Griffith Observatory in Los Angeles

Griffith Observatory in Los Angeles

Griffith Observatory in Los Angeles
Griffith Observatory in Los Angeles

Griffith Observatory is one of the iconic places in Los Angeles. The idea of its creation arose in 1908, when Colonel Jenkins Griffith saw the starry sky through the largest telescope at that time and decided that it would be nice for everyone to have such an opportunity. He was inspired by the idea of making astronomy accessible not only to scientists, but also to ordinary Americans, so he transferred the land to Los Angeles and paid for the construction of an observatory, exhibition halls and a planetarium. In May 1935 it was already open to visitors.

The “alien” appearance of the observatory attracted not only tourists, but also film directors. Scenes from The Terminator, Charlie's Angels, Transformers and other Hollywood blockbusters were filmed here.

What to See

The Griffith Observatory is located in the park of the same name, on the slope of Mount Hollywood, from where the same inscription is clearly visible and offers panoramic views of the Pacific Ocean and the city center. Right at the entrance you can see a sundial, a monument to famous astronomers and an engraving of the Solar System. In the building itself, under the largest dome, there is a huge Foucault pendulum, demonstrating the process of the Earth's rotation.

The observatory has several thematic exhibition halls. One of them is a model of the Solar System; special interactive stands have a detailed description. Other rooms have telescopes through which you can observe the Moon, as well as solar flares and sunspots.

In the planetarium. Samuel Ocean has three shows every day: “At the Center of the Universe”, “Water is Life” and “The Light of the Valkyries”. The auditorium seats 300 and the show lasts about half an hour.

On the roof and terraces of the observatory there are observation decks with telescopes, and under the building there is a museum, which is a smaller copy of the observatory, where many interesting artifacts are stored, for example, fragments of lunar soil. The museum has a children's interactive exhibition where you can find out your weight on different planets and even create a small artificial earthquake.

At the observatory there is a souvenir shop, a small cafe and parking (free, but there are few places).

Practical Information

Address: Los Angeles, 2800 East Observatory Road.

Opening hours: Tuesday - Friday 12:00-22:00, Saturday-Sunday 10:00-22:00, Monday - closed.

Entrance to the building and territory is free. Show in the planetarium: 7 USD for adults, 5 USD for students and pensioners over 60 years old (upon presentation of an ID), 3 USD for children from 5 to 12 years old, for children under 5 years old - free.

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