La Brea Tar Pits and Museum, Los Angeles

At the only active Ice Age excavation site in the world, La Brea Tar Pits and Museum, you can see ancient fossils that have been discovered below the museum itself, right in the heart of Los Angeles. Plants and animals, like dire wolves, mammoths, and saber-tooth cats, are on display. You can also witness paleontologists at work in the Fossil Lab. While the height of excavation at Rancho La Brea occurred in the early 20th century, scientists are still uncovering more fossils at this site, and the museum continues to grow and educate the public on its discoveries and methods. A visit to La Brea Tar Pits and Museum represents just the start of the adventure when you use our Los Angeles route planner to plot your vacation.
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La Brea Tar Pits and Museum Reviews
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TripAdvisor Traveler Rating
TripAdvisor Traveler Rating 4.0
2,700 reviews
Google
4.5
TripAdvisor
  • My family loved this place for about 5 minutes. They are 4 and 11 and had no interest I hope because they were tired. I myself have been here twice and think it’s historical significance is impressive...  more »
  • Finally drove up from San Diego to the tar pits and was not disappointed. We were amazed by the number of fossils. I would advise touring the museum before venturing out to see the tar pits and active...  more »
  • This is not too be missed , a real eyeopener .Take the time to visit the Museum and see the sights on offer - well worth checking out  more »
Google
  • The tar pits were cool to see. They were all well marked and easy to find. You walk around the park to see them all so it's a great outdoor activity to do with kids and family. The path is Wheelchair accessible as well. I gave a low star because of the price. You go to park and it's $12. So I parked and then walking up was told at the booth that the walking park is open like any other park and free. But the museum there is another $12. Then to see special exhibit video you pay again. I thought the triple charge was a bit much, especially for a small museum. But I found out if you walk around the park first then go to the museum a half hour before closing it's half price. Service was great, people were helpful and friendly. I'm still happy that I went to see it.
  • Such a great place! So much still going on... In the middle of the city no less! If you haven't been, you really must check it out. They have found so many incredible fossils from the ice age... Hard to believe all the things that used to live here. I recommend having about 3 hours or so. If you want to make a day of it, consider visiting the modern art museum right next door.
  • This whole family of museums is amazing. I don't know what else to say. The excavator tour and the fossils are amazing. A whole wall of dire wolf skulls? Yeah, they have that. Also great tour guides, super soft shirts in the gift shop, and a cool exhibit where you can see how hard it would be to pull yourself out of tar. You have no idea how big mammoths were until you stand under one's tusks. Awesome!
  • This is a place I remember from my childhood. I hadn't been here for 30 years. It is all grown up with a beautiful lab, amazing volunteers that tell great stories, but still with the same awesome stuff that I remember except with much higher sturdier fencing. The classic mammoths sculpture stuck in the actual bubbling tar pit right off Wilshire was just as I remembered it. The actual tar pits were so cool I could have just sat there for days looking at them. The sculptures inside were just as cool! The indoor and outdoor labs were awesome. The guy giving the talk about some of the bones they had just dug out of the reclamation project made the science fun for all. Overall a really fun place for science geeks and just regular people. Lots of area to play outside. Lots of pits to look at. Totally safe because all the tar is behind fences and walls. This would be a great place to picnic and bring the whole family.
  • Great place to take the kiddos. Very clean park and museum. The entrance fee is good for the history and knowledge you as a person get to experience the gift shop as you may expect is pricy. The carton water is cute and unique, the green screen within the museum is a great gift to take home. Live fossil action going on in hours of operation. No homeless around which it was a plus. Many Tar sites through out park. I highly recommend to bring the family.

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