of people. It's essentially a cooler food court than any you'd see inside a mall because your choices are not limited to fast food chains like McDonalds. It's like having a collection of fancy food truck choices in one area. My family and I have eaten at Monsieur Marcel a number of times for special occasions (they're a little pricier than some other restaurants in the market) and also includes their own little grocery store.
Lotería Grill is another favorite. Along with the French Crêpe Company for their sweet and savory crepes. There are other ethnic food options from bakery items to sweets to actual meals. You can never go wrong with a good old American doughnut at Bob's Coffee & Doughnuts.
Some of the places in the market are cash only, so check before you order. There's also several ATM's in the marketplace that you can get cash from.
If you're feeling like going inside (even if it's raining though, you're covered by umbrellas here), Du-Par's is one of my favorite pancake places ever.
All the merchants and restaurants are listed here.
If you plan on driving to the Farmers Market (which is most convenient), you can park in one of the two closest lots and get your ticket validated for 2 hours free.
Once you've gotten a full belly, and checked out some of the other little shops at the market, you can cross over into The Grove (look out for one of the angels of Los Angeles hidden in the market area when you go into The Grove).
The Grove is more centered on shopping, with some more high-end eateries or sweet eating places sprinkled in such as Sprinkles Cupcakes. There's an Anthropolgie, an Apple store, Topshop, Gap, some designer stores... you can check all the choices here.
I'm not a huge shopper unless I'm in need of something specific, so really I just like to go on the free trolley that will take you through the space. You can ride below or get a different view on top. And the fountain at the end where The Grove loops around, has a little show every once in a while.
Between the Original Farmers Market, the trolley ride, shopping, maybe catching a movie and eating some more at The Grove or hanging out in the Apple store, this venture can take an hour to a half day trip.
Bonus: if you want to get a free ticket to go on The Price is Right (which is more like at least a half-day event because you need to get there early, and then you wait around for a couple hours) you can also budget some time to walk over the The Grove or Farmers Market because they're right next door to the CBS Studio. (I have personal experience in doing this — it was tiring but a lot of fun to see the behind-the-scenes of a show I grew up with.)