First time Los Angeles: discover the best of the City of Angels

People think they know Los Angeles, even, sometimes especially, if they’ve never been: a land of starstruck dreamers, Tinseltown magic, traffic-numbed freeways, silicone-inflated bimbos and jacked-up himbos.

But dig deeper and your first trip will be a lot more surprising – and rewarding. America’s second-largest city offers a mini-UN of cultures and a natural backdrop just as diverse: from beaches for swimming, sunning and surfing, to mountains for hiking, skiing and city- or star-gazing. Once downtrodden neighborhoods are being regenerated with new museums, concert halls and eateries to entertain and feed the visitor. And the expanding transit system is making it all easier to reach than ever before.