Families don’t even have to leave the Los Angeles area to explore some of the country’s best kid-friendly museums. From exploring the past to sustaining the future, from playtime to hands-on-educational opportunities, these fabulous L.A. museums offer children of all ages the best in discovering history, science, technology, culture, art, and learning.
California Science Center
700 Exposition Park Dr.
Los Angeles, CA 90037
Located in Exposition Park, the California Science Center offers free admission year-round making it the perfect museum for large families. Home to the Space Shuttle Endeavor, kids interested in the space program must take a visit to this exciting museum. In addition to the shuttle, major exhibits include Worlds of Life, exploring the living world; Creative World, which takes a look at technology and innovation; and Ecosystems, with a massive marine life tank at its core. Kids 7 and under will love the Discovery Rooms located inside each exhibit.
Discovery Cube Los Angeles
11800 Foothill Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA
As the sister to the Discovery Cube in Santa Ana, Los Angeles’ version opened in northeast Los Angeles in late 2014. With a focus on STEM education, the museum exists to promote educational support and stimulation that will inspire future city leaders in the fields of science, technology, engineering, and math. Kids love the hands-on exhibits including the chance to make a home environmentally friendly, recycle and compost, and learn the basics of healthy food choices. The Science of Hockey exhibit opened earlier this year, the perfect exhibit for sports fans.
Page Museum at the La Brea Tar Pits
5801 Wilshire Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90036
Located in the heart of Los Angeles, the Page Museum at the La Brea Tar Pits is one of the world’s most famous fossil localities. The indoor museum includes a unique display of Ice Age fossils including saber-toothed cats, dire wolves, and mammoths. Budding paleontologists can also observe as scientists prepare actual fossils from Project 23 including “Zed,” the male Columbian mammoth.
Natural History Museum of Los Angeles
900 Exposition Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA 90007
With over 35 million specimens, dating back 4.5 billion years, the Natural History Museum of Los Angeles aims to give children the “big picture” of the planet including both the natural and cultural world. Kid-friendly favorites at this sprawling museum include Dinosaur hall, home to more than 300 fossils including 20 fully complete dinosaurs, and the Nature Lab, a hands-on, always changing display area where kids can learn about numerous animals and plants in addition to discovering their role in conservation of all species.
Ronald Reagan Presidential Library and Museum
40 Presidential Dr.
Simi Valley, CA 93065
Part of the National Archives, the Reagan Library boasts over 60 million pages of documents, 1.6 million photos, and 40,000 artifacts relating to the eight-year period that Reagan served as president. The museum is surprisingly kid-friendly with the chance to walk on board the actual Air Force One aircraft that flew seven U.S. presidents, and a full-size replica of the White House Oval Office, giving families the chance to see what it might feel like to be one of the most powerful people in the world.
Kidspace Children’s Museum
480 N Arroyo Blvd.
Pasadena, CA 91103
With a goal of nurturing the potential of all children through kid-driven experiences and inspiring them to become joyful, active learners, Kidspace Children’s Museum in Pasadena provides an experiential learning environment for kids under 10 and their families. Informal, “free-range learning” experiences give kids hands-on experiences, including a detailed investigation and discovery of bugs, butterflies, and spiders. Kids love the outdoor water feature fun, perfect for a warm summer day.
Zimmer Children’s Museum
6505 Wilshire Blvd #100
Los Angeles, CA 90048
“Playing our way to a better world,” the Zimmer Children’s Museum is a small but well-orchestrated museum for the youngest of visitors. Interactive learning, creative self-expression, and art experiences abound for preschool-age and toddler children. Kids love the imaginative role play offered on Main Street and at the Aid and Rescue Center and the Construction Zone and Community Park help teach even the littlest ones about community responsibility and taking care of planet earth.
1200 Getty Center Dr.
Los Angeles, CA 90049
Undoubtedly one of L.A.’s premiere art museums for visitors of any age, The Getty Museum is a great place to introduce young children to the world of art. The museum welcomes visitors of all ages and encourages families to explore the world of art with their children through scavenger hunts, family events, and art-inspired activities. Pack a picnic lunch (or purchase at one of the onsite restaurants) for when your little ones need a breath of fresh air.
The Skirball Cultural Center
2701 N Sepulveda Blvd.
Los Angeles, CA 90049
Various cultural exhibitions are displayed at the Skirball Cultural Center throughout the year, but the kid-friendly favorite that draws in the younger crowd has to be the Noah’s Ark exhibit. Kids can join in the fun of this story by climbing, building, and pretending to feed the animals that call this massive ark home. Numerous family-friendly events, including their popular puppet festival, are offered throughout the year.