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17 Best Neighborhoods in Los Angeles, CA

By: Susan Finch
March 17, 2021

Los Angeles is a sprawling metropolis with unique neighborhoods ranging from upscale to funky and laid-back. With each neighborhood offering something different, everyone can find what they're looking for. Here's a breakdown of the best neighborhoods in Los Angeles.

1. Downtown LA

Apartments abound in Downtown Los Angeles with proximity to some of the world's best restaurants, nightclubs, shopping, and more. The neighborhood has seen its evolution from a ghost town of abandoned business buildings and homes to a creative community with refurbished warehouses.

Today, Downtown LA is a beacon for modern urban dwellers looking for upscale amenities. Look for apartment buildings with pools, on-site gyms, city views, and parking to enjoy the best in downtown living.

2. Hollywood

Situated in Central LA, Hollywood lies near the trendy West Hollywood neighborhood and Hollywood Hills with luxurious homes. Locals mix with the tourists in Hollywood at neighborhood staples like the Chinese Theatre, Dolby Theatre, and Madame Tussauds.

3. North Hollywood

North Hollywood is also an option for life-work-play balance. The San Fernando Valley area of "NoHo" offers quirky restaurants, a creative spirit, and a diverse mix of locals. It's also just a quick trip to Downtown Los Angeles. It’s a beacon for up-and-coming actors and musicians.

4. Wilshire Center - Koreatown

Centrally located to Downtown, the Koreatown - Wilshire area features a melting pot of residents in a bustling neighborhood.

Step out to dinner 24-hours a day, hit the clubs, sip on cocktails, or visit a dive bar. Although Koreatown is a trendy place to live, it’s still home to some of the most authentic Korean eats in the country.

5. Woodland Hills - Warner Center

New developments in the Woodland Hills - Warner Center area attract millennials moving to Los Angeles. Bordering the Santa Monica Mountains, Woodland Hills offers upscale living surrounded by lush, green space.

Locals lace up their hiking boots or grab their mountain bikes on weekends. After some time spent outdoors, you'll find residents of this neighborhood gathering at coffee shops, bars, and restaurants to enjoy outdoor dining in the always-beautiful weather.

6. Marina Del Rey

Marina del Rey is the place for you if you love living near the beach or want to spend the weekends on the water. This neighborhood offers a relaxed atmosphere with convenient proximity to Los Angeles hotspots like Downtown and Santa Monica.

This seaside community has a relaxed and family-friendly vibe and is a sought-after Los Angeles neighborhood. There's a large sailing community in Marina Del Rey, and watersports like paddleboarding are a local favorite.

7. Beverly Hills

Living in the exclusive neighborhood of Beverly Hills offers a tight-knit community with gorgeous tree-lined streets and greenspace like Beverly Gardens Park. The area is divided among quiet residential homes from tranquil to glitzy. Of course, this is one of the most expensive neighborhoods in Los Angeles.

There's also the Golden Triangle with downtown shopping on Rodeo Drive, a laid-back farmer's market, and nearby museums like LACMA and the Getty Center.

8. Culver City

Teeming with Hollywood film history, the nearby Culver City area is home to gastropubs, cocktail bars, and trendy hotspots. You’ll also find the beautiful Kenneth Hahn State Recreation Area with plenty of hiking trails to explore. Culver City is a cozy, hip, and laid-back place to live with convenience to Downtown Los Angeles.

Situated just east of Santa Monica, Culver City also features an outdoor mall for upscale or casual shopping and the Helms Bakery complex for photography, fashion, books, and more.

9. Echo Park

Echo Park earned a reputation as a vibrant and funky neighborhood with a lively nightlife scene. Bordering Downtown Los Angeles, Chinatown, and Silver Lake, Echo Park features indie music venues, food trucks, and trendy bars beckoning tourists and locals alike.

Echo Park also features green space and outdoor recreation at spots like Echo Park Lake and Elysian Park. Right around the corner, you'll find Dodger Stadium, where you can soak up the sun and enjoy a Dodgers game.

10. Burbank

Burbank comes at a slightly cheaper price point than the proper boundaries of Los Angeles. With a more residential feel, you'll find more space, shopping malls, and entertainment centers.

Movie studios and the entertainment workforce also call this historic neighborhood home. If you need green space, spend the weekend at Griffith Park with over 4,000 acres of land.

11. Los Feliz

You would never know Los Feliz was the birthplace of Mickey Mouse. However, the neighborhood has a rich history in the entertainment industry.

Today, the area attracts newcomers moving to Los Angeles to its tree-lined streets and a walkable business district. Enjoy restaurants, shops, and proximity to the southern slopes of Griffith Park for laid-back, outdoorsy living with modern charm.

12. Silverlake

Once known as a gritty LA neighborhood near Downtown, Silver Lake is touted for its creative spirit and modernist architecture with a close-knit feel. Residents enjoy hiking into the hills for panoramic views and checking out concerts at the Greek Theatre outdoor venue.

You'll also find plenty of excellent nearby restaurants and bars. Downtown LA is just a stone's throw away.

13. Chinatown

Historic Chinatown in Los Angeles is more affordable than other neighborhoods. It’s teeming with galleries, cultural events, and year-round festivals.

You'll find an impressive array of authentic eateries and dim sum. Dodgers fans are also just a stone's throw from Elysian Park. Unfortunately, you'll also find your share of traffic during home games.

14. Santa Monica & Venice

Two of the most coveted locations to set up shop when moving to Los Angeles are Santa Monica and Venice. These areas offer waterfront views and a more relaxed lifestyle without compromising on first-class amenities.

Dubbed "Silicon Beach," the tech scene has been booming in the area. However, the neighborhoods are still surfer-approved beach towns at heart. Needless to say, you'll spend plenty of time outdoors in these parts of town.

15. Sherman Oaks

Located in the heart of San Fernando Valley, Sherman Oaks features upscale apartment buildings and unique shopping options. Ventura Boulevard is the place to find all the retail therapy and dining options you need.

Don't be surprised if you see celebrities here. However, you'll need a healthy apartment-hunting budget to find the right place.

16. Palms

Palms is a stomping ground for UCLA students and staff. Despite being the oldest neighborhood in Los Angeles, its largely gone under the radar as one of the best areas to live in.

It was founded in 1886 and is a family-friendly option in the city. It blends libraries, green space, shopping, and restaurants. You're also never far from craft beer or artisanal wine when you live in the Palms.

17. Van Nuys

Van Nuys is one of the least expensive neighborhoods in Los Angeles. It once had a reputation as a rough neighborhood. However, affordable rents are steadily drawing a new crowd of locals hungry for a fun and eclectic community.

Savor the taste of the city with ethnic eateries and restaurants. Locals relax at the Japanese Garden or nearby Lake Balboa Park.

Final Thoughts

Are you ready to find the best neighborhood in Los Angeles for you? Sign up for Apartment List to find your dream apartment.

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Susan Finch is a freelance writer and content manager focusing on local experiences, travel, and anything relating to really good food and craft brews. Her work has appeared in travel guidebooks and national magazines and newspapers. Read More
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