California Academy Of Sciences6138 Votes Currently Closed
- Address: 55 Music Concourse Dr, San Francisco, CA 94118, United States, 94118
- Timings: 09:30 am - 05:00 pm Details
- Phone: +1-4153798000
- Ticket Price: 34 USD
- Time Required: 04:00 Hrs
- Tags: Museums, Aquarium, Educational Site, Planetarium , Entertainment, Architecture , Natural History Museums, Social, Arts
The California Academy of Sciences is science museum in San Francisco and one of the largest natural history museums in the world. Originally established in 1853, this oldest museum in California has an aquarium, a planetarium, and a rainforest. It is located in the heart of San Francisco’s Golden Gate Park on a sprawling land of 400,000 square feet. It is also a scientific and educational institution that is working towards exploring, explaining, and sustaining life. You can easily spend more than half a day here.
California academy of sciences exhibits -
Steinhart Aquarium -
More than 40,000 animals from 900 species call Steinhart Aquarium home. You will get to see the marine life at the California Coast as well as Philippine Coral Reefs here. It also arranges daily diving shows that take you to their special twilight zone. You will come across living corals and animals that glow in the dark. Take a tour of the Swamp area to see unique white alligator and turtles. The aquarium has a penguin colony and Water Planer that has, pythons, pipefish, jellies, lumpsuckers, and seahorses.
Kimball Natural History Museum -
Learn all about the process of evolution at the Kimball Natural History Museum. The Tusher African Hall tells you about the history that dates back to 7 million years along with fossils of early humans. At the Color of Life, you will understand how colors play an important role in our ecosystem. Giants of Land and Sea has some of the largest marine and land animals. It also explains the natural phenomenon that changes the geography. Gems and Minerals Unearthed has a fascinating display of Academy's geology collection. The Project Lab will give you a glimpse of scientists doing their work.
Osher Rainforest -
From butterflies to amphibians and from spiders to enormous Amazonian fish, Osher Rainforest has it all. This exhibit is inside a glass dome. Go through the Flooded Forest tunnel and be a part of the Amazonian tank that has numerous tropical, freshwater fish. You can also enjoy some hands-on activities at the Naturalist Center. These interactive experiences make Osher Rainforest unique and popular amongst visitors.
Morrison Planetarium -
The 75-foot tall dome at the Morrison Planetarium has the digital universe that shows the latest findings, discoveries, and theories. The show tickets for the planetarium are included in the admission fee and you can easily reserve these at the planetarium kiosk. If you take the Nightlife VIP Tour, you will get a reserved space in the Planetarium.
California Academy of Sciences Nightlife is arranged every Thursday from 6 pm to 10 pm. It is an exciting addition that gives you access to all the exhibits after hours. From food and cocktails to entertainment and exhibits, you will find everything here. Penguins+Pajamas Sleepovers that are hosted throughout the year are loved by children.
There are several options to choose from when it comes to satiate your hunger at the academy.
- The Terrace - Enjoy seasonal dishes that are made from local ingredients.
- The Academy Café - From pizza to sushi, you will easily find your favorite dish here.
The Academy store offers everything from clothes, books, science kits to jewelry. Buy lovely souvenirs here that represent different exhibits.
- Academy Behind-the-Scenes Tours - Take a one-hour guided tour to see the research collection that is not open to the public.
- Aquarium Behind-the-Scenes Tours - Understand how biologists are taking care of 40,000 animals and how their breakfast is prepared. It will also give you behind-the-scenes access.
- NightLife VIP Tours - Opt for this tour and get free cocktails along with a tour of gem and mineral collection. You will also get express entry into the building.
- Animal Encounter - Get VIP entrance to Osher Rainforest and see the animals that are not on display.
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California Academy Of Sciences Travel Tips
- Strollers are allowed throughout the museum, with the exception of the Shake House section of the Earthquake exhibit.
- If you need to leave the museum but plan to return the same day, please be sure to get your hand stamped at the exit.
- Dress in layers as the rainforest area gets quite warm.
- The entrance is wheelchair-accessible.
- An interpreter who is with differently-abled visitor gets free entry.
- The whole premises is designed in such a way that it visitors who are blind or partially challenged and visitors who are deaf or hearing-impaired can also explore.
- Service dogs are welcome.
- Group of 10 and more may get a 15% discount.
- Sign up for their updates to know California Academy of Sciences free day.
- California Academy of Sciences Free Day - Neighborhood Free Weekends are arranged a couple of times every year that allow San Francisco residents free entry.
- Admission for children under 3 is free throughout the year.
- Senior Admission Package gets a discounted rate for lunch.
- You can buy tickets online through Labor Day weekend to save 4%.
- Any active-duty military personnel are eligible for military discount.
- Some tours offer a 10-percent discount in academy dining and shopping venues.
- You will find California Academy of Sciences parking free on the street and paid-parking near the academy.
- Paid parking and street parking both are available. But, keep in mind that parking spots are limited and fill up fast.
Entrance Ticket Details For California Academy Of Sciences
California academy of sciences prices -
- Adult: USD 39.95
- Senior (ages 65+ with ID): USD 34.95
- Youth (ages 12-17): USD 34.95
- Student (ages 18+ with ID): USD 34.95
- Child (ages 4-11): USD 29.95
- Child 3 and under: Free
California academy of sciences tickets for Members: Free
California academy of sciences group prices (10 or more) -
- Adult: USD 33.96
- Senior (ages 65+ with ID): USD 29.71
- Youth (ages 12-17): USD 29.71
- Student (ages 18+ with ID): USD 29.71
- Child (ages 4-11): USD 25.46
- Child 3 and under: Free
California Academy of Sciences Nightlife Tickets -
- Members: USD 12
- Non- members: USD 15
Behind-the-Scenes Tours Tickets -
- General admission: USD 24.95 per person
- Members: USD 19.95 per member
Penguins+Pajamas Sleepovers prices -
- General admission: USD 119 per person
- Members: USD 99 per member
School Field Trips Tickets -
- San Francisco school groups: Free
- Other California school groups: USD 9.95 per person
- California-based youth serving organizations: USD 16.95 per person
California Academy Of Sciences Hours
General Hours -
- Monday – Saturday: 9:30 am – 5 pm
- Sunday: 11 am – 5 pm
Members Hours -
- Tuesday: 8:30 – 9:30 am
- Sunday: 10 – 11 am
California academy of sciences nightlife hours (21+ with ID):
- Thursday: 6 – 10 pm
Aquarium Behind-the-Scenes Tour hours -
- Monday–Friday at 1 pm
- Weekends at 10 am, 1 pm, and 3 pm
Academy Behind-the-Scenes Tour hours -
- Monday–Friday at 11 am and 2 pm
- Weekends at 11 am, 2 pm, and 3:30 pm
- Last entry one hour before closing.
How to Reach California Academy Of Sciences
Take the #44-O'Shaughnessy bus that stops right across the academy.
The #5-Fulton bus is also a good option.
You can also take the N-Judah Muni Metro that takes you to 9th Avenue and Irving Street. This stop is hardly 10 minutes away from the academy.
If you are visiting on weekends or holidays, you can opt for the Golden Gate Park Shuttle.
- Academy Cafe
- The Terrace
- Pacific Catch
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29.92% of people who visit San Francisco include California Academy Of Sciences in their plan
09 AM - 10 AM
78.08% of people start their California Academy Of Sciences visit around 09 AM - 10 AM
People usually take around 4 Hrs to see California Academy Of Sciences
92.19% of people prefer to travel by car while visiting California Academy Of Sciences
California Academy Of Sciences Reviews & Ratings
What an awesome museum!! So many great exhibits I felt like it had everything you could ask for in terms of natural history, and the planetarium was rad (though get in line early if you want tickets for that!). We were able to use our Discover and Go passes through the Berkeley Public Library to visit for free, anyone who is local should definitely check if their library provides something similar because getting in for free made the experience that much better.
This is a sort of an all-in-one museum. There’s a planetarium, an aquarium, a rain forest and an interactive science museum. My kids really enjoyed the rain forest, which is mainly themed towards environmental protection and awareness. It has some interesting species of plants, and lots of butterflies! The aquarium is also very well made, with a diverse variety of specimens. The science museum is rather limited. There is also a roof garden, and the lawns around the area are very pleasant. Great place to spend a few hours with kids, especially on a cold and foggy day! A bit on the expensive side, though.
Although it's a tad pricy, it's well worth the experience. The exhibits are diverse and interactive. We spent the entire day here. It's well worth the money to buy the season pass and go as many times as you want to. You have a fast pass entrance and get in earlier than day use visitors. My favorite part was the stingrays and butterfly exhibits.
A place where you can spend a whole day and learn about the unique fauna native to this part of the globe in a very family friendly and informative way. There's a cafe and bunch of large spaces to enjoy your day here. As a tip: grab the SF visitor pass and you get a free pass to this museum as well.
It's not the same as when I was a child, only one alligator now, used to have 5. My children don't know and it's for them to learn so if they like it that's all that matters. We go 2-3 times a year(so they don't get bored).