Believe it or not, the two millennia of art displayed at the Norton Simon Museum (411 W. Colorado Blvd., 626/449-6840, www.nortonsimon.org , Wed.–Mon. noon–6 p.m., Fri. until 9 p.m., adults $8, seniors $4, students free) were once part of a private collection. Wealthy industrialist Norton Simon collected the thousands of works of art over 30 years.
He particularly loved the European Renaissance, the works of South and Southeast Asia, and 20th-century sculpture. Several of his most famous Rodins decorate the walkway up to the main entrance to the museum.
You can visit the lovely modern building housing large, airy galleries to study the beautiful works of fine art here. Be sure to head outside to walk through the sculpture gardens in the courtyards behind the building.
You can purchase books and reproductions in the museum store or grab a bite to eat at the simple, walk-up Garden Café.