Have you ever wondered what Los Angeles is really like? Today, a local is going to give us a glimpse into what it’s like to live in Los Angeles, as well as advice for visitors. Are you ready?
1. Could you tell us a bit about yourself and where you come from?
I’m Mona Corona. I was born and raised in Los Angeles, and have lived here my whole life! (28 years.) I am a luxury travel blogger, a digital strategy consultant, and a social media marketing professor at a fashion college.
2. What do you love most about LA?
Los Angeles is an amazing place to visit for many reasons. With year-round sunshine and perfect weather, amazing food, and tons to see and do, it is no wonder why I’ve never lived anywhere else. LA is probably the only place where you could go to the beach in the winter, and then drive 2 hours into the mountains to go skiing in the same day. Los Angeles is a busy and bustling city, but it is also surrounded by beautiful nature whenever you need a break from the chaotic city life.
3. Is there anything that frustrates or annoys you when tourists visit your hometown?
The only thing that annoys me when tourists travel to my city is how crowded public places become. The beaches are especially packed in the summertime when it is high-travel season, but I can’t blame people for wanting to visit. LA is a destination everyone should travel to at least once.
4. In your opinion, what places should visitors see when in Los Angeles?
The top 3 places all visitors should see when coming to LA are Malibu for pristine beaches, Griffith Observatory for amazing views and its hike to the Hollywood sign, and one of our world-class museums such as the Getty or LACMA for some culture.
5. What foods should visitors to LA eat?
Los Angeles is a melting pot of cultures as people immigrate here from all over in pursuit of the American Dream. With this comes a melting pot (quite literally) of different cuisines. From one-dollar street tacos to high-end sushi and Michelin-starred restaurants, there is something to eat in LA for every palate. Definitely try some authentically-made Mexican food while visiting LA. With a strong Hispanic influence, Mexican food here is as good as it gets.
6. What’s your favourite American word? Why? What does it mean?
LA has a lot of slang, but I would say the most common words would be “dude” and “chill.” LA has always had a long-standing surf culture, which may be a big contributor to why we use these words so much.
7. What advice would you give to somebody moving to Los Angeles?
LA is very spread out and the traffic can be horrible. It doesn’t help that our public transportation system is not the best. My suggestion for those moving to the city would be to learn when the busy traffic commute times are and which direction the traffic is headed, and then avoid driving on those routes during those times if possible.
8. If you could describe your hometown in just one sentence, what would you say?
If I could describe LA in one word it would be “diverse.” No matter where you live, what you do, or what your interests are, there is something in LA for everyone. Each neighborhood of LA can vary greatly: from the glamorous and trendy west-side areas of Beverly Hills and West Hollywood, to the more laid-back and hipster vibes of the east-side’s Echo Park and Silver Lake. There are areas that are suburban and quiet at all times, and then there is the nightlife and skyscrapers that light up the sky in a busy downtown manner. No matter what you are after, diversity is found everywhere from the people to the food, so things are always kept interesting in this amazingly unique city.
9. If tourists were to know one thing about the Los Angeles culture, what should that be?
The one thing all tourists should know is that Los Angeles and its people are not the stereotype we are made out to be. Many people see Angelenos as stuck up, materialistic, fake, or just down-right rude. While it is true that many people move to LA in pursuit of making it in the entertainment industry as actors, models, or filmmakers, and with that sometimes comes bad personalities with the wrong intentions, the majority of those who are native to LA are not the stereotypes you’d see in movies or on TV. Most Angelenos are very kind, open, and accepting. We are passionate about what we believe in, and many are very liberal. People here are free to be whomever and whatever they please. So visit us with openness and acceptance, and don’t let any prejudices about who or what we are get in the way.
10. Do you have any interesting traditions that you’d like to tell others about?
The holiday of Independence Day/4th of July is always a great time to be in LA. The day time is filled with backyard bar-b-ques, pool parties, and of course, picnics at the beach. At night, the sky lights up with hundreds of firework shows that can be seen all over the city. It is a fun time to be in Los Angeles especially for those visiting from out of the country; and with visiting in the middle of summer, you’ll be guaranteed plenty of sunshine and great weather, with lots to do and see.
Thanks Mona – we’ve loved getting to know you and Los Angeles better!
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