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Los Angeles, California city skyline at sunset.

14 Things to Know About Living in Los Angeles

Moving to Los Angeles? La-La Land is home to world-class restaurants, beautiful beaches, amazing job opportunities, and so much more. If you’re considering living in the City of Angels, check out these 14 things to know about Los Angeles!

A Hub for Job Opportunities

Photo of Downtown Los Angeles from the Street. Photo by Instagram user @milly_felix81

Photo via @milly_felix81

Aspiring creatives aren’t the only ones who can carve out a career in Los Angeles—which has the largest entertainment and media industry in the nation! Those searching the Los Angeles job market for positions in industries like finance, healthcare, technology, bioscience, fine arts, and beyond can find opportunities in this megacity. Well-known companies like Snapchat, Google, Netflix, Buzzfeed, and many more are headquartered in the LA metro, but job-seekers can also find a variety of small businesses, start-ups, and gig-economy work in the area. This unique work culture in LA has many residents choosing to work from home, freelance, or otherwise forgo a traditional 9-to-5 job. In fact, the City of Angels is one of the best cities in the country for entrepreneurs.

LA Has a Unique Infrastructure

Due to its size and geographic position, Los Angeles has a unique, sway-proof infrastructure. Many buildings in LA are built to withstand earthquakes, which the city sees semi-frequently due to its location along the San Andreas Fault. Researching earthquake preparedness is a great idea before moving to Los Angeles—especially if you’re coming from somewhere without earthquakes. LA’s infrastructure is also designed to accommodate the city’s large population and its continued growth, with features like wide, multi-lane roadways throughout the city.

Plenty of Transportation Options

Los Angeles highway surrounded by green trees and Downtown buildings in distance. Photo by Instagram user @eforth

Photo via @eforth

Los Angeles is more spread out than other big cities, so getting around takes some time. While LA is notorious for traffic congestion, there are plenty of ways to stay out of it if you prefer not to drive. Many Angelinos with active lifestyles will bike or walk to destinations within their neighborhood or use ridesharing for further trips. Public transit is another popular option in Los Angeles, with robust bus, subway, and light rail systems that provide convenient access to the entire LA metro. If you have to drive, many businesses validate parking, which helps you save some cash. Also, many SoCal locals refer to interstates, highways, and freeways by the corresponding number, like “The 405,” instead of saying “I-405.”

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LA Neighborhoods for Every Lifestyle

The largest city in California, Los Angeles has nearly 300 neighborhoods and suburbs, as well as a variety of cultural niches like Chinatown, Thai Town, Little Tokyo, and more. Families moving to the City of Angels can plant roots in safe, affordable neighborhoods like Playa Vista or Encino, where they’ll find plenty of things to do and some of the best public schools in LA. Meanwhile, singles and young professionals appreciate living in close proximity to great shopping, restaurants, and nightlife in SoCal neighborhoods like Echo Park and Westwood. The cost of living and price points between Los Angeles neighborhoods varies, so while renting a home is popular in LA, there are several neighborhoods that are fine to buy a home in, too.

Excellent Education for All Ages

View of the USC Campus in Los Angeles. Photo by Instagram user @uscedu

Photo via @uscedu

Serving more than 1,000 public and private schools throughout the Los Angeles area, the Los Angeles Unified School District is the second largest district in the U.S. Institutions like Windward School and Polytechnic School provide great options for private schools in LA, and high-ranking Los Angeles public schools like La Canada High School and Granada Hills Charter are also available. Additionally, Los Angeles offers several higher education institutions. While the University of California-Los Angeles (UCLA) has ranked as the top public university in the country several times, California State University was named the best in the nation for providing upward mobility to its students. The University of Southern California (USC) is home to the prestigious Annenberg School for Communication and Journalism. Aspiring science and engineering students can enroll at the esteemed Caltech. And other specialized colleges like the American Film Institute and Fashion Institute of Design & Merchandising are also located in Los Angeles.

Spend Time in the Great Outdoors

Photo of Venice Beach During the Day. Photo by Instagram user @annestikvoort

Photo via @annestikvoort

Since LA gets sunny weather 284 days of the year, you can enjoy all the lavish parks, scenic hiking trails, and beautiful beaches year-round when you’re living in Los Angeles! Catch some waves, sunbathe, or wade in the water at amazing LA beaches like Malibu Surfrider Beach and El Porto Beach. Spend the day fishing or watching the annual Lotus Festival boat races at Echo Park Lake. Venture over to Runyon Canyon Park, a 160-acre park that offers several hiking trails and breathtaking views of the Los Angeles skyline. Find pet-friendly outdoor activities like visiting Rosie’s Dog Beach, where your pup can splash in the ocean and fetch on the sand. Looking to get active? Sign up to participate in the Los Angeles Marathon or cheer on the runners from the sidelines. Or catch a bite on the patio at one of LA’s many dog-friendly restaurants!

Endless Family Fun

Trying to find all-age activities in LA the whole family can enjoy? See the famous La Brea Tar Pits up close, as well as the many fossils that have been excavated from them over the years. Experience indoor and outdoor exhibits, including a collection of over 2,000 gems and more than 300 dinosaur fossils at the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County. Learn about the cosmos and gaze up at the beautiful, starry sky through the Zeiss Telescopes at Griffith Observatory! Ride the iconic Ferris wheel, hit up the arcade, browse beachside shops, and watch street performers at the Santa Monica Pier. Let your little ones learn and explore exhibits like Arroyo Adventure and Physics Forest at Kidspace Children’s Museum. Or see exotic animals from around the world, like elephants, tigers, and more, at the Los Angeles Zoo.

See Amazing Arts & Entertainment in LA

View Inside of the Broad Museum in Los Angeles. Photo by Instagram user @discoverla

Photo via @discoverla

While Los Angeles is known for its ties to the film industry, other forms of art and culture are celebrated in Tinseltown, too! Catch a symphony performance from the Los Angeles Philharmonic at Walt Disney Concert Hall. Watch a stunning pyrotechnic performance at the Hollywood Bowl. Enjoy live acts at The Music Center, a massive performing arts venue in Downtown Los Angeles where you can buy tickets for everything from ballet to musical theatre to opera. Admire Modernist paintings and contemporary photography at the largest art museum in the West, Los Angeles County Museum of Art. Art-lovers moving to Los Angeles will also enjoy the rotating contemporary exhibits at The Broad and Getty Museum. Find more murals, art installations, and statues throughout Los Angeles during downtown art walks. Visit the Hollyhock House, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, or see the works of up-and-coming artists at the Los Angeles Municipal Art Gallery at Barnsdall Art Park.

Cheer on Your Favorite LA Sports Teams

LeBron James Playing Against the Golden State Warriors. Photo by Instagram user @lakers

Photo via @lakers

With multiple professional teams based in the area, it’s not surprising that sports are a big part of living in Los Angeles. Head to the famous Crypto.com Arena (formerly the Staples Center) to catch the Los Angeles Lakers (NBA), Los Angeles Clippers (NBA), and Los Angeles Sparks (WNBA) dribbling on the court—or the Los Angeles Kings (NHL) shredding the ice. Go wild with the crowd when the Los Angeles Galaxy (MLS) score at Dignity Health Sports Park. See the Los Angeles Football Club (LAFC) (MLS) score goals on their home turf at Banc of California Stadium. Cheer on home teams Los Angeles Rams (NFL) and Los Angeles Chargers (NFL) at SoFi Stadium. Or watch a play-off game between teams from across the country at Rose Bowl Stadium, also known as “America’s Stadium.” Be sure to sport blue and support six-time World Series champions Los Angeles Dodgers (MLB) at Dodger Stadium.

Visit Hollywood

Photo of the Universal Studios Globe. Photo by Instagram user @unistudios

Photo via @unistudios

Home to Hollywood—often called “The Entertainment Capital of the World“—LA is the main hub for America’s film and entertainment industry. The city houses major production studios like Paramount Pictures, Universal Studios, and Warner Bros, which not only produce box office hits but are also great LA attractions to visit on a tour or as a studio audience member! Find more things to do in Hollywood like the Hollywood Wax Museum, where you can take photos with wax celebrities. See the nearly 3,000 stars honoring the accomplishments of Hollywood achievers on the Hollywood Walk of Fame. Or look for your favorite star’s handprints and footprints, or watch current releases as well as special showings and events at the TCL Chinese Theatre, also known as Grauman’s Chinese Theatre.

Stay On-Trend with LA Fashion

Shops Lined on Rodeo Drive. Photo by Instagram user @rodeodrive

Photo via @rodeodrive

In terms of fashion, Los Angeles runs the gamut—from runway collections designed by Oscar de la Renta to quirky finds in vintage clothing stores. Covering 100 blocks, the LA Fashion District offers an extensive variety of independently-owned stores. Be sure to also check out over 150 retailers at The Santee Alley, an open-air shopping corridor in LA’s Fashion District. Head to Rodeo Drive and shop at luxury retailers like Jimmy Choo or Prada. Find more designer brands when you visit Third Street Promenade. Check out everything from name-brand fashion to one-of-a-kind street clothes at Sunset Strip. Fashion lovers moving to Los Angeles can also attend events like LA Fashion Week and many other fashion shows throughout the year.

Shop at LA Farmers Markets

People moving to LA can expect to see plenty of farmers markets. The Original Farmers Market and Grand Central Market are some of the most well-known markets in the city—with produce vendors, drink stands, sit-down restaurants, and candy shops galore—but nearly every Los Angeles neighborhood has its own unique farmers market. Listen to live music while picking out delectable sweet corn at the Hollywood Farmers Market. Take your kids to the petting zoo after enjoying some artisanal bread at the Studio City Farmers Market. Or pick up new arrangements in LA’s Flower District when you visit the Flower Market, the largest wholesale flower market in the U.S.

Sample World-Class Cuisine

Breakfast plates with pulled pork hash, buttermilk pancakes, fried chicken and waffles from Poppy and Rose in Los Angeles. Photo by Instagram user @poppyandrosela

Photo via @poppyandrosela

Finding new places to eat will never be an issue when you’re living in Los Angeles, which has nearly 30,000 restaurants! If you’re a fan of breakfast food and tasty cocktails, order the Lumberjack Breakfast with a Sunrise Mimosa at Poppy+Rose. Try the Dirty Chili Dog with a side of Horchata Ice Cream at Dirt Dog. Eat authentic Italian dishes like fresh-made Bolognese and Tiramisu at Pasta Sisters. Savor Musso’s Flannel Cakes and Filet Mignon at the acclaimed Musso & Frank Grill. Have a date night with unique dishes like Lobster Pop Tarts and Kimchi Steak Tartare in a quirky, yet upscale atmosphere at Barton G. The Restaurant. Foodies will also love exploring great cuisine from around the world, from Chinatown eateries to mouthwatering spots throughout Little Armenia and beyond. Head to Koreatown for some delicious Korean BBQ at spots like Daedo Sikdang, where the Daedo Bulgogi is a must-try. Or treat yourself to an Omakase Course with some of the best sushi in Los Angeles at Takeda.

Enjoy an Amazing Nightlife & Bar Scene

People Celebrating at a Bar Holding Up Shot Glasses. Photo by Instagram user @boulevard3la

Photo via @boulevard3la

LA has a variety of fun bars and nightlife spots where you can catch up with friends, grab drinks with coworkers, or dance the night away. Check out scenic views of Los Angeles, have a blast on the electric dance floor, and savor delicious drinks at The Rooftop. Dance to a mix of Latin tunes, Billboard hits, and other high-energy music at the Mayan Night Club. Go to the Showgirls drag show every Monday at Micky’s West Hollywood. Visit three venues in one night when you experience the Hollywood Club Crawl. Enjoy themed cocktails like The Joker or The Lover at a playful, vintage venue, The Little Friend. Or sip on a Sunbather sour ale and get a group of friends together for trivia night at one of the top LA hotspots for craft beer at Angel City Brewery.

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Are you moving to LA? Extra Space Storage has several storage facilities throughout the Los Angeles metro that can help with your transition. Find self storage near you!

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