There’s more truth to the notion that the City of Los Angeles is just a loose network of suburbs than we’d like to admit, but that doesn’t stop us from loving its neighborhoods all the same. As the second-largest metropolitan center in America, L.A. plays host to the full spectrum of people, who have carved out niches for themselves and their like-minded peers. Whether your tastes run luxurious or laid-back, you’ll find a neighborhood where you can feel right at home.
Downtown

Downtown L.A. used to be a concrete jungle that visitors and residents alike were eager to skip, but it’s recently redeemed itself to become one of the hottest neighborhoods in the city. Iconic buildings like Grand Central Market and the Walt Disney Concert Hall, as well as cutting-edge museums like the Broad and the Museum of Contemporary Art, have reinvigorated the area, while some of the city’s best restaurants can be found here. Nearby is the Arts District, home to galleries that will satisfy your artistic yearnings if the museums downtown aren’t enough.

Hollywood

The stars of the big screen may be a rare spotting in Hollywood, but Hollywood Boulevard is checkered with their handprints, names, and signatures—a testament to the pivotal role the movie industry plays in Los Angeles. You’ll want to drop by the Hollywood Walk of Fame and TCL Chinese Theatre to pay tribute to your favorite celebrities.

West Hollywood

Affectionately termed “WeHo”, this fashionable neighborhood offers up smart shopping and dining options. LGBTQI nightlife finds its center here, where a couple dozen gay bars and clubs are clustered along Santa Monica Boulevard. Check out the Sunset Strip for its colorful billboards, design-savvy hotels, and much-lauded restaurants.

Silver Lake

Think tattoos instead of suntans, slow food instead of Michelin stars: along with neighboring Echo Park, Silver Lake forms the hipster heart of L.A. This is where you go to find budding artists and bohemians of every stripe and color. As in creative enclaves around the world, the LGBTQI community has a strong presence here, so let your rainbow-colored independent streak run wild.

Venice

There are beaches for serious sun and surf, and then there are beaches for seeing and being seen. Venice falls firmly in the latter camp. Skaters and rollerbladers, super-built bodybuilders, and man-bun-sporting cool kids all find a home here; venture along the famous boardwalk, and you’ll see them all. For an atmosphere that’s less street and more posh, head north to neighboring Santa Monica with its famous pier and chic dining and retail outlets.