We all know there is little else I find better than living (and loving, and loathing) in the city of LA. While I love exploring the globe I love coming home to California and the City of Angels the most. Facts are facts, the West Coast is simply the “Best Coast”.
I moved to Southern California/LA from the Bay Area almost 15 years ago, and what I love most about living in Los Angeles. This is besides the Dodgers, palm trees, the beach, and never-ending sunshine… is the space this city holds for folks with dreams, a palpable appreciation for creation, and the ever-present feeling of possibility.
Wanna hear a quick lovesong for Los Angeles? Check out this “Love Letter To Los Angeles” video/Reel I created and shared on Instagram. It STILL makes me emotional and I’m the one who made it!
But if the written word is more your vibe for the moment, I still love this journey for you. Here are a few more things I consider to be “the best things about living in LA”:
The Best Things About Living In LA
THE UNIQUENESS OF EACH NEIGHBORHOOD
If you were to take a drive through Los Angeles, going all around different neighborhoods, every zip code is like going through a separate city. Every borough is known for something that it brings to the table. They offering you different kinds of architecture, cuisine, nightlife, morning life, etc. While this list could go on, I’ll highlight a few of the most notable areas of the city so you can get a taste of just how different they really are.
Beachtown, USA! The coast of Los Angeles is arguably the most sought-after when it comes to real estate. Also when it comes to spending your time. Santa Monica offers a beach vibe mixed with a little bit of tourism. You can hit the pier or walk along 3rd Street Promenade for some shopping. Then, hit the coastline for some dinner with a view.
Venice is more laid back where it offers you shopping with a side of eclecticism. A bike shop will be found right next door to a homemade donut shop that’s next door to the best restaurant in the city. The boardwalk offers some of the best people-watching and little booths where you can support local artists.
Malibu is the high-end version of both Santa Monica and Venice combined, offering four dollar sign restaurants overlooking the water and one dollar sign Pacific Coast highway road stops. There’s nothing quite like a drive up the PCH on a Saturday morning, stopping only to grab a fresh lobster roll on the side of the highway. Our beach towns offer some of the best beaches in the USA and when you visit during certain times of the day, you can almost convince yourself that it’s your best-kept secret.
Hollywood Blvd. continues to be what it has been for over 100 years. Known for the Hollywood Walk of Fame, the TCL Chinese Theatre, and generally being packed with people enjoying the California sun, there is a comfort here: knowing that everyone loves to be a tourist once and a while, and here that’s A-OK. Celebrity spotting is easier here during movie premiers and cast parties, happy hour is a staple in every bar, and parking is as much as an adventure as your entire night out will be. I don’t find myself here often, but I do find comfort in the fact that it won’t change on me and whenever I do wander over to this part of town, I’ll pick up right where I left off.
You know that one song by that one band about this neighborhood? ‘Beverly Hills, that’s where I want to be!’ It’s true, it is indeed, where I want to be. Well known for jaw-dropping real estate and the beautiful Rodeo drive, this part of town is just as stunning as it is expensive. The best part is though, some of the cities most delicious gems can be found here, especially if you want to sip a cocktail poolside at the Beverly Hills Hotel without dishing out $$$ for a room stay. It’s a borough full of inspiration, from the cars to the daily activities to the people.
FOR MORE ON NEIGHBORHOODS: “MOVING TO LOS ANGELES GUIDE”
THE ACTIVITIES AVAILABLE AT YOUR FINGERTIPS
There is definitely no lack of things to do in this city and it’s one of the best things about living here – there is always something to be doing. I’m much more of a grab a cocktail and enjoy the sunshine type of gal, but for the explorers, athletes, and more low-key people, there is L I T E R A L L Y something for everyone in LA – even the most obscure of interests have a home here, trust me!
Bike paths and bike-share systems
The ability to take a bike from one end of the city to the next without owning one is a pretty amazing luxury. You can swipe a card and get charged for only what you ride, then drop it at the next lock station with no worries of your property ever being stolen. The city is very bike-friendly in that there’s a lane for bikers on the road and bike lock stations everywhere you turn. You might hear a beep or two but that’s just the way driving in Los Angeles is always going to be. The bike paths not on the road happen to be right next to the ocean, so whichever one you choose, you’ll get to see a lot of the better parts of the city from the comfort of your cruiser. Who needs a convertible anyway?
Green Spaces and Parks
The city comes alive in the Spring and Summertime and the use of the green spaces in LA are some of the biggest signs that either season has sprung. Picnics, lunch breaks on the terrace, or simply ten minutes of grounding while you talk on the phone, you can find a green space in almost every borough of the city. Fair warning: watch out for dog poop, as some people don’t always follow the rules. If you can dodge the poo, it’s worth it to grab a to-go lunch at your favorite deli, a bottle of wine from the store, and get together with some of your favorite people to make a new favorite memory.
Farmers & Flea Markets
Fresh food! Art! Furniture! Live music! People watching! This weekend activity will never get old and that’s probably why entire stadiums are rented out to celebrate this pastime. Whether you live here or are visiting, the cities flea markets are some of the best in the 50 states and are a must-see. You never know what kind of souvenirs you can pick up and the gems just keep coming back around. As a city that prides itself on offering some of the best produce money can buy, a quick stop at a farmers market can set you up to enjoy some of nature’s best candy, as well as some other fun, delicious, homemade things. What’s there not to love?
Hikes in Los Angeles are a rite of passage. Saturday morning hangover? A hike will cure that. Early morning workout? A hike is the perfect option. Visiting the city and want the most ideal view? Hiking is the way! Anyone and everyone hike the hills of the city and you may even spot your favorite celebrity is you’re into that kind of thing. Just be sure to bring some good ‘ol H20. There’s a lot of breezy hiking terrain here, but it can get HOT and there have been many-a-times when people underestimate the hills and need helicopters to escort them home.
NEED SOME MORE ACTIVITIES INSPO? CHECK OUT MY “101 THINGS TO CHECK OFF YOUR LA BUCKET LIST“
Los Angeles became part of the United States of America in 1850. That means there are over 170 years of rich history that this city has to offer. Around every corner, you can count on there being a story as to why something was built or how a restaurant came to be. It leaves so much to be learned and excited about while also providing plenty of inspiration of how far we’ve come and how far we can go.
The first opening day at Dodgers Stadium was in 1962. It cost around $23 million to build (which, back then, was a LOT of money…. Just as it is now) and has been home to the Los Angeles Dodgers ever since that first opening day. This stadium is a home away from home for me, and while it holds so many memories for me personally, I can only imagine all that has gone down within the walls of this stadium (including but not limited to 7 World Series titles).
Grand Central Market
Since 1917, this monumental market has been serving up food and drink to its patrons while simultaneously cementing history with each passing year. This spot offers so much diversity to the city in that it celebrates all different kinds of cuisines and stores that reside within Los Angeles. It has evolved along with Downtown LA and still has held its promise to celebrate food and community. I include this in my list of places to visit if you’re a first-timer or if you live here because it has a little bit of everything: history, food, and people. What else do we need?
The Hollywood Sign
The Hollywood Sign was born in 1923. It’s seen some of the cities best days, along with some of the worst. This has been a staple of the city, acting as a well-known tourist destination and a global market for others to know exactly where we are on a map. It’s had a couple of different iterations, becoming Hollywood from what used to be Hollywoodland as well as having to be rebuilt a few times due to weather and vandalism. There is a surrounding hike and the views will take your breath away. You can hop, skip, and jump over to the Griffith Observatory to look up at the stars or create an itinerary for someone visiting over a long weekend. It’s a great part of Los Angeles County history, but it also stands as a sign that perseverance will help keep you afloat and better days are always ahead.
VARIETY IN EVERYTHING.
Variety is the name of the game in Los Angeles. From the people, architecture, landscapes, cultures, cuisines, entertainment, to the weather – there’s not much this city doesn’t have to offer. LA is truly the city that “never has a dull moment”, and for me, that’s worth loving alone.
LA is the melting pot of all melting pots, and the connection, creation, and appreciation that comes from so many backgrounds converging is absolutely beautiful. Who needs travel when you have LA? (Kidding, kind of.)
There’s never going to be enough space in any blog post for me to cover just how much variety of food is offered in this city. I already feel like there’s not enough time to eat my way through this city, but I will never stop trying. You will find any cuisine your heart desires here in this city – some that were even born here! There is a new and exciting restaurant opening every it feels like; it may be a bold statement but i think LA is the best city in the US for foodies.
Sun, sun, sun, a cloud, sun. This pretty much sums up the weather in sunny SoCal. All joking aside, it does change from 75 and sunny sometimes, and a rainy day is more than needed every few weeks or so. The droughts have been long-standing in this city, so appreciating another day of sun is a bit bittersweet, but aside from that, the weather cannot be beaten. Most of the time, it’s not too cold and it’s not too hot. Beach days are almost year-round and that fresh Californian breeze is available 24/7, 365.
It seems impossible, but it really is true that in LA you have access to the beach, the mountains, the desert, and the city (DTLA we’ll call it) within crazy close proximity. I’d say 90 mins max. To me, that simple fact is worth it all alone.
Los Angeles is one of those cities where you don’t absolutely *need* a car. Similar to other commuter cities, it can be easier to have one and other times, you’ll be grateful you don’t. You can take a bus pretty much anywhere. Take a train to other bigger cities, the metro, under or above ground, Lyft and Uber, bike. Definitely, the modes of transportation offer anyone who moves here a way to get around and see the city if they so please and that is a beautiful thing.
Art is EVERYWHERE in LA! It’s what helps make this city so beautiful! From the vast variety in architecture down to the abundance of vibrant street art… LA is one creative and eclectic town.
3.967 million, to be exact. It’s a melting pot of people with big dreams. I love that there are different neighborhoods to offer people exactly what they want. Also, I love that the people watching is available 24/7. I love that you can meet your soulmate, all five of them, all in the span of a decade. I love that people are willing to work and evolve to become better for themselves and their neighbors. It’s a city full of hope and love. All of that wouldn’t nearly be possible if it weren’t for the people who reside here. I’m proud to be from California and I’m so thrilled to have been a resident of this beautiful city for the past decade. What it’s offered me only makes me that much more excited for what the next decade will hold.
FEEL FREE TO ALSO CHECK OUT ANOTHER POST OF MINE : “WHY WE LOVE LIFE IN LA LA LAND”
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