Cave Dweller: The coolest caves in Southern California discovered!
Where are all my explorers at? I recently discovered that Southern California is home to numerous caves that you won’t find in a travel book. The idea of exploring these rich caverns dawned on me after watching Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade recently, and I got inspired to find all the beautiful grottos that exist in and around LA. Being raised in Florida, my parents used to take me to all sorts of caves including Carlsbad Caverns National Park (New Mexico), and Mammoth Cave National Park (Kentucky). For my bachelorette party, I ventured over to Tulum, Mexico and visited the famous cenotes which you can find all throughout the region. I have lived in LA for over a dozen years and I had never visited our local caves, until now. This weekend I had the pleasure of stopping at two astounding caves, The Bronson Caves in Griffith Park and The enclosure ruins at The Old LA Zoo. It was such a treat to roam around and check out these hidden gems and the fact that they are local to LA was fabulous. Check out my individual experiences below: WARNING: There is wildlife involved! Read ahead if you dare :)
One of the coolest and most unique caves in the Wild Wild West are the Bronson Caves in Griffith Park. Home to many movies including George of The Jungle, Under The Silver Lake, and even the entrance to the 1960s version of Batman, this cave has Hollywood written all over it. Here’s a truth bomb for you: There’s a lovely little hike to get to it with scenery of The Hollywood Sign and a ton of wildflowers. In fact, on our way up the trail, we ran into a few of our coyote friends. They were pretty curious and followed us around which made our hike a little more interesting. Needless to say, it’s a spot that is unfrequented by many people and if you’re looking for some peace of mind, a great place to go.
The hike begins on the south side of Griffith Park (enter on Canyon Drive). Drive up Canyon and you will see a dirt road on the southeast side that’s marked off. Park your car in the small lot (if available) and the hike is only around .65 miles long (so easy!) Walk through the mark off and you will run into the cave up the trail. Easy to find and easy to get to! You can find out more info HERE!
I have been in this area numerous times before but never realized that there were ruins located in the heart of LA. The Old LA Zoo is a landmark that’s been around for awhile and clearly where they used to have the Old Zoo. I know many will argue that this establishment is not a cave but it actually contains a few caves hidden within the walls of this rocky structure. To prove my point, I nestled myself among the glorious rocks and even heard some bat noises within the structure of the walls. It is indeed a grotto that people visit every year and they put up picnic tables nearby so people can enjoy a nice afternoon in the park. Check out the boulders below!