Pacific Palisades' Family-Friendly Attractions: Fun for All Ages

Pacific Palisades' Family-Friendly Attractions: Fun for All Ages

  • O'Connor Estates

Acclaimed time and again for its serene natural beauty, upscale charm, and convenient coastal location in western L.A. County, it's no surprise that Pacific Palisades is a popular landing spot for some of Hollywood's biggest stars. And not just as a location to invest in property but a place to call home. Much of that allure is from the Palisade's unexpected treasure trove of family-friendly attractions.

In fact, beyond its credentials as a haven, Pacific Palisades is a community rich in activities that cater to the joys of family life, particularly for those families who enjoy the outdoors. Explore Pacific Palisades' family-friendly attractions, where there's something fun for all ages.

Will Rogers State Beach

17700 Pacific Coast Highway

What better spot to start our journey of Pacific Palisades family-friendly attractions than along the Pacific? Beaches, of course, are a destination where the whole family is sure to have a good time, and with a 3.5-mile beachfront, the Palisades features plenty of sandy spots for the entire family to enjoy. The community's most popular place to seek out sun and sand is Will Rogers State Beach.

Named for the beloved 1930s Vaudeville and Hollywood star, the beach extends for 1.75 miles from the Palisade's shared boundary with Santa Monica to the Bel Air Beach Club. There’s ample space for family beach time and activities like swimming, fishing, and beach volleyball. The beach's main entrance is at the intersection of the PCH and Temescal Canyon Road, where you'll find the northern terminus for the 22-mile Marvin Braude Bike Trail, aka "The Strand."

The beach is also home to the Sandy Day Kids Camp, a popular spring and summer beach camp for kids aged 4.5 to 14. Adults of a certain age will appreciate Will Rogers State Beach as a filming location for the 1950 movie "Creature from the Black Lagoon" and the hit 1990s T.V. show "Baywatch."

Will Rogers State Historic Park

1501 Will Rogers Park Road

Five miles and less than a 10-minute drive from his namesake beach is the Will Rogers State Historical Park. Set between The Alphabets and Riviera, perched high above the Palisades community on land donated by Will Rogers' widow after his death in 1935, the park is a stunning expanse of 359 acres. A wonderfully interactive experience, the park includes guided tours of Rogers' ranch house, a visitors center about Rogers' life and the property's history, hosts events such as movie nights, and offers access to numerous hiking trails, including a 2-mile loop to Inspiration Point.

A haven for equestrian lovers, the state historical park celebrates Rogers' lifelong connection with horses. In partnership with Jigsaw Farms, the park features riding lessons, guided trail rides, and opportunities at the riding and roping arena. Visitors are encouraged to bring their horses for single-day visits. The park's iconic polo field, designed by Rogers himself, is the only grass polo field in Los Angeles County and is home to the Will Rogers Polo Club.

The Getty Villa Museum

17985 Pacific Coast Highway

Among the most memorable and extraordinarily unique museums in L.A. County, the Getty Villa Museum is a showpiece estate explicitly built to showcase a one-of-a-kind art collection. Replicating a Roman county home of first-century origins, including exquisitely kept gardens, the villa houses a collection that spans 4,000 years of ancient art, from as early as the Stone Age to the fall of the Roman Empire. The collection includes nearly 45,000 pieces of antiquity.

A particular favorite of families with budding artists and art enthusiasts, tours include the museum's bespoke gardens, which feature sculptures, fountains, a reflecting pool, and plants native to ancient Rome. 

Temescal Gateway Park

15601 Sunset Boulevard

Situated in the heart of the Palisades, flanked by The Alphabets and Ridgeview Country Estates, is the 141 acres of Temescal Gateway Park. A favorite among outdoor enthusiasts, especially hikers and those immersed in the movements and machinations of nature, this Palisades gem is also great for families with kids of all ages. Highlights include stunning scenic views, wooded canyons, a bridge with a waterfall view, and breathtaking panoramas.

Living up to its name, Temescal is a genuine gateway park that places Palisade residents at the threshold of some of Southern California's most majestic landscapes. The park connects to Will Rogers State Historic Park. Trails such as Sunset and Temescal Canyon traverse the foothills of the Santa Monica Mountains, tying into more than 40 miles of additional trails as well as the 11,525-acre Topanga State Park, which itself is a gateway into the "Big Wild," a 20,000-acre urban wilderness park.

Palisades Farmers Market

1035 Swarthmore Avenue in the Palisades Village

Despite its urban sprawl, industrial might, and proclivity for the glitz and glamour of Hollywood, L.A. County was first and foremost a farming community. While that agricultural footprint is nowhere near as large as it once was (at one point, the nation's largest agricultural county), it remains a vital part of the region. Nowhere is this more evident than in L.A.'s numerous farmers markets. One of the best is right here in Pacific Palisades.

Located near the intersection of Swarthmore Avenue and Sunset Boulevard, at the northern end of Palisades Village, the Pacific Palisades Farmers Market is held every Sunday from 8:00 AM to 1:00 PM. Hosting many of the region's top farms, food suppliers, artists, and specialty vendors, the market is an excellent opportunity for families to venture out together and shop for the week's freshest fruits and vegetables. There's also a large section dedicated to fresh and healthy prepared foods.

Pacific Palisades July 4th Celebration

All activities occur in and around the Palisades Village

What is arguably the community's biggest and most popular annual event, the Pacific Palisades July 4th Celebration is a chance for the entire family to come out on what is always a picture-perfect day to celebrate the nation's birthday. Having celebrated its 75th "Diamond Jubilee in 2023," the 76th version will prove no less spectacular, including the parade, fireworks, live music, the Will Rogers 5K & 10K Run and a kids fun run, and contests that include a Kids on Bikes portion of the parade, Patriotic Pups, and the Most Patriotic Home.

The parade itself follows a 1-mile route through the heart of the Palisades Village along Sunset Boulevard. Such is the event's popularity that many of the Palisade's most famous residents bring their own families out for the day. Past parade Grand Marshals have included celebrity chef Giada De Laurentiis, former NBA coach and Palisades native Steve Kerr, Janice and Billy Crystal, and actors Anthony Hopkins, Jennifer Garner, and Denise Crosby.

Palisades Recreation Center and George Wolfberg Park at Potrero Canyon

851 Alma Real Drive

Finally, for all-around active families seeking indoor and outdoor engagement, there are few better combinations than the Palisades Recreation Center and George Wolfberg Park at Potrero Canyon. Tucked in between the Village Bluffs and Huntington Palisades neighborhoods, the Palisades Recreation Center has been a favorite destination for both young and old with expansive facilities that include lighted baseball and softball diamonds, indoor and outdoor basketball courts, a playground, an indoor gym, eight lighted tennis courts, and year-round sports and wellness programs.

Immediately south of the recreation center is the newest Pacific Palisades family-friendly attraction, the 46-acre George Wolfberg Park at Potrero Canyon. Opened for visitors in December 2022, the mile-long park meanders southward from the rec center to the PCH and includes a serene meadow and native garden in the park's upper section and a wide nature trail with overlooks. There are plans to soon connect the park to Will Rogers State Beach via a pedestrian bridge over the PCH. 

Start your Pacific Palisades journey today

If you're interested in discovering even more about the lifestyle in this highly desirable area, including Pacific Palisades luxury homes, contact the O'Connor Estates team today to start your real estate journey and uncover your perfect home in one of Southern California's most celebrated and sought-after luxury real estate markets.

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