You've seen the tabloid photos of celebrity moms and dads toting their tots all over Los Angeles, their offsprings' small faces beaming with delight at all the kid-friendly activities the star-filled city has to offer. Now it's your children's turn. Here's where to take them for an L.A. vacation that will leave them with lifelong memories:
2. Leo Cabrillo. Take your kids tide-pooling at this state park in Malibu (www.parks.ca.gov); during low tide, they're sure to delight in seeing all those anemones, urchins, mussels, hermit crabs, and fishes in their natural habitat. Just make sure that they leave everything exactly where it was. Afterward, head to Malibu County Mart for a romp in the playground (for them) and a nice cup of coffee (for you).
3. The Huntington Library, Art Collections, and Botanical Gardens is a wonderland of botanical experiences. Kids love seeing the exotic Desert Garden, the dainty Japanese Garden, the idyllic Shakespeare Garden, and of course, the made-for-them (and relatively new) Children's Garden.
4. Santa Monica. The pier (www.pacpark.com) has a Ferris wheel, an arcade, a roller coaster, a carousel, and the requisite corn dogs and cotton candy. Need we say more? If it's a Sunday, start your day at the farmer's market (www.smgov.net/farmers_market/sunday.htm), where little ones get their faces painted, ride ponies, and are entertained by clowns.
5. Griffith Park. America's biggest municipal park with urban wilderness area is home to the fascinating Griffith Observatory (www.griffithobs.org), where kids learn all about astronomy, Travel Town (www.traveltown.org), which has of trains to climb on, and the unforgettable Los Angeles Zoo (www.lazoo.org).
6. The Getty, a world-class art institution, is surprisingly family-friendly. Its Family Room offers hands-on art activities, while the Art Detective Cards give kids mysteries to solve while exploring the museum and its stunning grounds. Kids can also experience storytelling programs, garden concerts, and the Children's Bookstore. At the Cafe, treat them to pizza, grilled cheese, or a peanut butter-and-jelly sandwich.
7. Chinatown. Your kids will feel as though they got transported to China when you take them to this district packed with ethnic restaurant, stores, and experiences. More details at www.chinatownla.com
8. Medieval Times Dinner & Tournament, in celebration of its 25th anniversary and the launch of its first new production in five years, is offering a promotion wherein kids 18 and under get in free when accompanied by one full-paying adult -- a savings of $35 per child -- through July 6. North America's most popular dinner attraction, near Knott's Berry Farm in Buena Park, features "knights" jousting, sword fighting, and displaying equestrian and falconry skills. Visit the websites to find out when the live performances happen, and to buy tickets: www.medievaltimes.com.
Talk to other Frommers.com readers on our California Message Boards.