Griffith Park Observatory

Griffith Park Observatory


In addition to being an oasis of nature and outdoor activity in an otherwise bustling metropolis, Griffith Park is also home to the Griffith Observatory (http://www.griffithobs.org/), which sits high up above the San Fernando Valley and the City of Los Angeles and offers visitors a chance to see another kind of star than the usual Hollywood suspects. The Griffith Observatory was first built in 1933 and underwent a major renovation and expansion in 2002. Admission to the observatory has always been free to the public, as decreed in Griffith’s will, though tickets must be purchases for the Samuel Oschin Planetarium Theater if you are over the age of five. Children under five are only allowed during the first show of the day. The observatory is well-recognized as it was used as a major filming location for the James Dean classic, Rebel Without a Cause.

There are a number of things to see and do during a visit to Griffith Observatory. It’s open from 12-10pm Tuesday-Friday and 10am-10pm on Saturday and Sunday. The observatory is closed Mondays. Parking is limited so visitors are encouraged to come in groups and tours or even ride their bikes or use the hiking trails. There is also a public bus service on the weekends from the Vermont/Sunset Metro Line. Once at the observatory, you can see one of the two live planetarium shows, or check out the 200-seat Leonard Nimoy Event Horizon theater, which shows information and educational films.

There are also public star parties held monthly and put on by the Los Angeles Astronomical Society and the Los Angeles Sidewalk Astronomers. Come out and look through a variety of telescopes at the wonders of the night sky. And of course, make your way to the enormous Zeiss Telescope during an evening visit for an astronomical view.




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