Inside a third-floor room of UCLA’s Geology Building, you’ll find a display of more than 100 meteorites.
If you’ve ever wanted to gaze upon an item that arrived on Earth after a journey through outer space, then you’ll be happy to learn that within the boundaries of Los Angeles, there’s a place to see a whole collection of artifacts of other-worldly wonder.
This amazing spot is the UCLA Meteorite Gallery. Although it’s a relatively small room on the UCLA campus, it’s where the geology department has hundreds of meteorites on display.
The UCLA Meteorite Gallery is on the third floor of the university’s Geology Building. Just take the elevator up and walk across the hall to room 3697.
Outside the Pacific Design Center in West Hollywood, you’ll find the second largest chair in Los Angeles.
The Battle of the Giant Chairs
Before the L.A. Mart brought a large oak chair from Chicago and set it up in the Reef parking lot in South Central Los Angeles, this gleaming silver seat in front of the Pacific Design Center (PDC) was the largest chair in the city. Now it’s the second largest.
In Downtown Los Angeles you can visit a huge warehouse space filled with almost endless varieties of candy.
We’re All Kids in This Candy Store
If you like candy (and, really, who doesn’t?), do yourself a favor and pay a visit to Jack’s Candy, a giant candy warehouse filled with all the delectable delights you remember from your youth plus many varieties of sweets you may have never heard of.
In Duarte you’ll find an impressive collection of vintage race cars, motorcycles, experimental automobiles, and racing memorabilia. And you can visit all this for free.
Justice Brothers: A Legacy of Racing
The Justice Brothers were a trio of mechanically inclined brothers — Ed, Zeke, and Gus — from Paola, Kansas. They worked as mechanics in their hometown and built their first race car when they were teenagers.
Ed answered the siren call of the Southern California racing scene and drove west on Route 66. He convinced Zeke to make the trip (Gus has been paralyzed from an auto accident and stayed behind) to California where they worked in race car fabrication.
In Downtown Los Angeles you can take a ride on the world’s shortest railway that’s been operating (or not) for more than 100 years.
The Original Angel’s Flight
Angel’s Flight first opened as the Los Angeles Incline Railway in 1901. It carried passengers from Hill Street to Olive Street and ran adjacent to the 3rd Street Tunnel. When it opened it was the shortest railway in the world at just 315 feet.
In Westlake’s Lafayette Park, you can see a decaying statue of the man who helped secure America’s independence.
The Marquis de Lafayette
Gilbert de Motier, better known as the Marquis de Lafayette, was the son of a wealthy French landowner. When he learned about the American Revolution, he felt that the resistance of the colonists was a just and noble cause.
After serving as an officer in the French army (he attained his first rank at just 13 years old), he traveled to America to lend his aid to the revolutionaries. Upon arriving at the age of 19, he was awarded the title of general. He distinguished himself in a few battles before returning to France to drum up further support for the American cause.
And drum up he did. Along with the Comte de Rochambeau, Lafayette returned to the colonies in 1780 where he was named as a commander in the Continental Army. In this role he was instrumental in ensuring the victory at Yorktown and forcing the surrender of General Cornwallis. This defeat was a major factor in Britain’s decision to negotiate an end to the war.
In Venice Beach, you can find a giant steel sculpture on a hill between the boardwalk and the Pacific Ocean.
In May 2001, artist Mark di Suvero installed Declaration, a 60-foot-tall towering structure made from steel I-beams on a grassy hill between the Venice Ocean Front Walk and the Pacific Ocean, right where where Windward Avenue runs into the beach-front walkway.
In historic West Adams, inside a classic movie theatre, you can visit a 360-degree, hand-painted mural of Shenyang, China that hearkens back to a style of entertainment before the birth of film.
The Panorama — Entertainment of Yesteryear
Before the days of cinema, escape rooms, and virtual reality, people would flock to panoramas. These intricately painted displays offered fully immersive views of faraway places and fantastical settings. Panoramas were a major draw at the Louisiana Purchase Exposition (better known as the 1904 St. Louis World’s Fair).
Although the subject matter varied from panorama to panorama, the overall experience of each was quite similar. After walking down a dim hallway and climbing a narrow set of spiral steps, you’d emerge onto a viewing platform where a stunning 360° painting enhanced by a series of 3D faux-terrain sculptures would transport you to a different time and place.
Over the decades, the popularity of the panorama as entertainment and art waned, and today there’s only one place to enjoy the majesty of the panoramic art form in the United States. That’s the Velaslavasay Panorama, right here in Los Angeles.