All About LA Guide to LA

The LA Girl’s 8 Reasons to Love Los Angeles

View of Downtown Los Angeles From Elysian Park

Los Angeles is my favorite city in the world, and I’m proud to call it home. To kick things off, let’s start off with my top 8 Reasons to Love Los Angeles. After talking to a bunch of travelers, transplants and other locals, I find that this list pretty much sums it up. The places, people, weather, accessibility, location and of course, the personalities, make LA such an amazing and unique place to be.

1. There is always something to do in Los Angeles and people around to do it with.

Cocktail at Perch in Downtown Los Angeles

Having a cocktail at Perch, in Downtown Los Angeles

For Non 9-5ers:
There are many people in Los Angeles who don’t have a regular office job, so the city makes sure there are things to entertain those who aren’t at work. There are yoga classes all day at Liberation Yoga and dance classes at the Edge.

To meet other people:
Join a Meetup group! There are mommy groups, ladies who lunch, retired hikers, happy hour clubs, and entrepreneur workshops going on. If you want to socialize and meet new people, there are so many different groups that you can choose based on age, sex, culture, and interest.

Tennis and other sports:
I’ve also had amazing luck with finding tennis partners on Tennisopolis.  As a partner sport, it’s kind of hard for me to find motivation to play without someone hitting the ball back. I’ve met several tennis partners that I’ve continued to be friends with, even if we don’t play tennis anymore (they ended up moving to other not-so-cool places).

2. You don’t have to spend a lot of money to have a great time.

Free Jazz at LACMA in Los Angeles

Free Jazz at LACMA in Los Angeles on Friday nights

The cost of living in Los Angeles is already a concern for most, but besides paying for rent, parking, and expensive car insurance – you can take advantage of free and low-cost activities to keep you, your partner, family, friends, and visiting relatives entertained. Every neighborhood hosts a myriad of community events to get everyone involved and help people stay active.

To find events:
When I have friends visiting, I always check out what’s happening through LAist,  LA Weekly, Experience LA, and Discover Los Angeles. These sites all have an easy-to-use calendar so you can search by date, type of event, and neighborhood.

For discounted tickets to music, theater, and fun events:
I am also signed up for Goldstar which offers discounted tickets to events closer to the event date. I’ve been able to purchase half price tickets to shows at the Pantages Theater or concerts at the Hollywood Bowl, without paying the full price.

3. It’s always sunny in… Los Angeles. And when it’s not, stay inside and try not to drive.

View of Downtown Los Angeles From Elysian Park

View of Downtown Los Angeles From Elysian Park

I know you’re tired of hearing this, but once you visit or go back to someplace cold – you’ll be wishing for LA weather. Our lovely year-round weather is the reason why so many people move here, visit, and can’t ever leave! The sun is shining 96% of the time and you can always find cooler weather at the beach and mountains. And when it does rain, you’ll tend to notice a different vibe. There will be more traffic and lots of road rage, so try to stay off the streets – for your own sanity.

4. There’s plenty of outdoor activities for you to enjoy, besides lying around on the beach.

Sunset at Hermosa Beach in Los Angeles

Playing around with handstands at sunset in Hermosa Beach, Los Angeles

If you’re outdoorsy like me, LA has enough coastline, mountain ranges, deserts, and lakes, within a reasonable distance to keep you entertained. The Modern Hiker is a great resource that clearly lists all the hikes in the surrounding areas with helpful pictures and directions to find trail heads, length and duration, difficulty, and useful tips. I know many people who plan hiking trips on the weekend. The change of scenery is so refreshing, and many describe feeling as if they are “far away, and not even in Los Angeles.”

5. You can take advantage of the many empty seats on flights leaving from LAX.

LAX Airport in Los Angeles

LAX Airport in Los Angeles

As a huge city, LAX flights go anywhere in the world and with so many, there always so many travel deals that you can take advantage of. I use Kayak and Momondo, usually on Tuesday and Wednesday morning –often times in the middle of the night, to score on amazing flight and hotel deals. If you get the timing right, you can score flights to Honolulu for around $300 or an all-inclusive deal to Cabo for under $500.

6. Only have a day, or two to take a short trip? LA is close enough to so many travel destinations to take a mini-vacay. 

Los Angeles to Las Vegas weekend getaway

Las Vegas, a short trip away from Los Angeles

If your job or any circumstances makes it difficult for you to travel and take lots of time off from work, LA is just a short distance away from so many great destinations.

Towards the Northeast:
I remember going to Las Vegas as early as age 5. With Sin City being only 4 hours away (3.5 if you’re really excited), it’s no wonder why my friends sometimes decide to do an impromptu road trip at 4pm on a Friday. As a Total Rewards Club member,  I get discounted hotel rates at any of their hotels/casinos and often times get offered free stays. If you’re sick of the normal Vegas experience of gambling, clubbing, and shows, there are lots of other things to do in Las Vegas – look for tips in my upcoming posts. 

Towards the South:
If you’re in the mood for some laid-back beach time, San Diego is only 1.5-2 hours away south. An hour or so drive gets you to Carlsbad, if the kids want to visit Legoland. This also gets you down to La Jolla, which is one of the most romantic spots for a weekend getaway. I have a good friend that visits her mom in Mexico on some weekends. With the border so close, you can leave the country in less than 3 hours!

Towards the East:
For some sun and relaxation, a short trip east to Palm Springs gives you access to some natural hot springs and adults-only resorts. I especially enjoyed Two Bunch Palms, which was once owned by Al Pacino,  that has a “whisper” voice volume rule in most areas, to ensure the maximum amount of peace and relaxation for guests. Their main attraction, the grotto, is a natural hot spring that reaches temperatures of 85 degrees.

Towards the North:
If you’re up for a bit more driving, you can go wine tasting in Santa Barbara, have fresh oysters in Morro Bay, or watch the sunset in Santa Cruz. And if you’ve made it all the way there, you might as well visit San Francisco! The list of short trips and weekend getaways is very long, and you can read more in my upcoming posts.

7. The food. Enough said.

There are a billion and one food options in this city and nobody can ever say otherwise. There are always new places popping up in Downtown LA, the Westside and pretty much every neighborhood. Koreatown is a new happening neighborhood for foodies, and you can’t beat the Chinese food in the SGV (San Gabriel Valley). People love standing in line at Eggslut in Grand Central Market and for ramen at every Daikokuya location. Visit my section on foods to find my Top 8 Lists on my favorite places to eat in Los Angeles.

8. It’s one of the few places where it is socially acceptable to have multiple business cards with different job titles, and not be a con artist.

Extreme outdoor yoga in Griffith Park, Los Angeles

Gwen, The LA Girl/Writer/Extreme Yogi

Everyone can have as many job titles, and it’s not strange! Los Angeles is a mecca for creative types, and there are teachers who are actors, models who are dog walkers, tech guys who are singers, and even bankers who are filmmakers. It makes a city even more interesting, when its population consists of people who are doing more than one thing, and always striving to live a dream- sometimes even two or three. Los Angeles is the place to be whether you dream of making it in the entertainment industry, or you’re looking for a community where you can express your creativity and individuality. Whatever it is you’re looking for and how ever long you will be here, I hope to make your stay a little more interesting.

Do you have more reasons to love Los Angeles? Comment below and tell me more!