Want to SAVE, EMAIL, and PRINT your picks? Sign up for a Purple Passport account to get started.
4730 Crystal Springs Dr. (Hollywood Hills)
Los Angeles, CA
(1) 213-473-0800 | www.laparks.org
ATTRACTIONPark with Observatory
HOURS/TIMESPark: Daily: 5:30am-10:30pm; Observatory: Tue.-Fri.: 12:00pm-10:00pm, Sat.-Sun.: 10:00am-10:00pm, Mon.: Closed
PRICE (PARK; OBSERVATORY: GENERAL ADMISSION; PLANETARIUM SHOWS: ADULT; CHILD (5-12); YOUNG CHILDREN (BELOW 4))Free; free; USD 7; USD 3; free
RESERVE IN ADVANCENo
WAIT TIME WITHOUT RESERVATIONNone
HIGHLIGHTSObservatory; Ferndell Trail; Los Angeles Zoo
Griffith Park is the largest urban park in the world, and it shows. Its range of offerings is staggering–whether your definition of a day at the park involves bonding with nature, shooting hoops, supping on cotton candy, or lounging with a cappuccino in the sunshine, you won’t be disappointed. There’s so much green space, you could easily get lost in its forests and even encounter “real” wildlife along its trails. But there are also acres of space devoted to not-so-roughing-it activities, ranging from a well-stocked zoo and cutting-edge sports facilities to a museum and a theater. The newly refurbished Observatory offers stellar city views as well as high-tech planetarium shows.
GO HERE WITH
Sports enthusiasts; hikers; friends; family; kids
WHY WE LIKE IT
It’s a relaxing break from the smoggy sprawl of LA–deep in the park you won’t even know you’re in a city. A great spot for photos, as some of the hikes go really close to the Hollywood sign, and the views of the city from the Observatory are unparalleled. We also like how there’s something for everyone–whether you need to entertain a grumpy 10-year old or woo a date with a romantic woodland stroll, you’ll find what you’re looking for.
WHAT WE WOULD CHANGE
Dog owners are often not very scrupulous about cleaning up after their pets.
GOOD TO KNOW
If you’re interested in hiking but nervous about striking out on your own, the park authority often organizes group hikes–check the website for details. If you’re going it alone, try the Ferndell Trail, which gives sweeping views of LA from the top of Mount Hollywood, or the Mount Lee trail, which takes you close to the Hollywood Sign. Bridle paths, hiking trails, and mountain roads all close at sunset, so make sure you leave yourself plenty of time to get back. Popular non-hiking activities include the Observatory, the Zoo, the Museum of the American West, the Greek Theater, and the Symphony in the Glen concert series–check the website for details about each attraction. Wolfgang Puck’s restaurant Café at the End of the Universe is housed in the Observatory. There’s plenty of free parking.
Hyde Park (London); Central Park (New York)
Read more about the Griffith Park and Observatory in The Diary
All information within this website was checked for accuracy at the time of publication. But since the world moves quickly, things may have changed. Pardon us for any errors as we strive to give you the most up-to-the-minute details!