Teens looking for a thrill, a scare, or a reprieve from today’s 24/7 online world, will find it and then some in Los Angeles. Here’s a look at 10 hidden gems for teens to explore and enjoy in LA.
Suit up and experience an exciting lineup of fully immersive virtual reality adventures at Dreamscape, located on the second floor of Westfield Century City. Step into virtual worlds and transform into the hero of your own VR experience. Much like a movie theater, visitors can choose from three rotating features - we dare you to try just one. Westfield features an array of tasty food (Shake Shack, Din Tai Fung, Eataly) and sweet treats (Cinnabon, Wushiland Boba), so once you return from the metaverse, IRL refreshments await.
2. Two Bit Circus
Hidden inside a nondescript building in the Downtown LA Arts District, the 38,000 square-foot Two Bit Circus (634 Mateo St, Los Angeles 90021) is known as the "World’s First Micro-Amusement Park." Two Bit Circus features numerous game zones, from classic coin-ops to the latest in immersive entertainment and multi-person virtual reality.
The Midway is a high-tech update of the classic boardwalk - you can pop balloons, race trains, and even demolish a building or two. Inside The Arena, VR experiences include Hologate and the four-player Hyperdeck, which features a tilting floor and real weather effects. Story Rooms are Two Bit's version of Escape Rooms - board The Raft with friends and defend the bayou against a supernatural horde; or test your surgical skills at Dr. Botcher’s Minute Medical School. The Box Car offers modern twists and vegan versions of classic carnival fare, made for guests to walk around the park.
3. IFly Indoor Skydiving
Experience the adrenaline rush of jumping from a plane at 12,000 feet for a fraction of the price at iFly Indoor Skydiving at Universal CityWalk (100 Universal City Plaza). Book individual or group flights, and prepare to fall in love with the feeling of floating on air. Discounts for booking multiple flights. Teens under 18 will need a parent/guardian waiver.
4. Trapeze Lessons at TSNY Los Angeles
Learn to flip and fly through the air with trapeze lessons at TSNY Los Angeles at the historic Santa Monica Pier (370 Santa Monica Pier). From individual classes to Intensive Flying Workshops, students ages 12+ just need a waiver from parents/guardians to enjoy the thrill (and fitness benefits) of learning to leap through the air. Classes available on both weekdays and weekends. You can share classes with friends and save 10% on purchases of 10 or more sessions.
5. Martial Arts History Museum
Learn about the role that the martial arts have played in the role of numerous Asian cultures, including China, Japan, Korea, Thailand, and the Philippines with a visit to the Martial Arts History Museum in Burbank (2319 W. Magnolia Blvd). Exhibits are designed by artists from the Walt Disney Company, DreamWorks, The Simpsons and more. Open Thursday-Sunday 11am-6pm.
The event calendar includes Martial Arts Celebrity Days, demos, movie screenings and more. The museum also hosts Dragonfest, a martial arts expo with action stars, vendor booths, workshops and cultural performances.
6. Maze Rooms
Teens ages 16 and over that want to experience the wonder of illusions, and the challenge of navigating through an escape room, will find locations throughout L.A. Maze Rooms Los Angeles features themed adventures ranging from "Lunar Mission" in Koreatown, to “Jack the Ripper” in Culver City, to “Pharaoh’s Tomb” in Hollywood. Special offers and discount codes are offered frequently by Maze Rooms on Instagram. Follow @mazerooms for the latest promos.
7. LA Conservancy Walking Tours
Learn about LA's history and architecture on a Los Angeles Conservancy Walking Tour. Taking place on Saturday mornings, the 2.5 hour tours are centered on themes such as Art Deco, Broadway Theatre District, Historic Downtown LA, Modern Skyline, Past Meets Present, and Union Station. Pricing is $15 for the general public, or $10 for Conservancy members and youth ages 17 and under. Group tours for 12 or more people are available.
8. Moonlight Rollerway
Since it originally opened as Harry’s Roller Rink in 1956, Moonlight Rollerway (5110 San Fernando Rd, Glendale 1204) has been a favorite for locals ready to lace up their skates. Most afternoon and evening sessions are all ages, while Monday nights are reserved for the 18+ crowd. Kids skate takes place on Saturday mornings. Cover charges vary, with skate rentals available at an additional cost, and advance tickets for some events are available.
9. Peace Awareness Labyrinth & Gardens
Discover a real-life labyrinth smack dab in the middle of Los Angeles and enjoy the feeling of unplugging from your phone at the Peace Awareness Labyrinth and Gardens (3500 W Adams Blvd, Los Angeles 90018). Learn how to walk the labyrinth, listen to the sounds of peaceful running water, take some time to relax, and recharge your internal batteries with an afternoon in this oasis. Open Wednesdays, Fridays and Sundays from 1pm-4pm.
10. Old Zoo
The LA Zoo as we know it today was not the city’s first zoo. The Griffith Park Zoo, which opened in 1912 and closed in 1966, is now a hiking trail and picnic area. Explore the Old Zoo (5400 Griffith Park Dr) and get up close and personal with iron-barred enclosures from a past era, and wander through lions’ dens, or bring a frisbee and enjoy a pickup game on the still beautiful grounds. Leashed dogs are welcome.