California Academy of Sciences in San Francisco, CA

55 Music Concourse DriveSan Francisco, CA 94118
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California Academy of Sciences in San Francisco, California

Overview

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.

Description

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.

Hours:
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.


Tripster Customer Reviews

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TripAdvisor Reviews
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ShonaMargaret
Auckland, New Zealand
"something for everyone"
TripAdvisor user rating 5 out of 5
Reviewed May 20, 2019 NEW
We visited with 3 generations and our allowed 4 hours went very quickly. Lay out, displays, variety, information pitched at a good level to satisfy most, make this a great outing. The cafe covers all needs, water fountains, rest rooms, shops etc are available for the necessary diversions from exhibitions. Repeat visits needed!
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Arlric
Bucks ENGLAND
"Intersting day out"
TripAdvisor user rating 5 out of 5
Reviewed May 19, 2019 NEW
Decided to visit as the weather was awfull, wettest May in San Francisco fourteen years! it is not the cheapest to enter but if you are interested in animals (pleanty of fish in the aquarium, and butterflies in the rainforrest exhibit, with a few frogs, toads and lizard to name a few more. There are free talks in the Planetarium and other events especially if you have children, but you don't need them to go, as we are not youngsters!
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Neil Y
Los Angeles, California
"Mostly for Kids"
TripAdvisor user rating 4 out of 5
Reviewed May 16, 2019 NEW
My guest really enjoyed the aquariums and the other water-related exhibits. I've been several times before.
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pearlh2017
Inverness, California
"California Academy of Sciences 🐸"
TripAdvisor user rating 5 out of 5
Reviewed May 15, 2019 NEW
California Academy of sciences what a beautiful spot it is great memories and still around check it out great place to bring kids , couples friends 🦋🐢🦖
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oliveremily
Elkins Park, Pennsylvania
"Incredible, hands-on science museum"
TripAdvisor user rating 5 out of 5
Reviewed May 11, 2019 NEW
The rainforest, aquarium, and planetarium are very thoughtfully designed and well executed. Our six year old daughter loved the rooms at the top of the museum designed for hands-on activities. Great staff onsite throughout, especially upstairs in the hands-on section. We also were surprised and delighted by the living rooftop; it’s the most interesting of its kind that we have seen.
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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