La Brea Tar Pits, Los Angeles
La Brea Tar Pits will take you an hour to walk through. It's an amazing cluster of tar pits in the middle of the sprawling metropolis. For thousands of years, buried asphalt seep to the surface from the petroleum deposits below the surface of the LA basin. You can see and hear it bubbling its way to the surface. Scientists have also discovered fossilized animals and plants from the glacial age. It is bewildering to realize that LA was once untouched wilderness animals roamed free.
Located in Miracle Mile district, near LACMA (Los Angeles County Museum of Art)
5801 Wilshire Blvd. near La Brea
Stree parking available on Wilshire
Tens of millenia ago, prehistoric North American animals became trapped in tar pits that are now in the center of Los Angeles. The La Brea pits have yielded some very important discoveries for paleontologists, and while they may not be as well known as some of the area's man-made attractions, they and the nearby museum are interesting to explore.
For some reason, people go to Beverly Hills without even noticing the La Brea Tar Pits. I guess the smell of hot asphalt masks the scent of the tar. At any rate, the La Brea Pits hold some of the world's best paleontological finds from the Cenozoic period. Sabertoothed tigers, mastadons, and other massive mammals seem to have fallen into these pits over the millenia. Take a look at the museum -- it's air conditioned, and it makes for a nice diversion from the LA experience.