Wrapping up my vacation/food tour series, I finally boldly went back where everyone in LA has gone before — Griffith Observatory! I hadn’t been there since before they closed to renovate/expand back in 2002, so I was looking forward to checking it out!
Like the National Air and Space Museum of the Smithsonian Institution in Washington, D.C., the Griffith Observatory is a great place to visit if you’re an astronomy nut (like me)! It opened in 1935 and is located on Mount Hollywood in Los Angeles’ Griffith Park (I’ve actually never checked out the rest of the park ^^; ). They bring telescopes out to the lawn in the evening, but we didn’t stay long enough to take part.
I missed the legend that details what the symbols signify; they seem to be of various scientific disciplines.
Once you go through the doors, you’re in the W.M. Keck Foundation Central Rotunda, and when you look up, you’ll see these huge balling murals! Seriously, they’re the Hugo Ballin Murals, painted in 1934.
You can get some nice views of downtown from up here! I’ve never hiked up to the Hollywood sign; have you?
The Gottlieb Transit Corridor allows you to track the passage of time and the cycle of the seasons, though I’m not really sure how to read it. ^^;
Here’s a lovely panoramic view of downtown (click it to enlarge).
Even though it’s behind glass here, you apparently can look through the 12-inch Zeiss refracting telescope (and the 9-1/2-inch refracting telescope atop it) on every clear night that the Observatory is open.
The Cosmic Connection, which is on the new lower level and leads to the Edge of Space exhibits, is a history of the universe.
These large scale-sized planets (notice Pluto is still among them) are in the Richard and Lois Gunther Depths of Space exhibit area.
There’s a 1/1 scale statue of one of my heroes, Albert Einstein, sitting in the Gunther Depths of Space just outside the Leonard Nimoy Event Horizon theater!
Back upstairs in the Wilder Hall of the Eye, they hold a Tesla Coil demonstration several times a day.
Since we were nearby, we made a stop at Pink’s for some Mulholland Drive dogs (and an Orange Crush)! :9
There’s so much to see and do at Griffith Observatory, and admission and parking (if you can find it) is free! Definitely worth the trip if you’re in the area, and I hope to visit again soon!
Full Coverage of Vacation/Food Tour 2014: