Visit Griffith Park in Los Angeles

Coming to our city?  One must visit Griffith Park in Los Angeles …. or at least part of it.  At just under 5000 acres, the park is one of the largest urban parks in the United States, and North America.  Griffith Park in Los Angeles is about 5 times the size of Central Park in New York!

Approximately 3000 acres were donated to the city by Griffith J. Griffith in 1896, and it’s continued to grow in size ever since.  All of us native Angelenos take advantage of the numerous hiking trails throughout the park.  Most are dog-friendly, as are most things in Los Angeles.  Many of the best hiking trails start at or near the gem of the park, the Griffith Park Observatory.  Here’s a handful other popular things to do, and even some secrets that only the locals know about:

Visit Griffith Park Observatory

Visit Griffith Park Observatory

The Griffith Park Observatory

Known as Southern California’s gateway to the cosmos, as well as some of the best views in Los Angeles.  The facility hosts a Tesla coil dating back to 1910, a planetarium, public telescopes and star parties.  The classic 1955 film, Rebel Without a Cause, filmed here along with dozens of other popular movies and TV shows.  There’s even a popular photo op with the bust of James Dean with the Hollywood sign in the background.

Admission to the venue and parking is always FREE, but tickets must be purchased for the planetarium shows.

The Merry-Go-Round in Griffith Park

This spectacular carousel dates back to 1926, and has been part of the park since 1937.  The band organ which accompanies the merry-go-round, can play over 1500 different songs. Look for the picture of Walt Disney’s daughters enjoying the ride, as one imagines this was part of the inspiration for the original Disneyland in nearby Anaheim.


Bat Cave from Batman with View of the Hollywood Sign

Bat Cave from Batman with View of the Hollywood Sign

The Abandoned Zoo in Griffith Park

Originally opened in 1912, the old zoo remnants still stand today.  Small steel cages, and stonework animal pens, make this area somewhat eerie and sad.  It closed in 1966, as the much larger Los Angeles Zoo opened less than a mile away.

Griffith Park Abandoned Zoo Hike

Griffith Park Abandoned Zoo Hike

Travel Town Museum

This 1952 attraction chronicles the history of railroad transportation from the 1880’s through the 1930’s with over 43 railroad engines and cars on display.  Many of these welcome kids and their families to climb on board and get a true engineer’s experience.

Griffith Park also includes golf courses, equestrian trails, tennis courts, pony rides, a miniature train ride, Bronson Caves (filming location for the bat cave from the original Batman series from the 60’s) The Autry Museum of the American West, and of course, our Hollywood sign.

Most of the above can be self-guided for guests visiting our city.  Short on time, and wish to get a quick overview with a visit to Griffith Park in Los Angeles?  Let Glitterati Tours showcase all, or any of the above, during a private tour of L.A. and Beverly Hills.