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Adamson House: Family Fun in LA

The Adamson House and Malibu Lagoon Museum in Malibu is a great place to take the family for a little day trip R & R. It’s right in our backyard, but it feels like you’ve left the ‘burbs and are really exploring California’s historic coastline.

Adamson House Welcome message

I first encountered the Adamson House as a film location, back in my former life as a Script Supervisor. Picture Danny Glover and Kelly Lynch in an adaptation of the Raymond Chandler story Red Wind directed by Agnieszka Holland – and picture us there until all hours of the night trying to get it right. A problem you will not have when visiting during the day, luckily.

Adamson House Malibu By Los Angeles (Own work) [CC-BY-SA-3.0 ( or GFDL (], via Wikimedia Commons

The house has a fascinating history, built by the family who had owned the last Malibu Spanish Land grant and who went on to own the famous Malibu Potteries factory. Malibu Tile, as it is commonly known, can be seen all over the house and grounds.

fountain made of tile at Adamson Housepatio at Adamson Housewire decoration Adamson Houselooking up at window with window box & tile adamson houseMailbu Tile detail Adamson Houseglass bottle windowlow fountain Adamson Houseoutdoor fireplace Adamson Housebeautiful trees lining Mailbu Creek Adamson House

If your kids are the type that can sustain interest during a 1-hour architecture & history tour, I highly recommend it. If not, the grounds are plenty interesting to keep you occupied. My family and I roamed around one day and just enjoyed the scenery.

Adamson House Historic Marker

Now a State Park, a National Historic Site and a California Historical Landmark, Adamson House is located where the Malibu Creek flows into the Pacific Ocean. The setting is quite idyllic and it can be rented out for special occasions, so you may see wedding photos being taken when you visit.

Nature along the shore at Adamson House

There’s a path that leads down to the beach, and a walk along the shore is a great way to finish your day of exploring. And while I can’t promise you’ll always see celebrities among the surfers, we spotted Scott Caan in a wetsuit the day we were there, so it can happen.

While walking around the grounds is free, there is a fee for the tours and museum. Parking is available for a fee in the nearby lot or along PCH, and the public restroom is refreshingly clean and nicely decorated.

Adamson House, 23200 Pacific Coast Highway, Malibu, CA 90265

{Photo of Adamson House courtesy of Wikimedia Commons.  All others taken by Sarah Auerswald.}


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