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California Academy of Sciences

55 Music Concourse Drive, Golden Gate Park, San Francisco, CA 94118 (Golden Gate Park)
415-379-8000
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As featured in 3 days in San Francisco
Ranked #22 of 361 attractions in San Francisco
Certificate of Excellence 2013
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Type: Educational Sites, Science Museums, Aquariums, Observatories/ Planetariums, Natural History Museums
Activities: Arts and crafts, Leisure education
Fee: Yes
Recommended length of visit: 2-3 hours
Owner description: The world’s only aquarium-planetarium-rainforest-living museum. Come nose-to-beak with penguins and parrots, watch sharks and sting rays cruise... more » Owner description: The world’s only aquarium-planetarium-rainforest-living museum. Come nose-to-beak with penguins and parrots, watch sharks and sting rays cruise beneath your feet, and feel the spray of the California coast. Fly to Mars (and beyond the Milky Way!) from the safety of your planetarium seat, take a virtual safari in African Hall, or climb into the canopy of a living rainforest. Face your fears—and an albino alligator—inside the Swamp, and meet scientists as they return from research expeditions around the world. From the depths of a Philippine coral reef to the outer reaches of the Universe, it's all inside the California Academy of Sciences. « less
Useful Information: Activities for young children, Activities for older children
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1,375 reviews from our community

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California
Top Contributor
109 reviews 109 reviews
37 attraction reviews
57 helpful votes 57 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed April 18, 2014 NEW

Thursday evenings from 6-10 the Academy of Sciences in Golden Gate park opens for adults only! They offer unique exhibits, demonstrations, lectures, entertainment (things like dance, comedy, science, food, games, etc) as well as the regular exhibits offered. There are planetarium shows (the tickets go fast, so get one right away!) and on the 3rd Thursday of the month it... More

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2 reviews
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 16, 2014 NEW via mobile

Good place for children! Impressive aquarium. This place need around 3 hours for normal visiting without speedy

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San Francisco, California
Senior Contributor
40 reviews 40 reviews
15 attraction reviews
20 helpful votes 20 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 15, 2014 NEW

Took two teenage/young adults with me, they both enjoyed it. There are so many different attractions, you can see reindeer if you go during Christmas/New Year. The IMAX show is really nice, the penguins are cute! Definitely plan a day for your visit. If you want a cheaper meal then what they have, you can walk to nearby neighborhood restaurants... More

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San Francisco, California
Contributor
15 reviews 15 reviews
5 helpful votes 5 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed April 15, 2014 NEW

This is a great science museum - but if you are looking for a place with interactive exhibits, try the Exploratorium first. The CA Academy of Sciences has a cool underground aquarium and a rain forest! If you go on a Thursday night (buy tickets) there will be bars, music, and other activities. Lots of fun!

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Watford, United Kingdom
Senior Contributor
37 reviews 37 reviews
17 attraction reviews
15 helpful votes 15 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 14, 2014 NEW

Would definitely recommend this rather than the aquarium on Pier 39 - it is so much better! Lots to see and do, we ran out of time! Included in the CityPass, which made it excellent value! Fantastic location too right in the middle of Golden Gate Park - recommended.

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Saugus
Contributor
15 reviews 15 reviews
7 attraction reviews
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 12, 2014 NEW

We had a wonderful time with lots to do for the whole family. The aquarium is bigger than expected with a large variety of species. The rain forest was fabulous. The staff was friendly and helpful. The food was surprisingly good! A present day.

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San Diego
Contributor
18 reviews 18 reviews
5 attraction reviews
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 11, 2014

This is such a cool museum. Loved the rain forest atrium! And the aquarium was really great. We ran out of time since we had only budgeted a couple hours. So, be sure to give yourself the good part of a day. There is a line to see the rain forest exhibit. We didn't get to see the roof, which... More

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colorado
Senior Contributor
47 reviews 47 reviews
20 attraction reviews
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed April 9, 2014

Was a good visit and lots to experience with the aquarium feature, rainforest and the earthquake room. Would rec. as one of the museums to visit in the area and art museum is across the plaza and could easily see each in one long day.

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Redding, California
Senior Contributor
27 reviews 27 reviews
3 attraction reviews
19 helpful votes 19 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 8, 2014

Lots to see! Super cool place to take kids but I enjoyed it as well. Loved the rainforest atrium. So many cool creatures and plants to see. We wandered around all day and didn't see everything. I will say getting lunch was quite an experience. It was so incredibly packed I got a little flustered. Literally pushing through a crowd... More

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Boston
Top Contributor
100 reviews 100 reviews
49 attraction reviews
18 helpful votes 18 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 7, 2014

The green roof is so fascinating, don't miss it. The rest of the place is well worth several hours. Note the decorative pieces from the original building built into the albino crocadile areao

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