Simi Valley Day Tripper
September 4, 2011 7:14 AM   Subscribe

Los Angeles tourism filter: Day trip to Simi Valley and Reagan Library? Help.

I will be in Southern California with family on vacation soon. My parents, brother, and I are arriving day early. We are meeting the rest of the family the next day, and will see the main sights in LA and SoCal with them.

My father and brother would like to see the Reagan Library. The best day to go is that first day, without the rest of the group. We will rent a car and drive to Simi Valley that day.

But after the Reagan Library - then what? Is there anything else worth seeing in that area? We could cut back straight west, and go through Malibu - but what do we do in Malibu? My 70 year father is not going to hang out on Malibu beach.

Help me fill out a Simi Valley day trip. What else besides the Reagan Library?

Keep in mind, the major sights back in L.A. will be covered on the other days of the trip - but something off the beaten track on the north side of LA might work.
posted by Flood to Travel & Transportation around Ciudad Juarez, Mexico (7 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Just putting it out there, the Nixon Library in Yorba Linda beats the pants off the Reagan Library in pretty much every respect; it gives a better sense of historical perspective, it's better curated, and less full of cult-of-personality Reaganites.

And Yorba Linda is right near Annaheim, if you want to go see a baseball game, or Disneyland, or some nice hiking.
posted by Jon_Evil at 7:22 AM on September 4, 2011 [1 favorite]

Six Flags Magic Mountain is less than an hour away.
posted by brujita at 7:37 AM on September 4, 2011

There are not really any other tourist destinations around Simi Valley. Personally, I love to hike in this area but that does not seem like an option for you and your father. If you are coming from a place that does not have nice shopping malls, you may like the Thousand Oaks mall or the Topanga mall. They are both large, recently renovated, and have food beyond regular mall food (and anyway, So Cal is the birthplace of mall culture).

You'll also be close to Moorpark, where there are a lot of farms. Try Underwood Farms for things like a harvest maze, pick your own pumpkin, etc.

You'll be between two of California's historically important missions. Go north for the Ventura mission, and back into the San Fernando Valley for the San Fernando mission. The Ventura mission is in a quaint street shopping district if walking around is your thing.

Somewhat near the Simi Valley is the Chumash Indian museum. Never been there, cannot vouch for it.
posted by Jason and Laszlo at 9:00 AM on September 4, 2011 [1 favorite]

Burro Flats Painted Cave

At Malibu, the Adamson House is nice. Daytripper has a pretty comprehensive list.
posted by Ideefixe at 9:25 AM on September 4, 2011

There isn't a whole lot in that area but there are a few gems depending on what you and your family like. You can visit Gardens of the World in Thousand Oaks. I haven't been there personally but it is supposed to be nice.

Paramount Ranch is an old west town built for movies and TV shows that you will probably recognize. There are lots of other similar neat spots in the Santa Monica Mountains. Malibu Creek State Park which was also the site of numerous films and TV shows is one. There is a flat trail of a mile or so to a rock pool that your father may be able to do.

Memail me if you are interested in places to eat around the area.
posted by euphorb at 12:17 PM on September 5, 2011

Not sure when you will be taking the day trip, but if any of you are interested in Greek, Roman or Etruscan antiquities, you may want to stop in Pacific Palisades (next to Malibu) for the Getty Villa, one of the locations of the J. Paul Getty Museum (Getty Villa on Wikipedia). Here are the lists of exhibitions and events.

The Getty Villa is usually open every day of the week except for Tuesdays and some upcoming Wednesdays. There's a charge for daytime parking, but admission is free (however, you have to reserve tickets in advance).

On the official site when you see two columns for different museums, focus on the righthand column for the Villa -- the lefthand column is for the Getty Center, the other Getty museum (which I also highly recommend, in case it's not on your "main sights" list).
posted by rangefinder 1.4 at 7:51 PM on September 5, 2011

This is someplace I've always wanted to see and maybe it will tickle your fancy too - Grandma Prisbbrey's Bottle Village, in Simi Valley.
posted by jvilter at 10:47 PM on September 5, 2011

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