Fun fact: Griffith Park is over 5 times bigger than NY’s Central Park. With hikes, zoos, museums, beer (!), trains, playgrounds, ponies, golf, a carousel and lots more (all costing very little or nothing at all) it’s time to click through the slideshow and discover a baker’s dozen of the coolest places you just might not have visited in our gigantic urban forest.

The Zoo Without Animals

Before the LA Zoo opened in its current location (also in Griffith Park) in 1966, it was located just 2 miles down the road. The Old Zoo was opened in 1912, but due to inadequate space and poor design, it was never a good home for the animals. When it finally relocated, the cages and enclosures were abandoned. Now this hiking and picnic area is a super little tucked away space for imaginative play, birthday parties and exploring. Bring a blanket and spend the day monkeying around!

Bonus: In the summer months, the Independent Shakespeare Company of Los Angeles puts on free productions here. Some shows open with a concert or dance performance, and you can picnic, enjoy the pre-show and then stay for at least a little Shakespeare—a wonderful (free!) way to expose even the youngest kids to the Bard.

Find It: 4730 Crystal Springs Dr.
Learn More: yelp.com/biz/the-old-zoo-los-angeles-2

photo: Tiff T. via Yelp

What’s your favorite thing to do in Griffith Park?  We want to know!  Meet you in the comment section…

—Meghan Rose