California Automobile Museum


Over the holidays, my family began to go stir-crazy from staying in and trying to keep warm…so we decided a day to visit some local museums was what we needed! My husband who is a car fanatic wanted to visit the California Auto Museum while the exhibit “Automobilia”- showcasing Italian auto manufacturing (sponsored by Ferrari) was there. Somehow he thinks that his next car should be a Ferrari… not sure if I agree with him on that one!

My daughter and I were “along for the ride” and my son (whose first words were car and truck) was just as excited to see the shiny hot-rods as his daddy was! Although, we were all in for a treat and I was surprised at how much everyone in the family enjoyed the museum!


The mission of the California Automobile Museum is to educate and entertain while preserving and promoting the automobile and its influence on our lives. As you enter the museum, you can choose to take a self- guided tour through the exhibits, but I would highly recommend following the tour led by one of the knowledgeable docents.
Our docent was VERY well informed and explained everything there was to know about each vehicle on display. My husband who knows practically everything about every car made was even very impressed and was excited to learn a few new things about some of the older cars. Our docent even got down with the kids and explained how things work in a fun way so that the kids could understand and enjoy the tour!
He was patient with our two rowdy kiddos and luckily there were plenty of opportunities for the kids to climb into and “drive“ some of the classics!

Unfortunately, the building itself is not climate controlled. So while we were trying to “get out of the house and stay warm”, our plan backfired on us- since the museum was quite cold! Knowing this now, next time we go we will dress appropriately (warmer clothes and layers in the winter and cooler clothes in the summer). The museum is open to the public 10am-6:00pm, 7 days a week. Admission is $8 for adults, $4 for students, ages 4 and younger are free.

The museum is always bringing in new displays, offering classes for the auto enthusiast and changing their exhibits. An upcoming exhibit (Jan 22-March 27) is “Dropped and Chopped“, exploring the classic years of traditional hot rods and custom cars between 1946-1960. I have a feeling that this definitely won’t be the last time our family visit’s the museum!




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