Worldwide icon-chevron-right North America icon-chevron-right United States icon-chevron-right California icon-chevron-right Los Angeles icon-chevron-right The five worst-kept secrets in L.A.

The five worst-kept secrets in L.A.

Angelenos have name-checked these spots so much that they’re anything but unknown. We still kinda love them anyway.

El Matador State Beach
Photograph: Courtesy Adele Payman
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The more people talk about some standout secret, the less it’s, you know, secret. Something once hush-hush suddenly becomes everyone’s favorite Instagram spot, and any semblance of it being only for those in-the-know is gone. We’ll fess up: We’re as guilty as any publication of glorifying L.A.’s best secrets. But you won’t find us calling these five spots below “secret”—even though plenty of other Angelenos pretend their cover hasn’t been blown yet. But that’s alright: We still love these spots anyway—mostly.

Good Times at Davey Wayne's
Photograph: Jakob N. Layman
Bars, Dive bars

Good Times at Davey Wayne’s (and speakeasies in general)

icon-location-pin Hollywood

As is the case at seemingly all speakeasies, this watering hole’s late-night line betrays its unmarked entrance. But walk through the fridge (yeah, we still get a kick out of it) on a weekend afternoon and you’ll find a lovely, laid-back patio bar.

Sunken City
Photograph: Courtesy Yelp/Lee L
Attractions, Historic buildings and sites

Sunken City

icon-location-pin San Pedro

Neither Atlantis nor Pompei, these fenced-off ruins are all that remain after a 1929 landslide along an oceanfront San Pedro neighborhood. The slabs of concrete on the dirt-topped bluff have attracted the attention of seemingly every Instagrammer and tagger south of the 105.

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Hollywood Reservoir
Photograph: Courtesy CC/Flickr/Eden, Janine and Jim
Attractions, Parks and gardens

Hollywood Reservoir

icon-location-pin Hollywood

Like most of L.A.’s reservoirs, a chain-link fence along the perimeter separates you from the man-made lake. Throw in this reservoir’s nearness to the 101 and the area’s go-to tour-bus stop, and it’s anything but a pastoral secret. But we’re not total cynics: This spot is beautiful.

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El Matador State Beach
Photograph: Shutterstock
Attractions, Beaches

El Matador State Beach

icon-location-pin Malibu

At the bottom of a cliff, Malibu’s heavenly cove hides caves and rock formations. But the race to claim some real estate in the limited high-tide sand will pit you against families, engagement shoots and sunset photographers.

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