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Best Museums in Los Angeles To Check Out (Part I)

While some of these museums may be closed due to COVID-19 restrictions, we encourage you to keep a look out for updates about reopenings. At the very least, you know now where to look when these halls of creativity open their doors once again. 

Los Angeles is known for many things: beautiful beaches, great food, Hollywood entertainment, active night scenes, and so so….so much more. Yet museums and art galleries, a staple of most metropolitan areas, do not garner the same level of attention as celebrity sightseeing. As friends and advocates of a few local multicultural artists, we wanted to share our love for this important aspect of California culture. Here are our top 10 best LA museums we promise you will not regret visiting during your stay with Open Air Homes.

The Broad

The Broad is easily one of the most iconic Los Angeles museums for lovers of contemporary art. It is home to some of the most beautifully mind-blowing pieces from legends like Andy Warhol, Ed Ruscha, Roy Lichtenstein and hundreds of other artists. The Broad is also home to the Infinity Mirrored Room by Yayoi Kusama’s which is definitely worth a visit.

The National History Museum of Los Angeles

If you are a fan of natural history and ancient artifacts, the National History Museum of Los Angeles should hit the spot for you. It is actually the largest natural history museum not only in LA but also in the West Coast.

California African American Museum

Also known as CAAM, the California African American Museum is an ode to African American history and culture in the west coast. It is home not only to culturally significant art pieces and memorabilia but also literature in the library section of this LA museum. 

The best part? CAAM offers free admission.

The Museum of Contemporary Art (MOCA)

One thing that makes the Museum of Contemporary Art stand out the most in the LA museum scene is the fact that it has something for everyone including art enthusiasts, newbies, and even children. 

MOCA technically has 3 locations but the Grand Avenue location is by far the most popular and with good reason as they exhibit some of the greatest modern and contemporary art installations in the country.

The Griffith Observatory

There is something truly magical about staring up at the clear skies using professional telescopes which is exactly what the Griffith Observatory offers. This Los Angeles museum uses space and nature itself as an actual art installation for a truly unforgettable experience. The best part is that you get to enjoy The Griffith Observatory for free.

Petersen Automotive Museum

Los Angeles has always stood as one of the national beacons for automotive technology and there is no better place for gearheads to appreciate this than the Petersen Automotive Museum. This iconic LA museum has hundreds of exhibitions including memorabilia from industry-changing inventions and limited-edition releases.

The Peterson Automotive museum in LA, California is also a dream come true for film buffs. It is home to iconic cars like the Batmobile from Batman Returns and the DeLorean Time Machine from Back to the future.

Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA)

The Los Angeles County Museum of Art is a global phenomenon and hosts a collection of some of the greatest works of art from all around the world. This includes installations from art legends like Frida Kahlo and Claude Monet. 

This Los Angeles Museum itself is also a work of art and is awesome if you are interested in architecture.

Huntington Library, Art Collections & Botanical Gardens

This is so much more than just a museum and hosts a library, art galleries, and botanical gardens. It is the perfect place to visit as a family or if you want a bit of everything from nature to contemporary art. 

The Huntington is a fantastic place to visit if you want to see a lot of cool stuff and learn a lot about nature without the stifling touristy vibes you may get from other popular museums in Los Angeles.

Annenberg Space for Photography

The Annenberg Space for Photography is one of the few museums in the Los Angeles area that is dedicated entirely to photography art installations. It is also one of the latest additions to the vibrant art and museum scene in LA, California.

At Annenberg, you can expect some of the coolest photography exhibitions including journalistic masterpieces and modern photography techniques.

California Science Center

Museums in Los Angeles are about so much more than just art and history. The California Science Center is an example of this diversity with the museum being dedicated entirely to scientific exhibits. These include space-themed installations and ecosystem exhibits for you to learn from. The California Science Center is also definitely a hit for families with children at whatever age.

Bottom Line

Clearly, there is no shortage of fun things to see and learn from LA museums. All it takes is a little bit of imagination and a love for something new. Whether it’s contemporary pieces, technological advancements, or historically relevant objects, you will be able to find it in LA. But we totally get if you’re still a little lost, that’s why we started the search for you above. Enjoy!