Initially settled by the Chumash and Tongva tribes, the city of Los Angeles was first a part of the Spanish Empire, the First Mexican Empire, and the United Mexican states before becoming a part of the United States. The city got its name from a group of 44 settlers, Los Pobladores, who called the area 'El Pueblo de Nuestra Señora la Reina de los ngeles' or, The Town of Our lady the Queen of the Angels.
Today, though, the city is known for being home to America's wealthiest people and most famous stars. The second-largest city and the second-largest metropolitan area in the United States after New York City, more than 13 million Los Angelites live in the area.
More than just the infamous home of glitz, glamour, and fame, the city boasts over 75 miles of sandy seaside beaches and hundreds of easily recognizable landmarks and sights.
Luggage Storage near Train Stations in Los Angeles
The Los Angeles Metro Rail Station Network comprises more than 90 different railroad stations serving passengers all over the Greater Los Angeles Area. Rather than cover them all, for the sake of brevity, let's go over two of the busiest: Union Station and Chinatown Station.
Los Angeles's primary railway station, Los Angeles Union Station, or simply Union Station, first opened to the public in May 1939. As the largest station in the Western United States, Union Station sees just short of 2 million passengers every year.
The train station is made up of six island platforms that are shared by 12 Amtrak and Metrolink service tracks. The twelfth busiest station in all of North America and, by far, the busiest train station in America's west, Union Station offers regional routes throughout L.A., the state of California, and several long-distance routes to cities of New Orleans, Chicago, San Antonio, and New Orleans.
In addition to providing train and railway services, Union Station also serves as a hub for bus and coach services in and out of the city.
Located north of Downtown L.A., the Chinatown Station is located at the intersection of College Street and North Spring Street. Less than a mile away from Dodger Stadium and a short walk from the bustling North Broadway Street, Chinatown Station sits in the heart of the city's Chinatown neighborhood.
Just a short walk away from a mecca of Chinese American culture and cuisines, Chinatown Station is a relatively new addition to Los Angeles's railway network, having only been built 18 years ago. Currently, the station is undergoing massive reconstruction to update and modernize its facilities and better serve passengers.
History buffs will also note that the Chinatown Station provides almost direct access to the Chinese American Museum and multiple landmarks like the twin dragon gateway on Broadway and the gigantic Bruce Lee Statue in Central Plaza. Seven Los Angeles Metro Rail lines serve Chinatown Station. Also, it serves as a regional connector to Grand Av Arts / Bunker Hill, Historic Broadway, and the Little Tokyo / Arts District.
Luggage Storage at Airports in Los Angeles
If you're visiting the city by air travel, then the chances are that you'll be flying into LAX or John Wayne Airport, the two primary airports in Los Angeles.
Officially named Los Angeles International Airport, LAX may very well be the most well-known airport in the western hemisphere. The Los Angeles International Airport is located only 18 miles (30 kilometers) from Downtown Los Angeles and is surrounded by the Westchester, El Segundo, and Inglewood areas.
LAX is made up of four parallel runways space out over 3,500 acres of land and, it's a good thing, considering it sees more than 88 million passengers each year. The biggest and busiest airport on America's West Coast, LAX is a major gateway for both domestic and international travelers.
A truly massive airport, LAX has a total of nine passenger terminals and 146 gates for international and domestic travel. If you're flying in through LAX, be sure to check out the Theme Building, where visitors can look out onto the city from the observation deck.
John Wayne Airport
Serving the Greater Los Angeles area and Orange County, California, John Wayne Airport was renamed from its original name, Orange County Airport, after the actors' death in 1979. The airport provides both commercial and general aviation services and transports an average of 3.7 million travelers annually.
Currently, the airport has two runways, with its main runway having the distinction of being one of the shortest at any major airport in the U.S. John Wayne Airport consists of 22 passenger gates and three main terminals, Terminal A, Terminal B, and Terminal C.
The John Wayne Airport offers a variety of commuter, domestic, and international flights and is the second busiest airport in the Greater Los Angeles area. All three terminals at the airport offer complimentary wi-fi, as well as access to the airports' many restaurants, shops, and facilities.
What to do in Los Angeles
Considered the global capital of entertainment, Los Angeles is home to more than 100 museums, five major amusements parks, four water parks, over 1,000 hotels, and more than 29,500 restaurants and 1,600 bars. With virtually something to see or experience around every corner, here are the top three must-see attractions in L.A.
Famous for its immersive theming, nostalgic rides, and one-of-a-kind experiences, there's truly nowhere else in the world quite like Disneyland Park. The only park designed, constructed, and opened by the legendary Walt Disney himself, "the happiest place on Earth" invites guests to venture into a whole new world.
The park itself is separated into nine engaging lands, each seamlessly blending into the next. Upon entering the park, guests immediately find themselves in the middle of the classically Americana-styled Main Street, U.S.A., a bustling hub with a perfect view of the iconic Sleeping Beauty Castle and the Partners
statue. From there, traverse through Tomorrowland, Fantasyland, Frontierland, Adventureland, Critter Country, New Orleans Square, Mickey's Toontown, or take a walk on the dark side at Star Wars: Galaxy's Edge.
Throughout the day, you can meet all of your favorite Disney characters, from Mickey, the mouse that started it all, to Captain America, the leader of the Avengers superheroes. And, don't forget to stop in for a deliciously sweet Pineapple Dole Whip or a refreshingly cool Mint Julip before you leave!
Los Angeles County Museum of Art
Founded in 1961, the Los Angeles Country Museum of Art, or LACMA as it's often called, is the largest museum of art in the Western United States. With over 147,000 pieces and works telling the history of art from ancient times to modernity, the LACMA welcomes more than a million visitors through its halls each year.
Perhaps most visibly recognized for the large-scale Urban Light sculpture by Christ Burden that sits on its doorstep, the LACMA and its many exhibits have starred in a variety of films, television series, commercials, and photographs. The museum's other large-scale installations, you may also recognize from various works, include Tony Smith's Smoke, Michael Heizer's Levitated Mass, and a palm garden installed by Robert Irwin.
The LACMA is categorized by time period, region, and media form and has nine permanent collections that are regularly updated through circulation. If you plan on visiting the LACMA, be sure to check out their Picasso & Rivera Exhibition, where you can get a sneak peek at the creative process behind one of the world's most famous painters to have ever lived.
Los Angeles's Weather
Thanks to its comfortable Mediterranean climate, the sun shines on L.A. nearly every day. Balmy, warm days are typical, with low humidity and low rainfall, regardless of the season. Even the winter days are temperate to warm, with average high temperatures reaching as high as 68 F (20 C), and rarely dipping below 48 F (9 C).
The nearby San Bernadino Mountains and San Gabriel Mountains regularly experience heavy snowfall during the winter seasons. However, the Greater Los Angeles area sees snow so rarely that the most significant snowfall on record was a mere 2 inches (5 cm), more than 80 years ago in January of 1932.
Fun Facts About Los Angeles
- The city is also known as Tinseltown, La-La Land, the City of Angels, and, of course, Hollywood.
- In January of 1847, Los Angeles was officially incorporated into the United States.
- Before the iconic Hollywood sign was shortened, it first read "Hollywoodland."
- The economy in Los Angeles is so lucrative that it rivals that of entire countries, including Sweden, Switzerland, and Saudi Arabia.