Freckles in April: Visiting Los Angeles with Kids

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Visiting Los Angeles with Kids

Over the next few weeks I'll be posting about some of our road trip destinations along with a few recommendations for things to do with kids if you ever find yourself in the area. 

We arrived in the early evening and headed off to the Santa Monica pier. If you have bigger kids then the rides at Pacific Park will appeal. For our little boys we let them each choose a midway game and a treat then spent the rest of our evening strolling along the pier enjoying the breeze and the sunset.

Parking costs vary but when we went (a weekend during the high season) it was $15 to park in the lot. There are other (cheaper!) parking options further out though. We spent $5/kid on midway games. You could also buy tickets for the rides or do unlimited wristbands (pricing info here).

On Saturday we threw around a few ideas for things to do (Venice Beach, the Kidspace Museum) but I decided I wanted to revisit one of my childhood favorites- the La Brea Tar Pits.

The tar pits are this crazy primordial spot right smack dab in the middle of LA. They've excavated thousands and thousands of Ice Age fossils from the pits and they're still working. There are active excavations going on and you can often see people at work in and around the pits. Watch your step- tar oozes up all over the place around the grounds!

We only had enough time to walk around and view the outdoor excavation areas but there's also a really fun museum. Stinky was sad to miss out on the museum (I was too, there's super cool stuff in there) but the grounds alone are pretty awesome with lots to see, including an active excavation pit.

There is a paid parking lot but it was full when we arrived and we ended up finding cheaper metered parking one street over. Walking around the grounds is free and there's plenty of stuff to look at but the museum is fairly affordable. A basic ticket is $12 for adults and $9 for kids (more pricing info here).

Right next door to the La Brea Tar Pits is the LA County Museum of Art (LACMA). We didn't go inside but there are several outdoor installations that kids will thing are pretty neat, like this...spaghetti forest? And a giant boulder they can walk under. Having modern art next to tar pits full of ancient bones is a pretty interesting juxtaposition. That's LA for you!


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