The Griffith Observatory, a gigantic spaceship-like structure with eyes on the stars above and the palm-fringed boulevards below, floats over Los Angeles. One of the city’s most recognizable landmarks, this art deco behemoth has been featured in both movies and television shows. Amazing planetarium performances, interacting displays, and gorgeous murals add to the experience beyond the building’s aesthetic value.
The Observatory, built-in 1935 on the southern slopes of Mt. Hollywood, provides a view of the universe. Its Planetarium boasts the most technologically advanced star projector in the world, and its astronomical touch screens dive into a wide range of fascinating topics, from the development of the telescope to the mapping of the solar system and beyond using ultraviolet and x-ray light.
Located on the southern slope of Mount Hollywood, Griffith Observatory provides sweeping views of the greater Los Angeles area. Many people praise the spot for the stunning views it provides of the surrounding area.
However, this is more than simply a picturesque backdrop. The Observatory offers an excellent planetarium and interesting exhibits. Recent visitors praised Griffith Observatory’s scenic location as its primary selling point. There is also a café and gift shop here.
Griffith Park is a great area to spend time outside (and avoid the crowds at the beaches). The park spans over 4,200 acres and has several amenities, such as soccer fields, equestrian paths, and more. The Los Angeles Zoo and Botanical Gardens, the Hollywood Sign, the Autry Museum of the American West, and the Griffith Observatory may all be found in this area.
Visitors in the past appreciated the park’s scenery, particularly the walks leading up to the Hollywood sign. While the park as a whole is free to visit, several of its features (such as sports courts and museums) may need separate payments. There are a few free parking spots scattered around the premises.
The Griffith Observatory provides panoramic views of the Los Angeles Basin, the surrounding mountains, and the Pacific Ocean on clear days. The rooftop observation deck provides a panoramic view of the downtown area, the Hollywood Hills, and even the city’s most recognizable landmark.
On a clear day, you can watch the sunset over the glittering city below and enjoy fantastic stargazing. If you simply want to see the Observatory throughout the day, you may park more easily on weekdays before noon, when it opens.
The History of Griffith Observatory
Since its inception in 1935, more than 7 million visitors have viewed the night sky via the Observatory’s 12-inch Zeiss refractor telescope.
The City of Los Angeles received a donation of 3,015 acres (12.20 km2) in 1896 with the purpose of constructing an observatory, exhibit hall, and Planetarium on the site. The contribution was given by businessman and philanthropist Griffith J. Griffiths with the goal of bringing astronomy to the public.
In 1935, the Observatory and its associated displays opened to the public as the third Planetarium in the United States. The building’s art deco facade features a Greek key design, a nod to the building’s dual Greek and Beaux-Arts roots.
Pilots were taught celestial navigation skills at the Planetarium during World War II. In the 1960s, while the Apollo program was preparing its first lunar flights, the Planetarium was employed for this purpose once more.
A subterranean addition and brand new displays, including the Leonard Nimoy Event Horizon Theater, were added to the Observatory in 2006.
Samuel Oschin Planetarium in Griffith Observatory
Visit the Planetarium and sit back while the lasers are projected onto the aluminum dome ceiling to show you a tour of the universe or the quest for water and life beyond Earth. This Planetarium is right up there among the best of them. The digital projection technology and cutting-edge Zeiss star projector combine to create breathtakingly lifelike performances.
There are three to choose from: “Centered in the Universe,” which transports guests to the time immediately following the Big Bang; “Water is Life,” which sends guests on a quest to locate water in the solar system; and “Light of the Valkyries,” which looks into the mystery of the Northern Lights.
There are three performances available every day at various times. If you are dead keen on watching a certain film, you should check the website for show hours. It should be noted that the first showing of the day is the only one that allows children under the age of five.
Zeiss Telescope at Griffith Observatory
Over seven million visitors have looked through the original 12-inch Zeiss refracting telescope at Griffith Observatory. A glass lens with a diameter of 12 inches is mounted at the front of the telescope’s 16-foot-long tube to gather and concentrate light. Two separate views of the same object are possible thanks to a smaller 9-inch refracting telescope that rides piggyback on the main telescope tube.
The 1935 telescope, protected by a modern copper dome, is in perfect working order. In addition to the dome renovations, Griffith Observatory has installed a new display station in the Hall of the Eye exhibit hall that streams live video and audio from the telescope for guests who are unable to make the ascent.
Every clear night the Observatory is open; anybody may come and look at the stars for free. During times of significant astronomical occurrences, it may become very crowded and joyful. Most evenings, a knowledgeable guide will assist you in looking through the telescope’s eyepiece, and more telescopes will be brought out onto the lawn for your use.
- What is the address of Griffith Observatory?
2800 E Observatory Rd, LA, CA 90027.
- What are the opening hours of Griffith Observatory?
The Griffith Observatory is open from 12 PM to 10 PM on weekdays and 10 AM to 10 PM on weekends. This place is closed on Mondays.
- How to get to Griffith Observatory?
Of course, you can drive there, but parking on the weekends may be a nightmare. To get to the Griffith Park Observatory, you may take the DASH Observatory shuttle bus from the Vermont/Sunset metro stop on the Red Line. Another fantastic alternative is to trek up from the Los Feliz neighborhood below.