One of the weirdest things you can do in LA is to walk. May it be with a goal or just strolling around. No one walks in LA, “Let’s just walk there” doesn’t exist in the local vocabulary. This city is so unimaginably vast, every point of interest is at least a mile apart (except those overrated strips on Sunset or Rodeo Dr, the fame of the latter is build on a mere half mile part of the street occupied by brand stores you’ll find in any other major city, the rest of the street is private homes).
The only people you see on the street, are either joggers or mentally challenged people. And this is what you’re considered to be in case you’re walking. Of course we did walk to places all the time, since we thought this to be the way a city is actually to be experienced. And you can walk to places in LA, it might take some time, but it’s doable. Our best buy in terms of guides is the 50 Walks in LA guide we found in a small Silver Lake store. Many distances are manageable if you don’t mind walking for about 40mins. But the thing is, you’re going to be the only one walking there, most of the times we were literally the only people on the sidewalk, no matter what day or time. Which gives it a kind of uncanny feeling as soon as someone is walking behind you – you’ll instantly suspect him or her following you. One time a guy actually said sorry for walking behind us, because it made him feel like he stalked us.
In Beverly Hills, where I am currently staying, people will give you actually weird looks for walking in the street. Today I felt so weird walking the private homes part of Rodeo Drive, I wouldn’t have been surprised if a police car stopped next to me to inquire my suspicious intents. But the weird feeling is not the only problem. The main downside to walking somewhere in LA is, that it is most likely you won’t see anything of interest on the way to your goal. Many times it feels like walking besides a freeway, a gated community or through an abandoned industrial zone. There is just nothing there, only never ending blocks of private homes, inaccessible office/industrial/whatever buildings and the occasional gas station. I’ll keep on walking, though.