Jessica Poitevien

Sprawling over 500 square miles, Los Angeles is the largest city in California, comprising 200-plus neighborhoods—or 400-plus, depending on whom you ask. It’s this difficult-to-define aspect that makes exploring L.A. so rewarding. Beyond the glitz and grime of Hollywood, L.A. invites nature lovers to its beaches and mountains, serves as a beacon to artists of all kinds, poses for likable Instagram shots and celebrates diversity through its vibrant immigrant communities. People often portray L.A. as a city for the vain and greedily ambitious, but that would be yet another not-quite true characterization. The fact is, no matter where you go in La La Land, you can expect to be pleasantly surprised.