Visiting Caltech

Accomodations

red-pushpinCaltech

 1200 E. California Blvd., Pasadena, CA 91125


 (626)395-6811

For alumni, the on-campus Athenaeum may be an option. For everyone else, there are many good hotels in the area.

The closest (and most reasonably-priced) include:

red-dotSaga Motor Hotel

 1633 E. Colorado Blvd., Pasadena, CA 91106


 (626)795-0431

yellow-dotPasadena Travelodge

 2131 E. Colorado Blvd., Pasadena, CA 91107


 (626)796-3121

Somewhat more upscale:

blue-dotCourtyard by Marriott

 180 N. Fair Oaks Ave., Pasadena, CA 91103


 (626)403-7600

ltblue-dotPasadena Hilton

 168 S. Los Robles Ave., Pasadena, CA 91101


 (626)577-1000

Much more upscale:

green-dotRitz Carlton, Huntington Hotel

 1401 S. Oak Knoll, Pasadena, CA 91106


 (626)568-3900

Getting to Pasadena

The three airports nearest Caltech are Los Angeles International (LAX), Bob Hope (formerly Burbank), and Ontario. Each airport has car rental services, as well as shuttle service to Caltech and the Pasadena area. Super Shuttle is recommended for shuttles, as there is a discount for people going to Caltech. Public transportation generally involves many transfers.

Flying to LAX

To get a shuttle, exit the baggage claim area and look for the ORANGE overhead "SHARED RIDE VANS" sign. Tell the driver you are going to Caltech; if you are asked for an address or intersection, Holliston Ave. and Del Mar Blvd. is near the southeast corner of campus (see the campus map for other streets).

If you are driving, take Sepulveda Blvd. south to the Glenn Anderson Fwy (105) east to the Harbor Fwy (110) north to the Pasadena Fwy, which becomes the Arroyo Parkway.
   OR:
Take the San Diego Fwy (405) north to the Santa Monica Fwy (10) east to the Harbor Fwy (110) north to the Pasadena Fwy, which becomes the Arroyo Parkway.    Then:
Take the Arroyo Parkway straight ahead (north); turn right (east) on California Blvd. Proceed approximately one and a quarter miles. The Caltech campus will be on your left. Turn left (north) at Hill Ave. Turn left (west) at San Pasqual St. Turn right (north) onto Holliston Ave. Proceed to the Holliston Parking Structure on your right at 370 S. Holliston Ave. (Building #66 on the campus map) to register your car and receive instructions on where to park.

Flying to Bob Hope (Burbank)

If you are getting a shuttle, tell the driver you are going to Caltech; if you are asked for an address or intersection, Holliston Ave. and Del Mar Blvd. is near the southeast corner of campus (see the campus map for other streets).

If you are driving, take the Golden State Fwy (Interstate 5) south to the Ventura Fwy (134) east to the Foothill Fwy (210) east. Exit at Hill Avenue. Turn right (south) onto Hill. Take Hill south to San Pasqual St. and make a right (west). Turn right (north) onto Holliston Ave. Proceed to the Holliston Parking Structure on your right at 370 S. Holliston Ave. (Building #66 on the campus map) to register your car and receive instructions on where to park.

Flying to Ontario

If you are getting a shuttle, tell the driver you are going to Caltech; if you are asked for an address or intersection, Holliston Ave. and Del Mar Blvd. is near the southeast corner of campus (see the campus map for other streets).

If you are driving, take the San Bernardino Fwy (10) west to Orange Freeway (57) north to the Foothill Fwy (210); take the 210 west to Pasadena. Exit at Hill Ave; turn left (south) on Hill. Take Hill south to San Pasqual St. and make a right (west). Turn right (north) onto Holliston Ave. Proceed to the Holliston Parking Structure on your right at 370 S. Holliston Ave. (Building #66 on the campus map) to register your car and receive instructions on where to park.

Driving

Caltech is easily accessible from both the 110 (Harbor) Freeway (southwest of campus) and the 210 (Foothill) Freeway (north of campus). Please look at the Maps page for maps of the local freeway system.

If you're taking the 110 freeway, follow the freeway north until it ends (where it becomes the Arroyo Parkway). Take the Arroyo Parkway straight ahead (north); turn right (east) on California Blvd. Proceed approximately one and a quarter miles. The Caltech campus will be on your left-hand side. Turn left (north) at Hill Ave. Turn left (west) at San Pasqual St. Turn right (north) onto Holliston Ave. Proceed to the Holliston Parking Structure on your right at 370 S. Holliston Ave. (Building #66 on the campus map) to register your car and receive instructions on where to park.

If you're taking the 210 freeway, exit at Hill Avenue; turn south on Hill. Take Hill south to San Pasqual St. and make a right (west). Turn right (north) onto Holliston Ave. Proceed to the Holliston Parking Structure on your right at 370 S. Holliston Ave. (Building #66 on the campus map) to register your car and receive instructions on where to park.

Other

Other options available include rail and bus services. These may only be of interest to people in the Southern California area.

On Campus

A self-guided walking tour provides a leisurely introduction to Caltech's lovely campus. The essentials can be found on the interactive campus map or the printable version. The Numerical Relativity research group can generally be found around West Bridge (building #34 on the maps). The bookstore is in building #51. A public cafe (good place for lunch) is in building #52.

The Caltech Undergraduate Admissions office offers a very helpful guide to things to do while at Caltech.

Around Pasadena

For food and various shopping needs, Lake Avenue is the closest place to Caltech. To find it, just walk two blocks West from campus. Good restaurants are found along its length, North from California Blvd. Two grocery stores can be found at the corner of Lake and California. Trader Joe's is on Lake, just South of Del Mar (set in quite a bit). For a quick lunch or light dinner, the Mediterranean Cafe on Del Mar, just East of Lake, is highly recommended.

The Pasadena Arts Bus runs frequently all around the Pasadena area, and is cheap and convenient.

A perennial favorite of visitors to Pasadena is the Huntington Library, Art Collections, and Botanic Gardens. Admission is free on the first Thursday of every month; $15 at other times, with a $5 discount given to students.

For nightlife around Pasadena, Old Town is a nice place to walk, eat, shop, catch a movie, or get a drink. It is found on Colorado Blvd. (3 blocks North of campus) and about a mile to the West. The Ice House is a top-rate comedy club nearby, with very reasonable ticket prices.

Interesting hikes of varying lengths can be found in the San Gabriel mountains to the North of Pasadena, and somewhat farther afield. One good and up-to-date reference is this one.

Around Los Angeles

Public transportation is not quite as useful around Los Angeles as it is in other cities. Nonetheless, this is an option for many destinations. The Gold Line light rail runs right near Caltech Campus, and several buses pass nearby, headed downtown. Check out the Metro web site for more information, including a helpful trip planner. Otherwise, a car is very useful, and saves a lot of time.

The main tourist destinations are Hollywood and Santa Monica. The Santa Monica beach and boardwalk are nice places to hang out and get some sun. Walking and bus tours of Hollywood are widely available. Universal Studios has rides and tours of the movie and TV production lots. Paramount Studios also gives interesting tours. Disney Land needs no further explanation. LEGO Land is a not-dissimilar experience aimed at kids. Knott's Berry Farm and Six Flags do good jobs with the usual roller coaster fare.

Some people enjoy being in the audience of Jay Leno's Tonight Show. There's really no accounting for taste. For the snooty high-brow types, the J. Paul Getty Center and Getty Villa, L.A. County Museum of Art, and the L.A. Music Center (with its wild Walt Disney Concert Hall) usually satisfy.

Four Areas of Science

Inspiration

Traveler, there is no path.
Paths are made by walking.

Antonio Machado

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