Though many might envision fake breasts and spray tans galore, UCLA's immediate environment is a quaint, funky, and down-to-earth little town. Westwood is a teensy bit of sanity in the midst of wild LA, and all you need to enjoy it is your student ID and a pair of walking shoes. Younger students like to hang out here because of the trendy boutiques, varied cafés, and three movie theaters. Movie stars are often spotted shooting scenes in Westwood's narrow streets or picking up dinner at Whole Foods market, ensuring that LA's buzzing vibe is constantly felt.
With a car, everything changes. Loyola Marymount, Cal State Los Angeles, and the University of Southern California (UCLA’s sworn rival) are all within a 20-minute radius. However, although they're close by, students from each university don't usually mingle because of LA's roaring traffic and sections that tend to feel like universe-sized pockets. As for the UCLA galaxy, there are quite a few sights worth checking out that are only a short (cheap) bus or car trip away. LA's clubs are famous in the celebrity world, and there's guaranteed to be an establishment for everyone's interests in town. Legendary theme parks, breathtaking beaches, and historic sites abound, from funky bikes on Venice beach to classy brunches at the Beverly Hilton. The city's jam-packed scale of activities can leave some students feeling overwhelmed, but with a car and some street smarts, Bruins can certainly conquer LA.