2800 E Observatory Rd
Los Angeles, CA 90027
Science & Nature Museum
Griffith Observatory Description
The iconic observatory just underwent a four-year, $93 million renovation and is better than ever. The highlight for most kids (and adults) is the high-tech planetarium show, a guided tour of an eerily realistic night sky in the observatory's big dome. In the exhibit hall, kids can also decimate a planet with meteorites (on a computer that shakes on virtual impact), figure out their weight on different planets, and climb up into the dome to look through the Zeiss telescope. The site is beautiful during the day, but if you go at night you can view the sky through free-standing telescopes.
Toddlers & Pre-K: They probably won't "get" the observatory, and they're generally not encouraged to attend the planetarium shows. Playing on the lawn should be fun, however.
School-Age Kids: The exhibits here will dovetail with some of what they're learning at school, plus they'll like all the high-tech gadgetry.
Pre-Teens & Teens: Older kids will learn from the exhibits and appreciate the sheer majesty of the stars.
- There's a Wolfgang Puck-operated cafe at the observatory. Consider buying sandwiches and taking them outdoors. You'll be treated to an amazing view of the city, stretching to the ocean on a clear day, and several easy hiking trails start right outside the observatory's door.
Just the Facts
Hours: Noon-10 p.m., weekdays; 10 a.m.-10 p.m., weekends; closed Mondays
Fees: Under $10
Recommended Time: 2 to 4 hours