California Science Center

#20 in Best Things To Do in Los Angeles
California Science Center picture
ATOMIC Hot Links/Flickr

Key Info

700 Exposition Park Dr.

Price & Hours

Free

Details

Museums, Free Type
2 hours to Half Day Time to Spend
3.9

scorecard

  • 5.0Value
  • 4.0Facilities
  • 3.5Atmosphere

A world of fun and exploration await kids, as well as curious adults, at the California Science Center. In the permanent "Ecosystems" exhibit, museumgoers will learn about everything from islands to rivers to forests across eight different zones via interactive displays. In "Creative World," technology takes center stage and explores the innovation in transportation and architecture. But the top draw for recent travelers? The museum's "Air & Space" section which includes the Gemini 11 capsule piloted by Dick Gordon and Pete Conrad as well as a special exhibit about the Endeavor space shuttle. An IMAX theater is also on-site. Recent visitors say the center is wonderful, lots of fun and especially great for kids.

The center is free to visit, though special exhibits and IMAX screenings incur a fee. Access to the Endeavor is included with an IMAX or special exhibit ticket. On weekends and holidays, a timed ticket is required to visit Endeavor. The museum is open daily from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Parking costs $12. You can also take the Metro Expo Line to Expo Park/USC Station and walk five minutes to the center. Visit the center's website for more information.

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Griffith Observatory and Griffith Park1 of 26
The Getty Center2 of 26
Type
Time to Spend
#1 Griffith Observatory and Griffith Park

Griffith Observatory sits on the south face of Mount Hollywood and overlooks the Los Angeles basin. Its location gives visitors impressive views of the surrounding area, which many rave about. But there's more than just a pretty photo-op here. The observatory hosts fascinating exhibitions and features a top-notch planetarium.

Most recent visitors cited the beautiful setting as Griffith Observatory's main draw, though the free entry was certainly a bonus. However, you will have to pay between $3 and $7 to see the planetarium shows. Griffith Observatory is open from noon to 10 p.m. Tuesday through Friday, with extended hours on weekends. Free but limited parking is available along the winding roads leading up to the property, or visitors can park in the small lot by the observatory for $10 per hour. A gift shop and cafe can be found on-site as well. For more information, check out Griffith Observatory's website.

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