Palm trees against sunset in California

11 Things to Know About Living in Culver City

Culver City, CA is close to everything hot! Santa Monica, Los Angeles, Sony Pictures Studios, the Pacific Ocean—you name it! Part of the west side of Los Angeles known as “Silicon Beach,” which is home to nearly 500 tech startups, Culver City has become a cultural hub, combining the best elements of art, film, tech, and food. What else makes living in Culver City so great? Check out our list of things to know!

The Views Are Spectacular

Baldwin Hills Scenic Overlook in Culver City, Los Angeles
Photo by Eric Chan

Get your hiking shoes ready and head to Baldwin Hills Scenic Overlook, a 500-foot peak in a 58-acre park that gives wide sweeping views of Downtown Culver City and the Los Angeles metro. Take a stroll, test your strength on some stairs, or just enjoy the views of the ocean, mountains, and that fresh California air!

Ride the Rails All Over Los Angeles

Los Angeles metro running through Culver City
Photo by Neon Tommy

Once rather cut off by two major freeways, Culver City has now joined the public transit arena! The Metro Line Extension at Culver City was added in May 2016 with seven stations, and it’s a great way for residents to commute or visit other areas in Southern California from Los Angeles to Santa Monica.

Birthplace to Famous Stars

Practically every suburb and city in the Los Angeles metro can lay claim to a famous star who was born and raised in their area, and Culver City is no different! Drew Barrymore, Michael Richards, Helen Hunt, and Taran Killam are among the famous stars who hail from Culver City.

The Battle of Los Angeles

"The Battle of Los Angeles" LA Times, February 26, 1942
Los Angeles Times, February 26, 1942

Here’s a fun bit of history for Culver City residents! In the wee hours between February 24 and 25, 1942, something very large flew into the airspace over Los Angeles and Culver City. In response, 1,400 American anti-aircraft missiles being launched at what was believed to be a Japanese enemy fighter jet. When the air cleared, nothing was found. Eyewitnesses say a UFO was to blame for the firefight. The Battle of Los Angeles remains an unsolved mystery to this day.

A Touch of Hollywood Movie Glamour

The Culver Studios in Culver City, Los Angeles
Photo by Jim McDougall

When Culver City was founded in 1917, founder Harry Culver ran his city campaign with the tag “All Roads Lead to Culver City.” Around the same time, Thomas Ince was building his reputation as a film producer and director throughout California. Culver persuaded Ince to move to Culver City to create a city steeped in movie magic. From The Culver Studios in 1919 to Sony Pictures today, the city has left its mark in the filmmaking industry.

Somewhere Over the Rainbow

Rainbow Installation at Sony Pictures Studios
Photo by Blake Handley

Sony Pictures Studios (formerly MGM Studios) is based in Culver City and has produced some of the most famous films in American history, including Ben Hur, The Wizard of Oz, and Singin’ in The Rain. Stop by during one of the two-hour tours the company hosts throughout the week. These tours are open to the public, and you can see everything from classic film memorabilia to the rainbow installation!

Art Lovers Will Love Culver City

Mural in Culver City, Los Angeles
Photo by Ryan Vaarsi

Artists of all genres are making Culver City a truly vibrant place to live and work. The Culver City Arts District includes 35 art galleries and more than 43 boutiques, shops, and cafes that act as a gallery spaces. Each year, the district hosts an Art Walk that showcases the work of artists throughout the city with live music and events. You can also find tons of murals and street art around the city!

Soak Up the Sun with Free Outdoor Activities

Vegetables at Culver City Farmers Market
Photo by Spot Us

Stop by the popular Culver City Farmers Market for delicious produce, beautiful flowers, and homemade treats. Enjoy an afternoon at one of the city’s 11 parks, where you can sit down for a picnic, play a pick-up game of basketball, or swing with the kids on the playground. If you’re a hiker or runner, definitely check out The Culver City Stairs. LA Weekly named this one of the best spots for athletes looking for a challenge! There’s also Kenneth Haun State Recreation Center, an expansive park with fishing, hiking, and more.

Discover One-of-a-Kind Institutions

The Museum of Jurassic Technology in Culver City, Los Angeles
Photo by John Nakamura Remy

The Museum of Jurassic Technology and The Museum of Tolerance are two remarkable institutions you can only find in Culver City. The Museum of Jurassic Technology features artifacts that can only be described as a “cabinet of curiosities,” while The Museum of Tolerance is all about examining the roles of racism and prejudice in major historical events like the Holocaust. For something a little lighter, take in a show at the Kirk Douglas Theatre, which originally opened as the Culver Theatre in 1946. Or visit the Wende Museum and view artwork, films, and personal stories from the Cold War.

A Haven for Foodies

Salad at Hatchet Hall in Culver City, Los Angeles
Photo by T.Tseng

You don’t have to go all the way to Downtown Los Angeles to find great food! From casual bakeries to high-end dining, this city has something for everyone. Check out Copenhagen Pastry, the first authentic Danish pastry shop in Culver City. They offer everything from kringle cakes to raspberry macaroons, and they even have delivery options for residents and businesses within five to ten miles! Want tacos? Head to Loqui, where you’ll find fresh, handmade Mexican cuisine in a casual environment. Try the Chicken Molcajete! For an upscale dining experience, Hatchet Hall is a must-visit. The rotating menu focuses on seasonal, local ingredients and includes items like Beef Fat Potatoes, Roasted Game Hen, and Striped Seabass.

Your Choice of Caffeine

Latte at Cognoscenti Coffee
Photo by T.Tseng

Attention coffee lovers! Culver City might just be the perfect place for you. The famous Blue Bottle Coffee has a cafe location here, as does the more modern Cognoscenti Coffee. If you like locally-roasted coffee, hit up Bar Nine, where you can sit down and enjoy a coffee or purchase whole beans and roast at home! Be sure to stop by The Conservatory for Coffee, Tea, and Cocoa as well! This coffeehouse is a Culver City institution that specializes in organic coffee and tea that you can grab in-store or online.

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What’s your favorite thing about Culver City? Tell us in the comments!

Are you moving to Culver City soon? Extra Space Storage has several storage facilities in Los Angeles that can help with your transition!

All images have either been provided by a listed organization or are licensed under the Creative Commons.

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