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Old 09-06-2014, 03:42 PM
 
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Is East Los Angeles dangerous? Someone advised me not to go there but I really do want to go there as it is an approximately 90% Mexican neighborhood according to the Census. I want to see Mexican and Chicano culture and I figured this is probably the best place to see it. I've been to Little Havana in Miami and I was wondering if these two neighborhoods are more or less similar. I heard about the gang problem. Is it okay for me to go to East LA as long as I'm not wearing gang colors? I'm sorry if I offend anyone.
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Old 09-06-2014, 04:48 PM
 
Location: Los Angeles (Native)
25,304 posts, read 17,390,675 times
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I'm thinking if you keep to yourself you will be left alone .

Not sure if it would be as vibrant as little Havana and doesn't get the same number of tourists and stuff as little Havana might .

You might also want to checkout Boyle Heights which is near to East LA as well .

There are lots of communities in LA that are Hispanic majority . Many in the valley too , but not sure if there would be must to appeal to you in those areas .

There's pacoima , San Fernando , etc

Are you living in LA now ? Are you a visitor ?
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Old 09-06-2014, 05:11 PM
 
Location: OC/LA
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Just go to Olvera street.
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Old 09-06-2014, 05:43 PM
 
Location: West Hollywood
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"East Los Angeles" is pretty vague. That's a large area with many neighborhoods.
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Old 09-06-2014, 06:10 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by homenj View Post
Is East Los Angeles dangerous? Someone advised me not to go there but I really do want to go there as it is an approximately 90% Mexican neighborhood according to the Census. I want to see Mexican and Chicano culture and I figured this is probably the best place to see it. I've been to Little Havana in Miami and I was wondering if these two neighborhoods are more or less similar. I heard about the gang problem. Is it okay for me to go to East LA as long as I'm not wearing gang colors? I'm sorry if I offend anyone.
Not really. Though, there are parts of it that are. And most Mexicans in East LA are Americanized. You're not going to notice a whole lot of difference between them and you. But there is culture to be found.

Go to Eastide Luv, a bar in Boyle Heights
EASTSIDELUV *** Wine Bar y Queso ***

Get a Green Chile Bean and Cheese Burrito at Al and Bea's
The Great Taco Hunt: Top 10 Bean and Cheese Burritos

Or some tacos at Guisados
Guisados - Boyle Heights - Los Angeles, CA | Yelp

Check for events at the Mariachi Plaza
Mariachi Plaza Los Angeles | Dedicated to the Mariachis of Mariachi Plaza and the Boyle Hotel
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Old 09-07-2014, 10:17 AM
 
Location: Los Angeles, CA
555 posts, read 677,642 times
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East LA is safe during the day. Some areas may be less so at night, so since you're unfamiliar with the place, I would stick to visiting during the day and travel main thoroughfares if you're just walking about. But East LA is rather suburban in nature and layout, so it may not be what you're looking for; it may be too quiet and spread out.

Boyle Heights's main drag may offer the density and street scene you're looking for.

You could go to Olvera Street, but keep in mind it was actually created as a tourist destination (by Christine Sterling, a white woman -- some of her intentions were good). It's not even a neighborhood; it's largely a collection of tourist-oriented shops and restaurants. Having said that, the local Mexican-American population has in many ways adopted it as their own, so that layered history certainly gives the place a nuanced take on the presentation of ethnicity and culture.

Olvera Street: The Fabrication of L.A.'s Mexican Heritage | What's in a Street Name | Departures Columns | KCET

Mexicans and Chicanos are all over the place in LA and you can find little pockets of distinct culture here and there, but just like many parts of LA, it's not really dense and centralized relative to cultural districts in other cities. Still, gems can be found if you look hard enough.

Good luck, and enjoy your trip!
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Old 09-07-2014, 11:42 AM
 
Location: Seattle, WA
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Why worry about safety when East LA is a treasure trove of some of the best Mexican food in the US?
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Old 09-07-2014, 02:19 PM
 
Location: Riverside
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Aldous9 View Post
most Mexicans in East LA are Americanized
Yeeeahhh... But THOSE are the ones you have to watch out for.
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Old 09-07-2014, 05:56 PM
 
1,882 posts, read 3,014,668 times
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Wow. As someone who has trumpeted about East LA for years, and having lived here years myself, I am pretty shocked by the replies on here. Really? It ain't 1993. Jeez.

EAST LA IS PERFECTLY FREAKING SAFE. Its fine. Its filled with families and its mostly Latino, with alot of Asians as well, some blacks, and a few whiteys like me.

I have NEVER had a problem on this side of town. Venice is WAY WAY WAY more dangerous and its the 2nd biggest tourist attraction in SoCal. But you don't hear nothing about that, eh?

Yeah, its got a bad history, but that stuff died down years ago. Most of the gangbangers got shipped out to San Berdoo or Riverside since there is that clause where you can't associate with former felons. So they left town. I see more hispanic kids wearing Misfits and Doors tshirts than I see drapes and gang signs. This is a different place now.

Seriously, I wonder, how many of you actually come to this side of town? Are you really this ignorant on your own or did you have help from your Valley friends? Seriously. Egregious.

The parks are great, you can have a real life here. Tacos galore. I love my freaking neighbors. They know how to party but they work hard too. Great murals, great car culture, street vendors. Tamales for a buck 25 from a little ol granny. I buy honey from a man who has his own bees. I walk through my hood at night and people walking their dogs SMILE at you. Seriously. So chill. Great supermarkets, nice freaking people, NO TUDE. I have lived on this side of town since 2008. And I have fallen in love with it and I will defend it from ignoramuses who watched too many "Gangland" episodes. EAST LA. I would buy a house here if I had the money. Check it out westsiders. Don't believe the hype.
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Old 09-07-2014, 06:43 PM
 
Location: Los Angeles, CA
555 posts, read 677,642 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nighthouse66 View Post
Wow. As someone who has trumpeted about East LA for years, and having lived here years myself, I am pretty shocked by the replies on here. Really? It ain't 1993. Jeez.

EAST LA IS PERFECTLY FREAKING SAFE. Its fine. Its filled with families and its mostly Latino, with alot of Asians as well, some blacks, and a few whiteys like me.

I have NEVER had a problem on this side of town. Venice is WAY WAY WAY more dangerous and its the 2nd biggest tourist attraction in SoCal. But you don't hear nothing about that, eh?

Yeah, its got a bad history, but that stuff died down years ago. Most of the gangbangers got shipped out to San Berdoo or Riverside since there is that clause where you can't associate with former felons. So they left town. I see more hispanic kids wearing Misfits and Doors tshirts than I see drapes and gang signs. This is a different place now.

Seriously, I wonder, how many of you actually come to this side of town? Are you really this ignorant on your own or did you have help from your Valley friends? Seriously. Egregious.

The parks are great, you can have a real life here. Tacos galore. I love my freaking neighbors. They know how to party but they work hard too. Great murals, great car culture, street vendors. Tamales for a buck 25 from a little ol granny. I buy honey from a man who has his own bees. I walk through my hood at night and people walking their dogs SMILE at you. Seriously. So chill. Great supermarkets, nice freaking people, NO TUDE. I have lived on this side of town since 2008. And I have fallen in love with it and I will defend it from ignoramuses who watched too many "Gangland" episodes. EAST LA. I would buy a house here if I had the money. Check it out westsiders. Don't believe the hype.
It's not super dangerous, no. But I wouldn't say it's "perfectly freaking safe." Stuff still happens.

The area has always been filled with families even back when it was more dangerous. And yes, it has a long history of ethnic diversity. These things are nothing new and have no bearing on whether or not an area is safe.

And yes, I go to that side of town. I live there. I'm glad you like it.

FWIW, Venice's reputation for having some pretty sketchy areas is well-known.
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