When Lewie was little the days seemed infinite. No beginning, no end, just a circular continuum of feedings and naps and diaper changes. Having someplace to go gave an anchor to my day, however finding a place to go with a infant was surprising hard. I spent a lot of time googling and exploring options–there are so many amazing museums and parks for tots and older kiddos, but for babies under two, I found outings too difficult or boring until I discovered the many beautiful gardens around Los Angeles.
Gardens are beautiful, relaxing, plus most gardens also have cafes, so you can drink HOT coffee that someone else made for you. It’s basically heaven. Plus Lewie adored being outside, especially as an infant. He would instantly calm down when outside. (Is this universal?) But if your baby does start wailing, you’re outside, so no one really cares. And of all the gardens in LA, I think my absolute favorite is the the Los Angeles County Arboretum & Botanical Garden.
It’s huge, with 127 acres, but it never feels crowded. I think because it very far east (Arcadia) it doesn’t draw crowds. Actually most people have never even heard of it. But I promise it’s worth the drive. I’m lucky enough to leave less than 20 minutes from this garden, so I always try to go on the free day, which is the 3rd Tuesday of every month. There is an adorable cafe, roaming peacocks, a lake, and endless benches to sit and relax. Plus, there are some beautiful historic buildings on the property, like Queen Anne’s Cottage, hiding behind the palm tree above. And with so many acres, every time I go, I discover something new.
If you live in Los Angeles and haven’t visited, I highly recommend checking it out. Admission is $9 for adults and Kids under 5 are free. FREE DAY is 3rd Tuesday of the month.
Do you have a favorite place to go with little ones? Please share! I’m always looking for new ideas.