10 Neighborhoods Celebrating Different Cultures In Los Angeles

Little Tokyo lanterns
Little Tokyo lanterns | © Mark Fischer/Flickr
Paloma Rubio

The sprawling city of Los Angeles, with county lines stretching even farther, is home to one of the most diverse populations in the country. Just by driving across the city, it is easy to see the many cultures that have left their mark and continue to shape it today. Here are 10 of the ethnic enclaves that make up the patchwork quilt of Los Angeles.

1. Olvera Street


© Peter C/Flickr
Olvera Street was built in the 1900s as a romanticized tribute to the Mexican heritage of Los Angeles. Though it remains a quaint nod to the Mexico of yesterday, you can find authentic Mexican souvenirs and food in any one of the little shops lining the street. Grab a churro at Mr. Churro and explore Avila Adobe, the oldest residence in Los Angeles. During holidays like Day of the Dead and Mexican Independence Day, the main plaza fills with vendors, artists, performers, and tourists.

2. Leimert Park


Leimert Park, Los Angeles
© Umberto Brayj/Flickr
When Leimert Park was built in the 1920s, it was meant to be a middle-class planned community, with schools, shopping, and housing within walking distance. Over the years, different groups have moved in and out of the neighborhood, such as Japanese Americans after the Second World War, and since the 1950s, African Americans have predominantly called Leimert Park home. Today, Leimert Park is experiencing a revival of sorts, with renovations being made to its public spaces, as it is recognized as a center for African American art and culture. On weekends, Leimert Park Plaza fills with crowds to watch live performers.

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