Just cross the Colorado Street Bridge to reach the city limits of Pasadena, and there you will see quaint bungalows on shaded streets, a main city hub that’s walkable and a small-town feel squeezed into a cosmopolitan city. This year, Pasadena celebrates 128 years and here’s a list of must-see family-friendly stops:
Norton Simon Museum has a wonderful outdoor sculpture garden that’s perfect to introduce little ones to the joys of art in a natural setting. Inside, the bronze Edgar Degas ballerina figures will also impress as will the Rembrandt paintings and etchings along with the Picasso various works. The museum offers a wide range of family and youth programs to better connect them to the wonderful world of art, artists and the culture they represent.
KidSpace Museum is located near the Rose Bowl and a wonderful little park. There’s so much to see at Kidspace – outdoor water play exhibits, a challenging set of two indoor climbing towers that take them up 40 feet and Bugsy Diner where kids will learn how insects eats through interactive activities like putting on a giant bug costume and “playing” with their food.
Take a walk in the Lower Arroyo Seco and you’ll escape in a cool and shady trail alongside the Arroyo. While some areas are concreted over and is fenced in, there are parts of the stream that retains its natural soft bottom. The calming trees with flickering of birds overhead and the occasional bunny on the trail is a simple stroll that will alleviate any stress. On Saturday mornings, the Pasadena Roving Archers offer free archery classes for kids aged 10 and older. Get there early because the lines can be long.
- Lace up your skates at The Pasadena Ice Skating Center and see if you and your little ones can swirl and flow with the crowd. Public skating sessions are held daily. Bonus: the Paseo Colorado Shopping Center is right across the street which offers numerous shops, dining options and even a water play feature.
- Lunch at The Luggage Room means a trip to Pasadena’s Del Mar Train Station and pizza! Dictate your pizza from traditional toppings (tomatoes, mushrooms, sausage and pepperoni) or try something adventurous (artichoke, goat cheese, broccolini, artisan Italian sausage). All pizzas come with a gluten-free crust that are made on the premises daily. Save room for the gelato which comes in vanilla, orange, pistachio and mint chocolate chip.