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Griffith Observatory – tickets, prices, exhibits

Edited by: Rekha Rajan
Fact checked by: Jamshed V Rajan

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Introduction

The Griffith Observatory is in Griffith Park, a large urban park in Los Angeles, California.

It is a public observatory that offers breathtaking views of the city and the stars above. 

The observatory was named after its founders, Debra Griffith and Harold Griffith, who donated the land and funds for its construction.

Also known as the Griffith Park Observatory, this attraction was designed by architect John C. Austin and completed in 1935. 

The building is a work of art, with Art Deco and Beaux-Arts style architecture. 

The observatory is made of concrete, steel, and copper and features a central rotunda with a copper dome. 

The rotunda houses a Foucault pendulum, which demonstrates the rotation of the Earth.

This article shares everything you should know before booking Griffith Observatory Los Angeles tickets.

Griffith Observatory

What to expect at the Griffith Observatory

At the Griffith Observatory in Los Angeles, you can expect to see a variety of exhibits that showcase the wonders of astronomy and space exploration. 

Here are some of the highlights:

Samuel Oschin Planetarium

One of the main attractions of the Griffith Observatory is its planetarium. 

The Samuel Oschin Planetarium has a 290-seat theater that offers a variety of shows about astronomy and space exploration. 

The planetarium also features a state-of-the-art Zeiss star projector that accurately simulates the night sky.

Telescopes

The Griffith Park Observatory has several telescopes that visitors can use to observe celestial objects such as stars, planets, and the moon.

Some telescopes are located outside on the lawn, while others are inside the building.

Exhibits

Numerous exhibits throughout the Griffith Observatory explore different aspects of space science. 

These exhibits cover the solar system, the universe’s history, and the latest astronomical discoveries.

Foucault Pendulum

The Griffith Observatory has a large pendulum that demonstrates the rotation of the Earth. 

As the pendulum swings, it knocks over a series of pins, showing how the Earth rotates beneath it.

Views

The Griffith Park Observatory is located on a hill overlooking the city of Los Angeles. 

On the grounds, you can enjoy stunning city views and the Hollywood sign from various vantage points.

The park also offers various activities, including hiking, picnicking, and horseback riding.

The Griffith Observatory has been featured in many movies and TV shows, including “Rebel Without a Cause,” “La La Land,” and “Transformers.” 

It has become a symbol of Los Angeles and is a must-see attraction for visitors to the city.

In conclusion, the Griffith Observatory is a fascinating and beautiful landmark that allows visitors to explore the wonders of the universe. 

With its planetarium, exhibits, and telescopes, it is a great place to learn about astronomy and space exploration. 

The stunning architecture and location in Griffith Park make it a popular destination for tourists and locals.

TicketCost
Griffith Observatory Guided TourUS $35
Griffith Observatory HikeUS $35
Private Tour of Griffith ObservatoryUS $349
Hollywood Sign Hiking Tour to Griffith ObservatoryUS $39
Getty Center & Griffith Observatory Guided TourUS $89

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Where to buy Griffith Observatory tickets

You can purchase your Griffith Observatory entry tickets at the attraction or online in advance.

If you land at the venue to buy tickets, you’ll have to line up at the ticket counter. 

These lines can get long during peak times, which might be frustrating.

Online tickets for the Griffith Park Observatory are cheaper than those sold at the venue. 

Online tickets also help you avoid last-minute disappointments when tickets get sold out.

How online ticket works

Go to the Griffith Observatory ticket booking page, select your preferred date and the number of tickets, and buy the tickets instantly.

After the purchase, you will receive the tickets in your email. 

You don’t need to take any printouts. 

Meet your guide at the provided meeting point, show them your smartphone ticket, and walk into the Griffith Observatory and Griffith Park right away.

Cost of the Griffith Observatory tickets

Basic admission to Griffith Observatory is free.

However, Griffith Observatory and Griffith Park guided tours and hikes cost start at US $35.

Tickets for Griffith Observatory 

You can choose between the following Griffith Observatory tickets according to your budget and convenience.

Griffith Observatory Guided Tour

Griffith Observatory Guided Tour
Image: GriffithObservatory.org

The Griffith Observatory guided tours cover the main features of the observatory.

These guided tours include the historical exhibits, the Samuel Oschin Planetarium, and the Leonard Nimoy Event Horizon Theater.

The guided tours are led by knowledgeable and enthusiastic docents who share their expertise on the observatory’s history, exhibits, and facilities.

However, this ticket does not include the Samuel Oschin Planetarium Tickets and can be purchased on-site.

This ticket requires at least two participants, and the tour lasts 90 minutes.

Ticket Cost: US $70 for a group of two.

Griffith Observatory Hike

Griffith Observatory Hike
Image: DailyBulletin.com

The Griffith Observatory Hike is a 3.6-mile hike up to the highest peak in Griffith Park with a Local CPR/First-Aid certified guide.

The hike starts at 10 am. You will meet the guide at The Greek Theatre Box Office in Griffith Park 15 minutes prior.

The hiking trails to the observatory are generally considered moderate in difficulty, with some steep sections and uneven terrain.

You will also get free parking near the Griffith Observatory with this ticket.

Get various photo opportunities along the trip, even with the Hollywood Sign.

Ticket Cost: US $35

Private Tour of Griffith Observatory

Private Tour of Griffith Observatory
Image: GetYourGuide.com

The Private Tour of Griffith Observatory is a three-hour walking tour covering Architecture and Science.

It starts in the central rotunda, and you’ll learn about inventor Nikola Tesla and his 50,000-volt Tesla Coil exhibit.

You will discover how the solar system works, see sunspots through a telescope, and learn about seismology and L.A. earthquakes standing next to an active seismograph.

At night, wait in line for the one-of-a-kind German-made Zeiss 12-inch telescope, providing an intimate look at planets and stars.

End the tour with one of the world’s best planetarium shows, using a state-of-the-art digital projection system and a Zeiss star projector.

Ticket Cost: US $349

Hollywood Sign Hiking Tour to Griffith Observatory

Hollywood Sign Hiking Tour to Griffith Observatory
Image: Viator.com

The Hollywood Sign Hiking Tour to Griffith Observatory is a guided tour that takes you on a scenic hike to the iconic Hollywood Sign and then to the Griffith Observatory.

The tour starts at Franklin’s Cafe and Market in Los Feliz, where you’ll meet your guide and fellow hikers.

From there, you’ll hike to the Greek Theater and Hollywood Sign, taking in stunning views of Los Angeles.

After reaching the Hollywood Sign, you’ll have the opportunity to take photos and soak in the incredible views before continuing to the Griffith Observatory.

Upon arriving at the Griffith Observatory, you’ll have time to explore the exhibits and learn about astronomy and space science.

This tour lasts for two hours.

Ticket Cost: US $78 for a group of two.

Getty Center & Griffith Observatory Guided Tour

Getty Center & Griffith Observatory Guided Tour
Image: TripAdvisor.in

The Getty Center & Griffith Observatory Guided Tour is a comprehensive tour that takes you to two of Los Angeles’ most popular cultural institutions.

The tour will start by boarding the bus in front of the Original Farmers Market clock tower at 6333 W 3rd St. 

Your guide will be wearing ExperienceFirst gear.

First, you get a visit to the Getty Center, a world-renowned art museum and cultural center in the Brentwood neighbourhood of Los Angeles. 

After the Getty Center, you’ll head to the Griffith Observatory, an iconic landmark in Griffith Park.

Throughout the tour, your guide will provide commentary and insights into Los Angeles’ rich history, culture, and arts scene.

The tour lasts around six hours and includes transportation to and from the Getty Center and Griffith Observatory.

Ticket Cost: US $89

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How to reach the Griffith Observatory in Los Angeles

The Griffith Observatory is located on the southern slope of Mount Hollywood in Griffith Park.

Address: 2800 East Observatory Road, Los Angeles, CA 90027, United States. Get Directions!

The Los Angeles Department of Transportation (LADOT) operates a daily DASH Observatory/Los Feliz public bus service.

It starts from the Vermont/Sunset Subway Station and takes you to the Griffith Observatory. 

DASH Observatory/Los Feliz service operates daily from 10 am to 10 pm.

By Car

The easiest way to reach the Griffith Park Observatory is by car, so turn on Google Maps on your smartphone and get started.

A limited car parking facility is available at the Griffith Observatory and Griffith Park.

However, there are several public parking garages located nearby that you can use.

Click here to check nearby car parking lots.

Griffith Observatory timings

The Griffith Observatory in Los Angeles opens at 12 pm and closes at 10 pm on weekdays (Tuesday to Friday).

On weekends (Saturday and Sunday), the Griffith Observatory opens early at 10 am.

The Observatory remains closed on Mondays.

How long does the Griffith Observatory tour take

The tour of Griffith Park Observatory takes around 90 minutes to explore.

However, the private tours of Griffith Observatory can range from one to three hours in length.

It depends on the level of customization and the areas of the Observatory that you wish to explore. 

Best time to visit the Griffith Observatory

The best time to visit the National Museum of Singapore is as soon as it opens at 12 noon on weekdays.

You will get ample time to stroll inside the museum, as it is usually less crowded in the morning.

The Griffith Observatory in Los Angeles is busiest on weekends and public holidays when locals and tourists have free time. 

Plan your visit on a weekday to avoid crowds.

FAQs about the Griffith Observatory

Here are some FAQs about the Griffith Observatory and Griffith Park:

What are the operating hours of the Griffith Observatory?

The Griffith Observatory is open from 12 pm to 10 pm on weekdays and from 10 am to 10 pm on weekends.

Is Griffith Observatory open every day?

No, the Griffith Observatory in Los Angeles remains closed on Mondays.

What is the admission fee for the Griffith Observatory?

Admission to the Griffith Observatory is free of charge. However, you can book guided tours and hikes at US $35.

What is the best way to get to the Griffith Observatory?

You can reach the Griffith Observatory by car or use the DASH Observatory/Los Feliz public bus service from the Vermont/Sunset Subway Station.

What is the location of Griffith Observatory?

The Griffith Observatory is situated on the south-facing slope of Mount Hollywood, offering stunning views of the surrounding cityscape of Los Angeles, California.

Are there any guided tours available at the Griffith Observatory?

Yes, the Griffith Observatory offers guided tours for groups of two or more visitors.

What are the parking options available at the Griffith Observatory?

A limited car parking lot is available at the Griffith Observatory but can fill up quickly on busy days.

Are there any restaurants or cafes at the Griffith Observatory?

Yes, there is a café located on the lower level of the Griffith Observatory that serves drinks and light snacks.

What is the age limit for planetarium shows at the Griffith Observatory?

There is no age limit for planetarium shows at the Griffith Observatory.

Can I bring my telescope to the Griffith Observatory?

Yes, visitors can bring their telescopes to the Griffith Observatory.

Is there a gift shop at the Griffith Observatory?

Yes, there is a gift shop located inside the Griffith Observatory that sells science-themed souvenirs and gifts.

Are there any restrictions on photography at the Griffith Observatory?

Photography is allowed inside the Griffith Observatory, but tripods and flash photography are prohibited.

Is the Griffith Observatory accessible for people with disabilities?

Yes, the Griffith Observatory is accessible for people with disabilities, with wheelchair ramps and elevators available.

Can I bring my own food and drinks to the Griffith Observatory?

Yes, visitors are allowed to bring their food and drinks to the Griffith Observatory.

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