(credit: Aquarium of the Pacific)

(credit: Aquarium of the Pacific)

L.A. has a reputation of being a kind of adult playground. There are all those “Hollywood nights,” we learn about from movies and TV. However, with all the entertainment talent in the visual mediums, a lot of that great talent also gets invested in creating activities for parents and children to share together. And we’re not just talking about amusement parks. Not that there’s anything wrong with amusement parks, it’s just that learning can be fun and entertaining, and with said television and video games and movies, children these days get more than enough amusement. Why not plan a day to do have fun and increase knowledge and understanding at the same time. It can’t hurt, right? Listed below are just a few parent-child activities in the L.A. and surrounding areas. Try these, and then explore others.
(credit: Monkey Business Images/shutterstock)

(credit: Monkey Business Images/shutterstock)

Babies & Cookies
2309 Main St.
Santa Monica, CA 90405
(310) 452-1301

Babies & Cookies is the kind of place where you want your young one to have a play date, but you don’t want to go through the trouble of planning or hosting one. These folks will plan the books and cookie bash for you. There you’ll find a bookstore an enrichment center, a learn and play area and an events center. There are few things young ones like better than books and cookies. Books they need, and cookies they want. But both will make ’em feel good.

(credit: Underwood Family Farms)

(credit: Underwood Family Farms)

Underwood Family Farms
3370 Sunset Valley Road
Moorpark, CA 93021
(805) 529-3690

Sure, you can read about animals to your little ones. You can have them make the different animal noises. You can event them color pictures of ’em in coloring books. But there ain’t nothing like the real thing, baby, as the old Motown song used to say. In nearby Moorpark you can take your future farmer of America to a real working farm. They have crops to explore and real, live animals.

LOS ANGELES, CA - NOVEMBER 02:  The Griffith Observatory overlooks Los Angeles from atop the Hollywood Hills on the eve of the re-opening on November 2, 2006 in Los Angeles, California. The observatory will be accessible to the public after a $93 million five-year renovation that restored the weathered exterior, updated exhibits, and doubled its floor space by adding an underground level. The observatory has been a destination for star-gazers and students and has appeared in many Hollywood movies since it first opened in 1935.    (credit: David McNew/Getty Images)

(credit: David McNew/Getty Images)

Griffith Obervatory
2800 E. Observatory Road
Los Angeles, CA 90027
(213) 473-0800

You can joke about seeing stars in Hollywood, but there’s nothing quite like seeing actual stars. You know, those things in the sky that Angelenos rarely get to see because of the bright lights of our city? We usually can’t see ’em very well in Los Angeles, but with the big telescopes you can see stars and also planets. There are also plenty of things to do. Parents and children can bond here over the amazement of outer space.

(credit: Aquarium of the Pacific)

(credit: Aquarium of the Pacific)

Aquarium of the Pacific
100 Aquarium Way,
Long Beach, CA 90802
(562) 590-3100

After you’ve explored outer space, why not explore under the sea? Right there on the edge of Pacific Ocean, in nearby Long Beach, there is an aquarium that will put most any home fish tank to shame. Here you can see great sea mammals, as well as little bitty fish. There are also plenty of learning opportunities. In SoCal, we live right by an ocean. It’s a good thing to learn about your local watery echo system.

Related: Best Kid-Friendly Museums In Los Angeles