New York City, Los Angeles, Chicago, and Houston are the four most populated cities in America. Each one has its own unique vibe and attractions that lure millions of residents and tourists. But are they worth the hype? If you’re planning a trip to Southern California, you might want to skip out on exploring Los Angeles.
You may long for that iconic photo in front of the Hollywood sign, but there are some serious cons to visiting this city of 8 million people. Let’s dive in!
Where Is Los Angeles?
Located on the west coast of California, Los Angeles is the largest city in the Golden State. Almost 4 million residents live here, while 50 million people visited the city in 2018.
Los Angeles is about two hours and 20 minutes north of San Diego and two hours southeast of Santa Barbara. Several major interstates run through the city, including I-5, I-10, I-405, and I-110.
What Is Los Angeles Known For?
Los Angeles is the cinematic capital of the country. Paramount Pictures, Universal, and Warner Brothers all produce movies and television series here. As the home of Hollywood, Los Angeles is certainly a location for the rich and famous.
The city is also home to Disneyland, one of the biggest tourist attractions in the country. About 18 million tourists go to this theme park every year. It pales in comparison to the 58 million that go to Florida’s Disney World, but it’s still one of the most sought-after attractions in California.
Los Angeles is also one of the nicest beach cities in the United States. Tourists and residents flock to Venice Beach, Malibu, Long Beach, Huntington Beach, and Santa Monica every year. The renowned Santa Monica Pier has restaurants, shops, and the Pacific Park Amusement Park. Malibu is home to million-dollar homes of celebrities like Leonardo DiCaprio, Cher, and Bruce Willis.
How Do You Get to Los Angeles?
Los Angeles International Airport, known as LAX, is the primary airport and one of the world’s busiest. Amtrak’s Union Station is also in Los Angeles. So whether you’re traveling by plane or train, you have easy access to the second-largest city in the country.
If you’re traveling by car, Los Angeles is easily accessible via several interstates. You’ll have traffic to deal with, but the drive from several nearby cities is a straight shot. If you’re driving from Las Vegas, you’ll take I-15 for a little over four hours until you reach Los Angeles. From Phoenix, it’s about a six-hour drive straight west on I-10. From San Francisco, it’s another six-hour drive but south on I-5.
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5 Reasons to Avoid Los Angeles
Although millions visit Los Angeles, that doesn’t mean that you should join the crowd of other millions. There are five reasons to avoid Los Angeles.
1. There Are Too Many People
As already mentioned, Los Angeles is the second largest city in the United States. Not only do you have to contend with the residents, but millions of tourists are also in the city at any time.
Whether you want to catch a Lakers game or bask in the sun on Venice Beach, you’ll be shoulder-to-shoulder with huge crowds.
2. The Traffic Is Awful
Because of the millions of residents and tourists, the traffic in Los Angeles is terrible. Also, because the city covers so much area, you might have to drive 90 minutes just to go from one location to another.
The crowds and traffic can ruin a trip to Los Angeles because you spend so much time waiting in line or sitting in traffic.
3. Hollywood Is Overrated
Hollywood isn’t all it’s cracked up to be. Although you might have a chance of running into a celebrity, many filmmakers have moved to other, cheaper locations. The iconic Hollywood Sign and the Hollywood Walk of Fame lose their shine after a while. Don’t be surprised if these attractions don’t live up to the hype.
4. Everything Is Expensive
Los Angeles isn’t just one of the most expensive cities in America, but it’s one of the most expensive cities in the world. Whether you’re just trying to pick up some groceries or want a romantic evening out, you’ll spend an arm and a leg compared to other cities.
Residents might be used to paying $4 to $5 for a gallon of gas, but tourists feel the pinch at the pump.
5. Public Transportation Is Poor
With a place with vast, you’d think public transportation would be better. A city of its size should have a much better public transportation system in place.
The buses and trains don’t operate much faster than personal vehicles, and with the sprawling city’s size, it still takes an hour to reach certain attractions.
Is a Visit to Los Angeles Worth It?
The truth is, there are lots of other cities in America worth visiting more than Los Angeles. The beaches are beautiful, but so are the beaches in Florida. Seeing a Dodgers game might be on your bucket list, but Fenway Park is another excellent historic stadium.
You’ll have to decide if a trip to Los Angeles is worth it. But make sure to weigh the cons of crowds, traffic, and expenses when planning your trip.
Do you think Los Angeles is worth visiting?
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