The Los Angeles Shipwreck hike is like a trip back in time complete with a beautiful view of the ocean. In 1961, the cargo ship Dominator crashed on the shores of Ranch Palos Verdes, California, and today its remains make for an enjoyable family hike. This is an excursion for a family with older children because the access down to the beach is fairly steep, and it’s quite a climb back to the top once the hike is complete. The beach is rocky, so good, close-toed shoes are needed. But as you navigate the crazy trail and the rocky shoreline, it adds to the excitement of finding the rusty, old ship. Pack a picnic lunch, sunblock and water, and then relax watching the surfers and the sea life along the coastline while searching for the wreckage.
The California Science Center is a must explore for kids of all ages and their parents. You can touch everything, and the kids are having so much fun they don’t even realize how much they are learning. There is an IMAX theater to take in a movie, a high wire bicycle for the adventurous and there are always great rotating exhibits like The Dead Sea Scrolls and the space shuttle Endeavor. While a portion of the science center is free (donation suggested), some of their exhibits do require advanced reservations and charge admission. Check out their website for the details.
The Old Zoo at Griffith Park was once the home of the Los Angeles Zoo before it moved to its current location in 1965. The old cages and animal enclosures have since been abandoned and are a fun place for families to spend the day exploring. There are many hiking trails around the Old Zoo, but the enclosures are near parking lots and just a short stroll from the car. There are plenty of picnic tables, so pack a lunch, and bring a camera to get plenty of pictures of the kids monkeying around. Watch out for camera crews because it seems there is always some sort of filming happening in this unique spot, which can make the day even more fun.
The Magic Castle is an exclusive, members-only magician’s club where you have to know somebody to get special access, and most of the time children are not allowed. But brunch on Saturday and Sunday mornings are the only times people under 21-years-old are allowed inside the castle for a meal and show. It is well worth the expense for the experience. If you don’t know a member magician to gain entrance to the brunch, staying the night at the Magic Castle Hotel will allow access. Check out their website for pricing and dress code. There are rooms that sleep up to six people, and the hotel gives free snacks.
Sunset Ranch Hollywood is a great way to enjoy a horseback ride and take in some of the most incredible views of Los Angeles. There are many options to choose from for a horseback ride, including shorter, one-hour rides to longer rides that include a meal, and even children’s birthday parties. Sunset Ranch offers a unique way to relax and spend some time in Los Angeles away from the hustle and bustle of the city.