Hollywood Hills

10 Free and Cheap Summer Camps Los Angeles Parents Should Know

Summer camp can be a great way to keep Los Angeles-area kids busy and even intellectually and creatively stimulated through those long summer months—but rarely is it cheap. Amazingly, we came up with a list of LA summer camps that won't destroy your budget, and some of them are even (gasp) FREE. There are great STEM camps, art camps, and outdoor, sports fun, too!

Check out these summer camps with your kids, tweens, and teens now, because even though summer fun seems far away, spots will fill up before you know it.

Find more options in our LA Summer Camp Guide, or browse our Camp Directory of listings by interest, age, and area.

27 Fun Things in Hollywood that Kids Love To Do

We say, "Hooray for Hollywood!" because it offers more than just glitz and glam, celebrity hangouts, expensive T-shirt shops, and infamous nightclubs. Believe it or not, Hollywood is also a go-to destination with kids in tow—from hiking to the Hollywood sign to watching Wonder Woman get her Walk of Fame star. Feeling skeptical? Have a look at our 27 favorite things to do in and around Tinsel Town. And if you've got out-of-town guests looking for Hollywood movie sightseeing, we've got that covered, too.

(Thinking bigger than just Hollywood? Check out out list of 101 Things To Do in LA with Kids!)

Hike to the Hollywood Sign: Kids Can Handle It!

It's one of the most iconic symbols of our city, but have you ever hiked to the Hollywood sign? Sure, you can't get close enough to touch it, but you can hike to the top of Mt. Lee, reaching a vantage point above and behind it, and enjoy one of the most amazing views of the Griffith Observatory, Downtown LA, and Hollywood. The most kid-friendly route follows the wide, graded Hollyridge Trail to a paved road (closed to cars) up Mt. Lee. Roughly 3.5 miles round trip, it is not too much for most kids; there are generally plenty of preschoolers out on the trail. The entire hike follows fire roads and paved road, so even a stroller can make this trip—if you don't mind pushing it up about 800 feet of elevation gain, and controlling it on the way back down.

Stars and Studios: 25 Ways To Celebrate Hollywood and Movies around LA

Visits from out-of-town friends and family featured prominently in my childhood; and while, sure, the guests were here to see us, their number one agenda item was generally to see “Hollywood,” – and I’m not talking about that boulevard that was so shabby and run down in the 70s. Our visitors were looking for a glimpse of the movie industry.

My mom was an expert tour guide, who knew where all of the movies stars lived and was only too happy to drive around the basin pointing out sights for the star struck. It’s been years since I’ve toured my home town in this way, but recently we had visitors from Europe whose number one wish list item was The Walk of Fame. (Kudos to the Hollywood Chamber of Commerce for making sure word about this iconic sidewalk made its way to Slovenia!) My feeling is that we should all channel Lucy and Ethel when we are showing off our glamorous town. Think about where those two dizzy dames would want to trespass, then find a legal way to show it to your guests.

SunnyDayScoot: Driving Tours of Griffith Park & Parties in Scooter Car s

I'm feeling pretty smug today. Not only did I take my kid on an outing in his hometown that thrilled him within an inch of his life; I also found an activity that was utterly and completely new to our LA team's native Angeleno, Jackie Stansbury. You may have noticed a recurring theme in Jackie's posts: unlike most LA parents I know, her childhood memories are actually all right here in the Southland. When she talks about a grunion run, she compares it to the one she did 40 years ago. In short, there's nothing new under the LA sun for her. That is, until today, when she and I were invited to do some scootering under the sun in funny little vehicles that feel like a cross between a bumper car and Colonel Klink's motorcycle. We took our kids on LA's newest road adventure: SunnyDayScoots.

5 Toddler-Friendly Hikes and Nature Walks In or Near Los Angeles

Don’t we all want to get away sometimes without having to really "get away"?  A thing called recall sets in and "eeek!" we remember how tough it is to simply pack the car for a normal school day. The thought of packing for a weekend vacation can be daunting and unappealing. How is that a get away? Although we live in a city of buildings and cars, just a short drive a way there is a way to feel as if you and the family are getting away from it all for a small but peaceful break. The list below includes a few hikes in and around Los Angeles equipped with trails, fossils, waterfalls, and ocean views.

Hikes with Kids: Lake Hollywood Perimeter Trail

There's a new hike in town! OK, maybe it's not completely new—but, for the first time since the winter storms of 2005, the entire Lake Hollywood perimeter trail is open. And, with the exception of the northern section (which is partly packed dirt sidewalk and partly concrete sidewalk along a fairly quiet road), the trail is paved and so wide it's more a street than a trail. That means more than three miles of car-free walking, running, or biking—with a touch of Los Angeles history and amazing views of the Hollywood sign thrown in.

(For more hike ideas, check out our family hiking guide!)

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