Fun Things for Kids to Do in Los Angeles

Fun Things for Kids to Do in Los Angeles
Finding fun things for kids to do in Los Angeles is a treat. This sunshine-loving city has some fascinating places to explore. When you need a break from all of the star-studded attractions of Hollywood, like the Walk of Fame or Chinatown, head for the hills and explore the outdoor adventures of Griffith Park and Runyon Canyon. Exploring Los Angeles with children can be an unforgettable vacation.

Hike Runyon Canyon

The Runyon Canyon hiking trail in the Hollywood Hills offers three scenic overlooks where hikers can see the immense buildings that house motion picture sound stages, celebrity mansions and, of course, the famous Hollywood sign. This trail is dog-friendly, and leashes are not required. If your children enjoy dog-watching, the hike will be unlike any other. It's fairly heavily populated, and the variety of people you meet on the trail are distinctively "Hollywood." Check the Trails.com map for maps and parking directions for each of the three entrance points and helpful information about the terrain and distinctive chaparral wildlife and plants along the trail.

Runyon Canyon Park
Los Angeles, California
(323) 666-5046
www.lamountains.com/parks.asp?parkid=122

Walking Tour of Chinatown

Like stepping into another country, beginning at the Gate of Filial Piety, the distinctive entrance to Chinatown is a Los Angeles landmark. Built in 1938, it's just one of many marvelous wonders built as a testament to Asian-inspired beauty and culture in the heart of L.A. Kids enjoy the space-age look of the sculptured landscaping, dragon and lion statues and Chinese signs. Some residents of Chinatown have never left the neighborhood and can be seen on their porch playing MahJong above narrow winding sidewalks while the smell of Chinese spices wafts out from the restaurants below. Browse through the bazaar-style market vendors for Chinese delicacies, herbal medicines and imported products. Art galleries and museums throughout the neighborhood tell of the migration to the area and the struggles of early residents.

Adjacent to Chinatown is the Los Angeles State Historic Park. Once the home of the Pacific Railway Station, these 32 acres of award-winning landscaping and design make this a world-class park. The park hosts music events and art festivals, plus winding pathways for bicycling, jogging or walking that frame an expansive lawn. This just might be the best place in Los Angeles to fly a kite. The park lies between Broadway and Alameda, just north of College Street.

Gate of Filial Piety
946 N. Broadway
Los Angeles, CA 90012
www.chinatownla.com

Los Angeles State Historic Park
Los Angeles, CA 90012
(213) 620-6152
www.ca.gov

Bike the L.A. River Basin

The Los Angeles River Bikeway starts at Griffith Park and extends to Elysian Park, with the river on one side and the freeway on the other. It's a fairly long path, which is being extended past Elysian Park to meet a goal of 52 miles of conjoined bike paths running through Los Angeles. Families with small children may choose to stay in Griffith park, the Crystal Springs loop. Spokes 'n' Stuff Bike Rental is in Griffith Park and has bikes for adults and children.

Griffith Park is in the hills and houses the Los Angeles Zoo, a steam train that kids can ride, an old-fashioned carousel, the Griffith Observatory and several playgrounds, hiking trails and scenic vistas.

Griffith Park
4730 Crystal Springs Drive
Los Angeles, California 90027
(323) 913-4688
www.laparks.org

Spokes 'n Stuff bike rental
4400 Crystal Springs Drive
Los Angeles, California 90027
(323) 662-6573
www.spokes-n-stuff.com

Article Written By Lisa Russell

Lisa Russell has been a freelance writer since 1998. She's been published in "Rethinking Everything Magazine," "Playdate" and "Home Educator's Family Times." She has a professional background in education, cosmetology and the restaurant industry. Russell studied early childhood education at Antelope Valley College, and is pursuing a degree in law.

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