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“Heaven for 54 year old science geek.”

California Science Center
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Private Half-Day Los Angeles City Tour
Ranked #6 of 577 things to do in Los Angeles
Certificate of Excellence
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Fee: No
Recommended length of visit: 2-3 hours
Owner description: Space Shuttle Endeavour on display in the California Science Center's Samuel Oschin Pavilion. Please reserve your passes online or by phone. Explore over 100 permanent interactive science exhibits spanning several galleries. Admission to permanent exhibit galleries is Free! (excludes IMAX and special paid exhibits) Visit Ecosystems -- a hands-on exhibit home to nearly 400 plant and animal species. Come discover amazing environments from the familiar to the fantastic, and find out how the physical and living worlds affect each other.
Reviewed February 22, 2013

First of all, this is a very interactive museum geared for kids and teenagers. There are lots of exhibits where they get to push buttons, pull levers and watch videos. Perfect for a school outing.

My main reason for visiting was to see Space Shuttle Endeavor. Wow! If you've never stood under a space shuttle before, this place is the cat's meow. Worth the price of admission (entrance to the science center is by suggested donation, Space Shuttle is a small fee).

Thank ScubadaveRockaway
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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2,251 - 2,255 of 3,189 reviews

Reviewed February 21, 2013

Brought my daughter and we LOVED the trip. Go outside and see the rose garden as it's lovely. Quick tip: don't have lunch there. So somewhere else afterwards.

Thank Sashu2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 19, 2013

The space shuttle Endeavor's new home is the centerpiece of the Science Center. The shuttle pivots in it's own structure. We walked under it. The Science Center has many other displays, some building on the space shuttle theme. There are even rides in space capsules for $5 pp. The other exhibits were interesting, ranging from ecology to a small aquarium with exotic fish and small sharks. Of course, there is a shop which our kids enjoyed!

Thank DrKatieRN
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 19, 2013

We went to the museum primarily to see the newly installed space shuttle Endeavor. It did not disappoint. The museum has free admission, but parking is $10. There was a great collection of splash down capsules from many different space missions. There are large exhibits detailing the different missions, showing the space suits and equipment, and explaining the history of the space program. The shuttle itself is very awe-inspiring. You are able to walk all the way around it and underneath it. The heat shields and heat absorbing tiles definitely show the wear from the many missions. Of course, there are many placards describing everything you see. There are several different simulators that allow you to feel like you are in the Endeavor or you can pick an adventure (6 available) and experience that trip. These simulators cost $3-$4 a piece.

We also enjoyed the Creative World exhibits. These focus on inventions and innovations. What was really nice is that so many of the exhibits are hands-on activities for the kids. Again, here there is an Earthquake simulator and a Hurricane simulator ($3-$4) and 2 free flight simulators. We also toured the Ecosystems exhibit and saw the diver's show. They describe the kelp forests off the CA coast, the marine life, and more. There is a machine that mimics the rise and ebb of the tides in the giant aquarium. The aquarium is actually open at the top so you can see this and watch the fish being fed.

There is an IMAX theatre connected to the museum, tickets are extra. What is really nice is that there are three different movies playing at different times so you can pick based on your interest. Currently playing are Hubble 3D, To The Arctic 3D, and Blue Planet. Movie tickets are extra, but there's a price break if you see more than 1. Be warned: if you buy your movie tickets ahead of time on-line, they are not refundable or exchangeable for a different movie or time.

Lastly, there's a McDonald's and a Rose Cafe located within the Science Center. Plenty of picnic tables outside as well as indoor seating. You can also tour the outdoor rose garden. All in all, it's a great place to visit and well worth a trip to LA if you are a local.

1  Thank Jill H
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 18, 2013

At this wonderful facility, you can see everything from a gigantic California sea kelp environment to the Space Shuttle Endeavor. Kids have a chance to get their hands on science in interesting ways, and they seem to just love it. We saw baby chicks pecking their way out of their shell, lifted a truck off the ground with one hand, made slime from two liquids, and all sorts of fun things. The knowledgeable staff is wonderful, and there are numerous stations where they will explain an experiment to you while you are performing it.

It is free to enter the center, but if you want to see the Endeavor, it is worthwhile to go on-line and make a reservation for a timed entrance. The cost is nominal ($2.00) but well worth it, as the lines can bunch up if a group has arrived at the same time as you. There are also a few paid activities you can select when you get there, such as a ride in a shuttle simulator, climbing a rock wall, experiencing a hurricane, etc.

There is also an IMAX theater playing three different movies that you can attend at an additional cost.

Great experience for all, highly recommended for families.

Thank otravezCA
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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