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Museums in Los Angeles

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United States
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Autry Museum of the American West
Gone are the glory days of the Wild West, but you can still get in on the action at the Autry Museum of the American West. Just across from the entrance to the L.A. Zoo in Griffith Park, you’ll find this 3,345 sqm complex with over 500,000 works of art and artifacts from the American frontier. Co-founded by musical western star Gene Autry in 1988, it’s natural that the museum would dedicate space to cool Western film memorabilia, from the pistols used by Steve McQueen to costumes from 2005’s Brokeback Mountain. There’s even a replica movie set of an Old Western town with storefronts. (Little-known fact: The first-ever feature-length movie filmed in Hollywood was a Western—the 1914 silent film The Squaw Man, directed by Cecil B. DeMille. The camera used to film it is here, too.) A bronze statue of “the singing cowboy” Autry greets you at the entrance, but the museum covers much more than just Hollywood gunslingers—you’ll learn all about the real Old West, too. You’ll find engraved golden pistols given to Annie Oakley by her husband Frank Butler. There’s an extensive saddle display, a mail stage coach from 1855, Smith & Wesson revolvers, pioneer portraits, cowboy hats, buckskin jackets—even a saloon with a mahogany bar and roulette wheel.
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Griffith Observatory
Griffith Observatory is a Southern California’s gateway to the cosmos! Since opening in 1935, Griffith Observatory has been a world leader in public astronomy, an icon of Los Angeles, a beloved civic gathering place, and one of southern California’s most popular attractions. Visitors can look through a telescope, see a live show in the Samuel Oschin Planetarium, explore the exhibits, and enjoy the spectacular views of Los Angeles and the Hollywood Sign. In addition, its iconic façade has been featured in more than 300 films and television shows. The Observatory is a Los Angeles landmark and worldwide tourist destination for over a million visitors a year.
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Bradbury Building
The Bradbury Building is the oldest commercial building remaining in the central city and one of Los Angeles’ unique treasures and make this one of downtown's most photographed icons. Built in 1893, this building’s light-filled Victorian count rises 50 feet with open-cage elevators, marble stairs and ornate iron railings. In the true spirit of Los Angeles, it has been featured in many movies, from DOA to Blade Runner.
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Van Nuys Airport
Van Nuys Airport (VNY) has all the elements of a blockbuster film—action, adventure, war, world records, movie stars, mystery, and suspense. It’s the story of success, defeat, and reinvention—the ultimate "little engine that could" —and yet it can be considered one of the largest "hidden gems" in Los Angeles because there is so much to learn and experience—and much of it is free.
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Los Angeles County Museum of Art
Today LACMA is the largest art museum in the western United States, with a collection of over 135,000 objects that illuminate 6,000 years of art history from new and unexpected points of view. A museum of international stature as well as a vital cultural center for Southern California, LACMA shares its vast collection with the Greater Los Angeles County and beyond through exhibitions, public programs, and research facilities that attract over 1.5 million visitors annually, in addition to serving millions more through community partnerships, school outreach programs, and creative digital initiatives.
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Natural History Museum of Los Angeles County
At the Natural History Museum discover your world past and present. Encounter dinosaurs, experience nature, explore our dioramas, marvel at one of the most impressive gem and mineral collections in the world, and learn how L.A. went from tiny pueblo to sprawling metropolis in our Becoming Los Angeles exhibit. Seasonally, take stroll through our Butterfly and Spider Pavilions, or check out one of our upcoming special exhibitions.
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Grammy Museum at L.A. Live
Music is power. And at the GRAMMY Museum you can experience that power first-hand through four floors of exciting interactive exhibits in vibrant downtown Los Angeles. On the fourth floor our touch-screen Crossroads table allows you to explore over 160 genres of music. On the third floor, you can pretend you’re a rock star in our Roland Live corner. And on the second floor you’ll find our latest special exhibit, along with our Clive Davis Theater, where both Taylor Swift and Ringo Starr have performed, plus many others.
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The Dr. Willella Howe-Waffle House and Medical Museum
The House is listed on the National Register of Historic Places, as a California Historic Point of Interest, and as a landmark building on the City of Santa Ana's Historic Register.