Who hasn’t heard of LA? Whether you know it for the walk of fame or for the wider magic of Tinseltown, Los Angeles is a name that carries with it just as much fame as it does infamy in some circles. It’s also a city with an incredible history behind it – you certainly don’t get to this level of international fame without more than a few stories behind you!
LA is a city that’s full of surprises. While it’s well known for being the very epicentre of the US entertainment industry, it continues to be a hugely popular tourist destination for holidaymakers worldwide, too. Here are some fascinating facts about Los Angeles and its history which might just surprise you.
Part of LA’s growth and resounding success over the years is certainly thanks to the fact that oil was struck in the region, instantly making it bankable. From the years 1892 to 1923, the city grew to become a superpower in oil production, generating around 25% of total global oil consumption by the mid-1920s. To this day, derricks continue to roll barrels out across the years.
LA’s weather can really vary; however, it’s not always known for its rain. Tell that to citizens who were unlucky enough to stroll through the city on a fateful day back in February 1978. It was at this time where the city played host to a foot of rainfall in just one 24-hour period!
Los Angeles is extremely multicultural. Only around 26% of the population are white and non-Hispanic, with the majority of people here being of Latino or Hispanic origin.
LA’s economy is truly staggering. In fact, it’s on par with several European countries when it comes to sheer size. It’s already thought to be bigger than Sweden’s financial might, for example. You really do have the movies to thank for that!
There are all kinds of odd laws you’ll find in LA which you simply won’t find elsewhere. For example, if you’re caught licking a toad in Los Angeles, you’re going to face arrest. We’re not quite sure why, but it’s probably best not to query the LAPD on this. What’s more, if you’re caught sending more than two thousand sheep down the route along Hollywood Boulevard, you’re also going to fall foul of the law. Who’s counting them?
Los Angeles is not only the heart of the American film and TV industry, it’s also home to a huge array of theatres and entertainment venues. For example, you’ll find that there are more than 220 different theatres here, and even over 100 different museums. It’s also a huge epicentre of international art, too.
LA is an extremely young city – it’s thought that the average citizen here is just 35 years of age.
LA is, of course, well known for that iconic Hollywood sign. However, it once said Hollywoodland – it’s been truncated over the years.
The Dodger Stadium in LA is said to be almost unique in the way that it’s built. Most baseball stadiums in the US, as you might imagine, are built to stand above the ground. The Dodger ground, however, is actually built into a hole – it’s partially underground as a sunken standard!
As a result of the multicultural makeup of the city, the majority of people in Los Angeles speak more than English alone. Only around 40% of people in the city actually purely speak English, as it stands. It’s said to be home to people from more than 140 different territories, and more than 220 different tongues and languages are spoken here. Regardless of your mother tongue, there’s always a chance you’ll find someone you can communicate with in LA!
Los Angeles is also a curiosity in the sense that it’s a hotbed for tectonic activity. This means that, across the years, it has played host to a variety of earthquakes and tremors. This may be as a result of the built-up nature of the city, and its proximity to shifting plates across North America.
How many cities out there have more than three airports? Try five. LA has five separate airports to its name, with LAX being the most prominent. In fact, LAX is one of the five biggest and busiest airports on the planet full stop.
LA is home to a unique lighthouse, too. Yes – while many people will be distracted by Hollywood and the walk of fame, plenty will flock to LA’s unique beacon – it’s the only lighthouse in the world which has a green light.
Los Angeles has the incredible distinction of being a Summer Olympic Games host city twice in the space of 60 years. It first hosted the Games back in 1932, before hosting again in 1984.
LA plays host to myriad buildings and skyscrapers. One of the most interesting you’ll find here is the Bradburry Building. Why? It’s a commercial building that’s incredibly old! It’s stood in the city since 1893.
There are plenty of historic hotspots in LA, too. However, the city area has been of particular interest to archaeologists in recent years, mainly thanks to the unearthing of a tar pit in 2006. This new tar pit offered up incredible ancient remains – for example, researchers were able to find mammoths, sabre toothtigers and even a giant sloth or two – preserved enough for scientists to take a closer look!
Oddly enough, if you choose to visit the LA coroner’s office, there’s a gift shop at the end. That’s the glitz and glamour of LA for you – always about the tourism!
LA really is the birthplace of cinema – it was back in 1902 when the world’s first-ever movie theatre opened in the city. Of course, that was just the start of things to come – as movies started picking up popularity, LA would quickly become the cinema capital of the globe.
In fact, Los Angeles has been settled in for longer than you might imagine – Europeans first laid down roots here back in 1769.
Do you have any interesting or fun facts about Los Angeles that we’ve missed? Share them here in the comments section below!