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Los Angeles 101

June 1, 2011 | Author: | Posted in Travel and Leisure

First of all, forget everything you know about Los Angeles (LA). Forget the Hollywood sign, LAX, even Beverley Hills Cop. Now let’s take a look at LA the same way we would if we were going to Rome or Tokyo. What is there to see and do? What is the culture like? Why should you go there? There are lots of reasons!

Los Angeles was found in 1781 by Spanish governor Felipe de Neve. The city became a part of Mexico in 1821, but was then purchased along with what is now California, in 1848. Two years later LA was incorporated as a city, and five months after that California achieved statehood. The strong Spanish influence of the region’s history still makes its mark today, as 48.5% of the population is Latino. The entire population sits at about 3.8 million, making it the second most populated city in the US, behind New York City. LA is divided into 80 districts and neighborhoods, but many outlying and independent cities are grouped in with Los Angeles because they have been engulfed by the city’s expansion. For example the Hollywood Hills, Venice Beach and Bel Air are all separate, but grouped in with LA.

The climate of LA is categorized as subtropical-Mediterranean, and therefore received about 35 days of precipitation per year. Within the central area of LA there is a micro-climate due to the thick layer of smog that keeps warm air down around the surface. Snow is extremely rare in the city center, but higher elevations in outlying areas do experience flurries once in awhile. LA is located in an active earthquake zone, but the frequent and minor tremors are harmless as they are key elements in the slow release of pressure from the earth’s core.

Los Angeles is often referred to as The Most Creative City in the World because one in three people living there works in a creative industry. Countless actors, musicians, artists, writers, filmmakers, dancers and cartoonists have flocked to the city in the past hundred years; all in search of success. That reason alone is enough for some culture enthusiasts to visit the city. As the undoubted film making capitol of the world, LA is the place to go for a celebrity sighting or chance encounter. The Academy Awards are held there each year, along with a number of other awards shows.

If live theater is more what you seek, there are over 1100 dramatic, musical or dance productions held every year and 21 openings per week. Or, choose from the whopping 841 museums and galleries in the city, including the world renowned Museum of Contemporary Art, the Getty Center and the Los Angeles Museum of Art. There are so many more, it would be impossible to list them all.

The culture of LA is diverse. Sure, there is a strong Spanish flavor, but there is also artistry, expression, commerce, scenery, bustle, warmth and variety. It would be impossible to properly cover every element of LA here, so why not go there? See for yourself that there is something for everyone in Los Angeles.

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