Southern California has everything a traveler could ask for: mountains, beaches and deserts are each no more than an hour’s drive from Los Angeles. Gourmet dining, world class theme parks, gorgeous weather, up-to-the-minute shops; need I go on?
The next time you find yourself in The City of Angeles, be sure to check out one of its cutting-edge museums (or three or five!)
The Broad is one of the newest additions to the downtown landscape. Founded by philanthropists Eli and Edythe Broad in 2015, the contemporary art museum offers free general admission every day! Important works by Andy Warhol, Jean-Michel Basquiat, Jeff Koons, Cindy Sherman, and Roy Lichtenstein, are among the over 2000 artworks housed here. Architecture buffs take note: the stark white building is an architectural wonder in and of itself.
The Huntington Library, Art Collections, and Botanical Gardens has a little something for everyone to delight in. With 120 acres of exquisitely landscaped gardens (including a Japanese Garden, a Desert Garden, and a Chinese Garden) the outdoor environment is a visual treat in its own right. But the grounds also feature a world-renowned library as well as two art galleries chock full of 15th century to early 20th century European art, and an equally impressive collection of American art from the late 17th to the mid-20th century.
Every school child in the southland taken a field trip to The La Brea Tar Pits, and for good reason: it is the country’s sole active urban paleontological dig site. The Museum contains a fascinating array of Ice Age fossils, including extinct saber-toothed cats, wolves, and mammoths.
Admission to the iconic Griffith Observatory, the most-visited public observatory in the world, is free. More than one million visitors explore the hilltop grounds annually, which also include a public planetarium and exhibition area. With three live shows daily, plus the popular Tesla Coil, there is something to enjoy for every member of the family.
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Chances are you’ve seen the photogenic Norton Simon Museum many times throughout your life. The humble but imposing brown building is in the middle of all the action each year when the spectacular Rose Parade floats by. Degas, Raphael, Manet, Rembrandt, Van Gogh and Picasso are well represented among European artists. The Museum’s verdant sculpture garden is meant to evoke Monet’s garden at Giverny and houses many significant sculptures from the 19th- and 20th-centuries.
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The world-renowned J. Paul Getty Museum boasts a far ranging collection of pre-20th-century European paintings and sculptures, 19th- and 20th-century Asian, American, and European photographs, as well as modern and contemporary sculpture. With its panoramic views of L.A., and lush, landscaped gardens it is the crown jewel in the city’s string of first-class art museums.