View of the Garden Terrace Cafe and Central Garden at the Getty Center with Los Angeles in the background.

View of the Garden Terrace Cafe and Central Garden at the Getty Center.

Each year 1.5 million visitors from around the world visit the Getty Center—most of them by car. Parking is available right in our main lot, which holds 1,200 cars and has designated accessible spaces, as well as plug-in spots for electric vehicles.

During our busiest times of year—summer and the holidays—all available Getty parking fills quickly. (There is no street parking.) Here are our best tips on when to visit for easiest entry, plus how to get real-time parking information if you’re heading our way.

1. Visit Off-Peak

Our visitorship varies with time of day and time of year. We’re usually busiest from Memorial Day through Labor Day, spring break, and major holidays. (Thanksgiving weekend is our busiest of the year.) On any given day, we’re busiest from about 11am to about 3pm. Try this:

Arrive before 11am — Avoid the midday crowds! The parking lot opens at 9:30am—arrive then and you’ll breeze in. The tram, coffee cart, and gardens also open at 9:30, while the galleries open at 10.

…Or arrive after 3pm — Late afternoons and evenings are another savvy time to visit. As a bonus, parking is $10 after 3pm, instead of the usual $15. We’re open late on Saturday evenings (till 9pm) year-round, with additional late hours on Fridays (till 9pm) during the summer.

2. Carpool or Rideshare

Carpool to cut down on air pollution and gridlock and save on parking fees. If you’re arriving with a group of 15 or more people, see our Group Visits page for details and how-to.)

The Getty Center has areas set aside for pickup and drop-off by passenger car, whether a friend is giving you a ride or you’re using a taxi, Uber, Lyft, or another service. Get the details on our Parking and Transportation page.

3. Check Parking Info Before You Arrive

For a real-time estimate on parking availability, ring our call center at (310) 440-7300 between 9am to 5pm Pacific Time every day. You can speak in English or Spanish to a helpful person who will answer your questions and give you our best available information on parking.

If you do arrive when parking is full, security officers at the main gate will give you our best estimate—usually an hour—of when parking will again be available.

4. For Events, Arrive Early

Check our Getty360 event calendar for the day you plan to visit to see if any big events are scheduled, such as concerts, talks in the auditorium, and so on. If you’re coming for one of our popular events and want to make sure to arrive on time, come early. Allow at least 30 minutes from entering the gate to get to the event location at the top of the hill, and 45 minutes at peak times.

This goes double for Saturdays Off the 405, our free, open-air music series offered several Saturday nights each summer. Depending on the DJs and bands playing, parking can fill as early as 6pm. Arrive early—browse the galleries and gardens, enjoy a picnic, and grab a glass of wine. Uber or Lyft are also good options.

5. Skip Driving Altogether

Los Angeles public transportation is getting better all the time.

Metro Bus 734 stops at the main entrance to the Getty Center Monday through Friday except holidays [PDF route and schedule here]. On weekends and holidays you can take the 234 [PDF route and schedule here], which has a similar route. Both lines connect to light rail—the Orange Line at the Van Nuys station north of the Getty, and the Expo Line at the Expo/Sepulveda station south of the Getty.

Insider tip: Don’t try to take a bus other than the 734 or 234 to the Getty. Several other bus lines stop at the service entrance to the Getty, which is at the south end of the site along Church Lane, but this is not a public entrance. Make sure to take the 734 or the 234 and get off at the main Getty entrance at the intersection of Getty Center Drive and Sepulveda Boulevard.

Fun fact: The bus stop on the Getty Center side of the street (southbound) at our main gate was designed by an architect to harmonize with the design of the Getty.

Have a question we didn’t answer? A tip we didn’t include? Let me know in the comments and I’ll reply as soon as possible, usually within a day.