California Academy of Sciences in San Francisco, CA

55 Music Concourse DriveSan Francisco, CA 94118
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Located in Golden Gate Park, the California Academy of Sciences offers a museum experience unlike any other in the world. Where else can you find an aquarium, planetarium, and natural history museum all in the same building? When inside, guests can explore a 4-story rainforest, waddle with penguins, learn about space, engage with interactive exhibits, and so much more.


from California Academy of Sciences
The California Academy of Sciences, based in San Francisco’s Golden Gate Park, is home to a world-class aquarium, planetarium, rainforest, and natural history museum—all under one living roof.

Inside one of the greenest museums in the world, visitors find exhibits and experiences that can only be seen at the Academy including 40,000 animals living in the aquarium, the four-story rainforest with its free-flying birds and butterflies, one of the most accurate digital planetariums in the world, a variety of interactive programs and activities, and more!

Newest Exhibit: Giants of Land and Sea.
Explore Northern California's natural wonders through a variety of experiences: feel your way through an immersive fog room, keep your balance in an earthquake simulator, virtually ascend to the top of a towering redwood, and see a variety of specimens and fossils.

Steinhart Aquarium:
Highlights include the Philippine Coral Reef, the California Coast tank, and Twilight Zone: Deep Reefs Revealed.

Osher Rainforest:
A glass dome houses the four-story living rainforest, where birds and butterflies fly freely among lush tropical trees, plants, and other animals from around the world.

Living Roof:
Visit our rolling green roof for views of Golden Gate Park and beyond. California wildflowers bloom in spring while dozens of native plants provide habitat for birds, bees, and butterflies year-round.

African Penguins:
Visit our colony of charismatic South African birds. Join a biologist for penguin feedings at 10:30 am and 3:00 pm daily.

The Swamp:
Meet its most famous resident, Claude, an albino American alligator, who shares his home with a trio of prehistoric-looking alligator snapping turtles.

Morrison Planetarium:
Reserve a ticket (free with admission) at the Planetarium kiosk to see our newest show, Expedition Reef.

The Academy is open 365 days a year.
General Admission
Monday – Saturday: 9:30 am – 5:00 pm
Sunday: 11:00 am – 5:00 pm

NightLife (21+ with ID):
Thursday: 6:00 pm – 10:00 pm

Last entry one hour before closing. Holiday hours subject to change.

San Francisco Customer Reviews

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TripAdvisor Reviews
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Zoe R
Mandurah, Australia
"Amazing!! "
TripAdvisor user rating 5 out of 5
Reviewed July 16, 2019 NEW
We had so much fun and spent most of the day here. It was absolutely massive and there were many different exhibitions to see. If you get a chance, make sure you check out a show at the planetarium. We watched a coral reef one and it was very educational and exciting. If you've never experienced an earthquake before, make sure you check out the simulation. The aquarium was so beautiful, as well as the indoor rain forest. We would definitely go back if we visit San Francisco again and 100% recommend it to anyone of any age.
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"A great family day out"
TripAdvisor user rating 5 out of 5
Reviewed July 13, 2019 NEW
We went to the Academy of Sciences as part of our CityPass package. Our kids (7 and 5 y.o) had a great time, even though they were a bit jet lagged. They did the junior scientist experience (free, just ask at the bag check in). Exploratorium was slightly better IMHO
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"Awesome visit to Academy of Sciences"
TripAdvisor user rating 5 out of 5
Reviewed July 13, 2019 NEW
We had the SF explorer pass and used it to buy tickets. There were a lot of children on field trips the day we went, but we managed to see everything in the museum within 3 hours. I especially like the free planetarium shows that are offered throughout the day. The rain forest is one of the best exhibits there and then we spent a lot of time in the aquarium. There is a café on site or you can bring your lunch and sit outside. One of the best SF attractions and not to be missed!
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"Must see for sea and space fans"
TripAdvisor user rating 4 out of 5
Reviewed July 09, 2019 NEW
Went with family and my 1 year old nephew. Located in a park with ample parking spaces (for a fee), The price is $40 per person which is a little steep but they often have Groupon deals. Plenty of water exhibits, the planetarium has multiple shows during the day. The rooftop is beautiful. Try going on a weekday where there will be less people.
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"A must-see for the family-- especially the kids in school"
TripAdvisor user rating 5 out of 5
Reviewed July 07, 2019 NEW
This is one of those places where you learn as you go and enjoy your time with family. This place makes interesting information about our planet more enjoyable, especially for school-age kids. It's one of the better ways to spend a day in the city together!
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California Academy of Sciences is located at 55 Music Concourse DriveSan Francisco, CA 94118
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Frequently Asked Questions about California Academy of Sciences

Is the museum accessible?
Yes. California Academy of Sciences is fully wheelchair accessible.  Manual wheelchairs are available to borrow free of charge at Coat Check on a first-come, first-served basis in exchange for a photo ID.

In addition, all exhibits have built-in detection points for the blind, and our public elevators are equipped with auditory signals. Wherever possible, exhibits have been made tactile for an enhanced experience. For the deaf and hard of hearing, transcripts are available for all regularly scheduled Planetarium shows and other multimedia in the Academy and assistive listening transmitters are positioned in the Planetarium, Earthquake Mini-Dome Theater, and Earthquake Shake House exhibit. Interpreters accompanying a deaf or hearing-impaired individual are admitted free of charge.

Does the museum offer dining options?
Yes. Guests can dine at The Terrace and the Academy Cafe.

What are the hours of operation?
California Academy of Sciences is open every day of the year with the following hours:

  • Monday–Saturday: 9:30 am – 5:00 pm
  • Sunday: 11:00 am – 5:00 pm