The Daily Grind Video
View of Hollywood sign from far

Source: Khaichuin Sim / Getty

Tourists travel from all over the world to see one of Hollywood’s most captured signs in person. Originally erected on this day in 1923 as a billboard for a new residential development, the Hollywood Sign appeared in the hills above Hollywood, Los Angeles. A sign that transformed from a simple advertisement to one of the world’s most sought after tourist attractions.

It originally read “Hollywoodland” but the four last letters were dropped after renovation in 1949.

The sign was donated to the city of Los Angeles in 1944, and it was in such a state of disrepair that the city’s Recreation and Parks Commission wanted it torn down completely. However, the Hollywood Chamber of Commerce and local residents resisted and won the day.

It was eventually decided to tear down the old sign and rebuild it but without “land” at the end. Since then, it has become an emblem for the film industry and the city of Los Angeles. In 1973, it was granted status as a historical cultural monument. The sign, once again, received another facelift in 1978 becoming the world’s largest sing. it was rebuild once again in 1978 as the world’s largest sign.

People often hike the various trails within Griffith Park to see the huge monument for themselves. Though tourists can’t get up to the top of the sign as it is heavily guarded with security, many have tried and succeeded. Once in awhile, someone makes their way to the top to tag the sign or change the lettering all together.

The larger-than-life symbol has become revered as a symbol of the entertainment business. Hollywood also offers a number of other landmarks like the infamous star-studded Walk of Fame and TCL Chinese Theatre. Other highlights surrounding the neighborhood include Paramount Pictures, historic music venues like the Hollywood Bowl, and Dolby Theatre, which is home of the Oscars.

Tourists can usually choose from a selection of improv comedy clubs, retro bars, hip eateries and velvet-roped nightclubs. Still, the most sought after tourist hot spot is The Hollywood Sign.