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Petersen Automotive Museum

6060 Wilshire Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90036 (Central L.A.)
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As featured in 3 days in Los Angeles
Ranked #22 of 385 attractions in Los Angeles
Certificate of Excellence 2014
Type: Specialty Museums, History Museums, Museums
Fee: Yes
Recommended length of visit: 1-2 hours
Owner description: The Petersen Automotive Museum is dedicated to the exploration and presentation of the automobile and its impact on American life and culture using... more » Owner description: The Petersen Automotive Museum is dedicated to the exploration and presentation of the automobile and its impact on American life and culture using Los Angeles as the prime example. Encompassing more than 300,000 square feet, its exhibits and lifelike dioramas feature more than 150 rare and classic cars, trucks and motorcycles. Covering four floors, the facility features permanent exhibits on the first floor that trace the history of the automobile. Visitors are invited to walk through, not by, exhibits and dioramas and experience settings of early Los Angeles where the world’s first shopping district was designed. The second floor presents five rotating galleries with state-of-the-art displays of race cars, classic cars, vintage motorcycles, concept cars, celebrity and movie cars, and auto design and technology. The May Family Discovery Center is located on the third floor. Designed to spark interest in science by way of the automobile, the 6,500 square-foot, interactive "hands-on" learning center teaches children basic scientific principles by explaining the fundamental functions of a car. A spectacular all-glass penthouse conference center, Founder’s Lounge and kitchen, comprise the fourth floor, which is available for special events and functions. The Petersen Automotive Museum Foundation is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization, governed by a Board of Directors. « less
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379 reviews from our community

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English first
Cardiff, United Kingdom
Top Contributor
92 reviews 92 reviews
81 attraction reviews
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 30, 2014 NEW

Enjoyable lots to see if you like cars a bit pricey but well worth it, if your a car enthusiast! Lots if information and cars to view and see!

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Senior Contributor
30 reviews 30 reviews
16 attraction reviews
26 helpful votes 26 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 27, 2014 NEW

I thoroughly enjoyed my visit to the Petersen Automotive Museum. It was a little on the expensive side if you wanted to visit "The Vault," but this turned out to be well worth the money. The tour guide (Annie Octane?) was truly passionate about all things automotive, and the holdings in the museum's vault are really spectacular: the 1952 Ferrari... More

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Coventry, United Kingdom
Top Contributor
123 reviews 123 reviews
11 attraction reviews
70 helpful votes 70 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 25, 2014 NEW

I visited this museum on the spur of the moment because it is right across the street from the LA County Museum of Art. I did enjoy the museum but I felt it was a little expensive. I'm not particularly a car enthusiast but I appreciate good design and aesthetics and it was good to see how it evolved over... More

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Clearwater, Florida
Top Contributor
107 reviews 107 reviews
36 attraction reviews
72 helpful votes 72 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 24, 2014

Make sure you arrive in time to take a tour of The Vault! It is well worth the extra cost. You will be taken down into the underground storage facility of hundreds more cars and escorted through with a tour guide under the watchful eye of a security guard. The cars in the vault are very valuable and rare, lots... More

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los angeles
Senior Contributor
37 reviews 37 reviews
17 attraction reviews
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed July 22, 2014

I love cars and museums, but this place has always been a bit of a disappointment. Like the Paley Center (formerly the Museum of Radio and Television), I feel like they are just a location to have events. By all means though, attend an event there if you are invited... but you're probably better of finding a car show to... More

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Lexington, South Carolina
Senior Contributor
29 reviews 29 reviews
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 19, 2014

First, let me say, do the vault tour!!! You get to see 100+ (170 on the day we were there) and many of them have much history or uniqueness. Such as the round door Rolls Royce, insured at $25 million. The museum was very large and offered a wide selection of cars. I was worried it would be more hot... More

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Palm Beach Gardens, Florida
Senior Reviewer
9 reviews 9 reviews
3 attraction reviews
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 14, 2014

If you are into antique auto collections, this is one of the best, with a chance to visit the private vault where millions of dollars worth of the most pristine autos are housed. Worth the pay for the guided tour.......

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Fremont, California
Top Contributor
744 reviews 744 reviews
379 attraction reviews
702 helpful votes 702 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 14, 2014

This is a very good automobile museum to go to when in the LA area. I liked the exhibits that showed both the cars and life style at the time. I enjoyed the short film about driving so fast on the streets in Europe. The car collection was very good as well. We stayed about 2 1/2 hours. There are... More

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14 reviews 14 reviews
5 attraction reviews
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 13, 2014

We were looking for things to do near our hotel while my husband was in a conference and we found this gem. The Hot Wheels collection was awesome. My sons (9 and 12) loved every minute of it!

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Indianapolis, Indiana
Senior Contributor
34 reviews 34 reviews
10 attraction reviews
22 helpful votes 22 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed July 13, 2014

General admission will get you two floors of early model cars and classics. For the price, I thought it was a bit expensive but the museum was very good. There was an entire area with various Mustangs through the years and we would have loved to see more classic Chevy's.

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