5 awesome attractions that kids will love in Los Angeles

Raluca Loteanu August 31, 2017
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things to do in los angeles with young kids

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If you are looking for things to do in Los Angeles with young kids, here are 5 awesome attractions that children will love! I've also included some additional suggestions and hotel recommendations to help you plan your vacation.

What I love about young kids is that they can express their joy in such a wonderful way! When they are happy, they are not afraid to show it!

One of the things that I enjoy most about traveling with my child to a lot of different places is to see the joy in his eyes when he discovers something that he likes!

I will never forget the moment when he entered Minnie’s house at Disneyland and he hugged her. He was so happy! Or when he discovered a piano in the Children’s Museum at La Habra and I told him that he can play it! He spent half an hour playing the piano with a big smile on his face.

These are two of the moments that he talked about over and over again after our trip to Los Angeles.

It’s amazing how easy it is for kids to find joy in the simplest things! And I love this! It’s something that we all should learn from them.

If you plan to visit Los Angeles with your kids, I’ve gathered here 5 recommendations that they will really like! And you will enjoy them too! At the end, you will also find some hotel recommendations, in case you are looking for accommodation too!

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1. Disneyland and Disney California Adventure

It’s almost impossible to talk about visiting Los Angeles with kids and not mention Disneyland! It is a magical place for kids. But it can also easily become overwhelming if you are not well prepared for it!Our trip to Disneyland

If you want to visit Disneyland, here are some tips that can be really helpful: 8 top tips for visiting Disneyland with young kids {and enjoying it!}. I wish I knew all this before our trip and I hope that they will make your visit easier to handle and a lot more fun!

But Los Angeles has much more to offer to kids than Disneyland! The city is full of attractions for kids of all ages! Next, I will tell you about 4 awesome places that are perfect for young kids and can be great destinations to include in your vacation schedule!

2. California Science Center

This museum is a wonderful place to spend half a day with your child! It is located in Exposition Park and it offers plenty things to see and do. And many hands-on activities for kids!

It has some nice discovery rooms where young kids can play and learn (Discovery Rooms for Little Learners). My son really enjoyed them! He also likes the hurricane simulator. He laughed a lot in that capsule while the wind was blowing quickly around him! 🙂

One of the major attractions in the museum is the Space Shuttle Endeavour. It is displayed in a separate pavilion and it’s a great opportunity to talk with kids about space. We also tried the Endeavour flight simulator and we had a lot of fun!

You can find all the details for visiting the California Science Center here.If you plan a family trip to Los Angeles, I hope that our itinerary will inspire you! We had 5 days full of amazing experiences! | Los Angeles with kids | Pacific Coast with kids

3. Griffith Park

If you want to find many child-friendly attractions in just one place, the Griffith Park is the best destination!

Here are some of the attractions in the park:

– Griffith Observatory

It offers amazing views of Los Angeles and many astronomy and science exhibits. We liked the Foucault Pendulum and the exhibit about the solar system.

The entrance is free but the place is pretty crowded, so it’s best to visit it in the morning. You can find all the details here.

– Los Angeles Zoo & Botanical Gardens

The location is very popular but due to its size, it doesn’t feel crowded. The Zoo is home to more than 1,100 mammals, birds, amphibians, and reptiles.

You’ll find all the information for planning your visit here.

– Travel Town – Los Angeles Live Steamers Railroad Museum

If your kids love trains, this is an awesome place to visit! Kids can ride a miniature train around more than a mile of track. They can also visit museum’s buildings, which are in fact full-size train cars.

The official site of the museum is here. The museum can only be visited on Sundays.things to do in los angeles with young kidsPhoto by Rob Bye on Unsplash

4. Children’s Museum at La Habra

This museum is located near Los Angeles, so the drive to get there might be long depending on which hotel you stay at. But the good news is that the museum is less crowded than other L.A. museums and it’s designed for young kids.

We spent half a day there and we loved the place! It has a small carousel, a room with electric trains, and a science room. It also has an “On stage” exhibition where kids can try different costumes and play the piano. Each room has hands-on activities that can keep kids busy for hours!

You can find all the details about the museum here.things to do in los angeles with young kids

5. Descanso Gardens

Visiting Los Angeles can be tiring because there are so many things to do there! Especially when you have young kids an L.A. vacation can easily drain your energy!

So if you need to spend a quiet half a day after some busy days, the Descanso Gardens are a very good place to visit!

The kids will have a lot of room to run around and explore the nature! And you will enjoy a relaxing time far away from the city’s tumult! A must-see attraction for young kids is the Enchanted Railroad, where little ones can ride a train! You can also find daily story time taking place there.

If you want to visit the gardens, you can find more information here.

More awesome child-friendly attractions in Los Angeles

When it comes to attractions for kids, Los Angeles has plenty to offer! Here are some additional recommendations that you and your kids could add to your vacation schedule!

Aquarium of the Pacific: It’s located in Downtown Long Beach.

Kidspace Children’ Museum in Pasadena: It’s a truly unique museum with a lot of hands-on activities for young kids. The place is huge and can keep kids entertained for hours! The only downside is that it can be sometimes very busy so it’s good to choose hours when it’s less crowded.

Discovery Cube: This museum is focused on science and STEM activities. It has two locations and it is less crowded than other museums.

Getty Center: This museum is focused on art so it may not seem a good place to visit with young kids. But it has a beautiful garden with amazing views and a Family Room with five hands-on activities for kids.

Santa Monica Pier: This place can get really crowded especially in the evenings. But it is also a very beautiful location! It has a wonderful beach and a nice promenade. On the pier, you can also find an amusement park for families but in my opinion, it is way too crowded and chaotic for young kids.If you plan a family trip to Los Angeles, I hope that our itinerary will inspire you! We had 5 days full of amazing experiences! | Los Angeles with kids | Pacific Coast with kids

Our hotel recommendations

Los Angeles is a huge city and the drives between different attractions are long. Especially because the traffic can be heavy almost the whole day!

When you pick the hotel, it’s good to make your decision depending on what area of the city you most want to visit. We stayed at a hotel in Anaheim, near Disneyland because the main reason of our trip was to take Bogdan to see Disneyland. It was a good decision for our plans but it meant a lot of time spent in the car to be able to visit the other attractions.

Here are some hotels that may be a good choice for you depending on what areas of the town you want to visit more.

in downtown Los Angeles (the area has expensive hotels but also many attractions)

Courtyard by Marriott Los Angeles L.A. LIVE

The LA Hotel Downtown

Luxe City Center Hotel

near Venice Beach

Boutique 444 Venice Beach – a nice hotel near the beachthings to do in los angeles with young kidsPhoto by Austin Dixon on Unsplash

in Hollywood

Best Western Plus Hollywood Hills Hotel – near Hollywood Strip

Magic Castle Hotel – a 3-star hotel near Universal Studios

in Anaheim, near Disneyland

Courtyard by Marriott Anaheim Theme Park Entrance – the hotel is right near Disneyland and it has a private water park

Residence Inn by Marriott at Anaheim Resort/Convention Center – the hotel also has Disney themed suites

No matter what area of the city you do choose, it is good to book the hotel with some time in advance in order to get better rates. Los Angeles is an expensive city but you can find good deals if you plan your visit in advance.


I wish you a wonderful vacation and I hope that you and your kids will truly enjoy Los Angeles!

Useful travel tips from Playful Notes

5 helpful ideas you need to keep your young kids happy on an airplane {+ freebie}

10 must-have items for traveling with kids (from our experience)

How to “survive” a long-haul flight with a young child {our top tips}

Travel binder for young kids: a great way to have fun (and quiet moments) on the road [printable]

Our favorite smart packing travel tips (+ printable family packing list)

If you are looking for things to do in Los Angeles with young kids, here are 5 awesome attractions that children will love! | Things to do with kids in Los Angeles | Los Angeles with young kids | Los Angeles with toddlers | Los Angeles with preschoolers | Things to do with children in Los Angeles | Family trip | Family travel

If you are looking for things to do in Los Angeles with young kids, here are 5 awesome attractions that children will love! | Things to do with kids in Los Angeles | Los Angeles with young kids | Los Angeles with toddlers | Los Angeles with preschoolers | Things to do with children in Los Angeles | Family trip | Family travel
If you are looking for things to do in Los Angeles with young kids, here are 5 awesome attractions that children will love! | Things to do with kids in Los Angeles | Los Angeles with young kids | Los Angeles with toddlers | Los Angeles with preschoolers | Things to do with children in Los Angeles | Family trip | Family travel

Preview photo by Olenka Kotyk on Unsplash

Category: Destinations
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Raluca Loteanu

If you find yourself on this blog I invite you to discover us as the happy family we are, who look with optimism and joy at life. If you want to contact me, you can find me on email, I gladly respond to each message.

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