Best Indoor Play Spaces in LA: Playgrounds for Cold, Rainy Days
It never rains in LA—except when it does, and you need an indoor playground stat. And have you ever tried planning a birthday party outdoors in January? Sure, you might have one of those gorgeous days Manhattan moms covet, or you might end up wishing you'd booked a play space. Rainy days, birthdays, hot days, cold days—they all add up to needing to know where the indoor playgrounds are in LA and Orange County.
Note that many indoor playgrounds are open only for birthday parties on the weekends, not for drop-ins, so call before heading out. Several of the locations below also offer classes.
Noah's Ark at the Skirball is a definite must-do. Photo by Steve Cohn courtesy of Skirball Cultural Center
Westside Indoor Play Spaces
Manhattan's popular playspace has a branch in Brentwood, with contained entertainment for little ones up to age 5 or 6 and a full range of programs. Kidville also offers classes and birthday parties. Open playtime is limited; check the website for hours.
2. Noah's Ark at the Skirball
Actually an exhibit at the Skirball Cultural Center, Noah's Ark functions as a playspace. Climbing structures are designed from re-purposed materials, and recycled crafts and storytelling go on all day. Admission is timed and restricted to two hours; advance ticket purchase is recommended on weekends and Thursdays (which are free days!). Note Noah's Ark does not do birthday parties.
3. Pamper & Play
Westside moms can choose between playing with their toddling little ones in the play area or taking advantage of supervised play as they sit upstairs and get some work done with the free Wifi. Either way, it's win-win.
4. Under the Sea
Under the Sea in West LA seems to be the last remaining location of this playspace chain; the space offers plenty of room for kids to run and romp on a rainy day, with tables where Mom can make use of the free WiFi.
5. Cayton Children's Museum (formerly the Zimmer Museum)
The new Cayton is bigger and more educational than ever before and located in the Santa Monica Place Mall. There's a lot to keep kids busy indoors, from the youngest up to ages 9 or 10.
6. Big and Tiny Playworking Space
If you REALLY need a space to get those emails done or work on a spreadsheet for work, and you have your little ones who need to run off some steam, check out this "playworking" space. There's an area for kids to play AND an area for adults to work. Locations in Santa Monica and Silverlake.
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Kids love the train table at The Awesome Playground. Photo courtesy of venue
Indoor Play Spaces in Hollywood, Silver Lake, Eagle Rock, DTLA
7. The Awesome Playground
Hugging the edges of Eagle Rock, this playspace has giant inflatables, playing areas outside and in, a track for ride-on toys, and a separate baby area.
8. Peekaboo Playland
An Art Deco building in the heart of Eagle Rock houses Peekaboo Playland's inflatables, ball pit, climbing structures, slides, train table, and play houses.
10. Kiddie City
Leimert Park's family owned playspace is like a home away from home, with room to play with creative toys for little ones, and coffee plus free parking and WiFi for parents.
Everything feels possible at Kidspace. Photo courtesy of venue
Indoor Play Spaces in The Valleys
11. Play Lab
This indoor place space caters to infants and younger children. Its clean, streamlined design is 2200 square feet of space, with cozy lounge areas, reading nooks, and a cafe.
12. My Lil' Town
Granada Hills' newest play hub offers an imaginative play area in the form of a small town—one with plenty of climbing structures and frequent impromptu dance parties.
13. Amy's Playground
Amy's in Pasadena features a giant maze, playhouse, bouncer, and a separate "funspace" for small children.
14. The Coop
The Coop offers a very modern play area, complete with ball pit, slides, a dance pad, and race tracks for kids, plus free WiFi and a cappuccino bar for the rest of us.
15. Giggles 'n' Hugs
Giggles 'n' Hugs offers everything in one place: indoor fun for kids up to age 8 or so with easy parental sight lines; healthy, organic food; a Wii to keep older siblings happy; childcare for parents who want to shop the mall, and periodic entertainment including musicians, magicians, and games. How did we survive before Giggles 'n' Hugs?
16. The Jump Around
The Valley's largest inflatable playground features bounce houses, obstacle courses, a boxing ring, a castle and slides.
Much more than a playspace, Pasadena's kiddie Mecca has more stuff going on than the average kid can do in a day. Not a place for parents to chill, but oodles of indoor (and outdoor) fun abound.
18. The Playroom
Kids at the Playroom get to enjoy a bounce house, mini roller coaster, air hockey table, rock wall, ride on toys, and a ball pit.
19. Maddie's Playhouse
Let the kids go wild in 4,000 square feet of inflatable fun in Northridge.
Photo courtesy of We Rock The Spectrum Kids Gym
20. We Rock the Spectrum Kids Gym
With several locations in Southern California, this unique gym caters to kids across the spectrum -- including kids with special needs. This fun playground also helps kids with strength, movement, sensory processing, communication, and more.
21. Pump It Up
This Van Nuys (and Torrance) funhouse is chock full of inflatables -- and though open play hours are limited, kids won't need all day to get worn out.
22. Kidz Korner
A cozy indoor playground with special seating for parents -- and a small-scale area for toddlers -- Kidz Korner brings some family-friendly space to Encino.
23. The Treehouse
With a ball pit and lots of hidden features, this Tarzana playground has plenty to keep little ones amused. Mommy and Me classes are also available.
24. Kids World
This Simi Valley play space is tons of fun with a gated toddler area, ball city, arcade, basketball, and laser tag for the older kids.
25. Adam's Garden
Sherman Oaks Galleria is a hot spot for a new generation at Adam's Garden, where parents appreciate the organic cleaning products used on the 4000-ball pit, and the free organic coffee.
26. Kidz Planet
Open for playtime on weekdays only, this La Cañada indoor playground has a variety of imaginative toys, healthy snacks, and free WiFi for Mom and Dad.
Jump 'n Jammin has a foam ball volcano! Photo courtesy of venue
South Bay and Orange County Play Spaces
27. Adventure Plex
The scale is super-size at this Manhattan Beach play emporium, with enormous climbing structures, a fitness area, reading nook, and a cafe inside - plus plenty of outdoor activities, too.
28. Jump 'n Jammin
Entertainment includes multi-level play structures, giant slides, obstacle courses, an exploding foam ball volcano, and rock climbing.
29. Seascape Kids Fun
This three story play arena in Anaheim offers huge slides, an obstacle course, and foam shooting ranges all with a bubbly ocean theme.
30. Pretend City
Pretend City is just what the name implies: an entire miniature city set up for imaginative play. Be prepared, though, that everyone over the age of 12 months pays admission - including adults.
31. Scooter's Jungle
Scooter's Jungle has locations in El Segundo, Valencia, Placentia, and Simi Valley, where kids can romp on huge inflatable jumpers and slides.
32. Twinkle Twinkle
This kid-friendly restaurant and indoor playground in Lomita is a great getaway for kids up to age 7 or so.
33. Silly Goose
Little ones can climb and color (and stay dry) at this Lomita playground.
34. Circus Trix (aka Defy Air Sports)
This extreme sports gym skews a bit older than some of the places on our list, with its many ways to jump, swing, and plunge, but there is also an early morning jump session just for little ones.
35. Billy Beez
Wild slides, tunnels, and swings -- kids will definitely burn off any extra energy at this Anaheim playground (there's another location in Valencia, too).