City Introduction

It is hard to know what to expect from a new city as travel guides tend to highlight typical tourist attractions and the media often plays up stereotypes. Check out these city descriptions to get a better idea about what some of America’s most famous cities are actually like.

City Overview Education # of Students Cost Climate
Los Angeles, CA As the film and entertainment capital of the world, this city is where the magic happens. The population is extremely diverse and there is enough variety in activities (everything from surfing to trendy clubs) to please everyone. California Polytechnic State University, Pomona | Claremont McKenna College | Loyola Marymount University | Santa Monica College | University of California, Los Angeles | Unversity of Southern California 119,000 High* Mediterranean climate average, with mild, somewhat wet winters, and warm summers. Prevalent warm southerly airflow gives the city a warm breeze.
* We have determined whether a city is low, medium, or high cost based on comparisons to other cities in the U.S. The cost of living depends upon several cost factors such as housing or apartment rental, auto insurance, health insurance, state taxes, food, utilities, etc. Please visit the Best Places website to compare cities where you are interested in applying to schools.
Los Angeles, CA

Los Angeles (L.A.) is the film and entertainment capital of the world. It is the place where movies are made, television shows are recorded, and stars reside. At times it may feel like everyone in Hollywood is an aspiring actor/model. The city is the embodiment of glamour, success, and money. But there is more to L.A. than the Hollywood scene.

The University Of Southern California is located in the heart of downtown L.A. The sky rise buildings and congested traffic signify the presence of big business. The cultural diversity in this area is unbeatable. You could get lost in the flower mart one minute and find yourself driving through Little Ethiopia the next. Moving out west, the University of California Los Angeles is nestled in the bustling town of Westwood. Westwood feels like a college town, as it is filled with restaurants, bars, shops, and student apartments all within walking distance of each other.

LA reaches all the way out to the coast line. Smaller private universities such as Pepperdine and Loyola Marymount University are located right next to the beautiful beaches. The Malibu beaches, near Pepperdine, are gorgeous and tend to be more private. Santa Monica, by LMU, is home to many trendy bars, shops, restaurants, and the Santa Monica Pier and tends to attract most of the tourists. Slightly further south is Venice beach, home to LA’s hippy/liberal folk. This beach town has a popular boardwalk with some of the best people watching in all of Los Angeles. You can rollerblade, cruise on the bike path, shop for cheap items from street vendors, and eat at cafes.

Stretching farther south is California State Long Beach. Long Beach is L.A.’s neighboring city just 15 minutes south. Long Beach state is a great alternative to school in LA for individuals who want to be in southern California but not in the center of a L.A. It is right next to the beach, and surrounded by a lot of great restaurants and bars.

One of the greatest aspects of L.A. is its diversity of activities. The art, film, and music scene is some of the countries best. To get an idea of what’s going on right now check out If you love the great outdoors you are in luck as L.A. is in the center of both the mountains and beach. There are some great local snowboarding spots within an hour of the city. The San Gabriel Mountains and Malibu are loaded with hiking trails, and the beaches have great waves for surfing and body boarding. L.A. is known for its nightlife, as it is extremely diverse. There are bars around the universities that are great for meeting students but the glamorous club scene is in Hollywood.

One downside to L.A. is the transportation situation. Traffic is horrendous. It takes at least 30 minutes to drive almost anywhere during rush hour. Furthermore, public transportation is practically non existent. Taxis are expensive and you can’t stand on the side of the road expecting to wave one down. They have to be called in advance and you can expect to wait at least 15 minutes. The buses are slow, smelly, and inconvenient. The train won’t take you where you want to go, but L.A. does have a huge international airport.

This city is unlike any other city in the country. The sun is always shining, everyone is always smiling, and there is a frozen yogurt shop on every corner. If you want a trendy, youthful city come to L.A.

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