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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 #23 of 362 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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1,387 reviews from our community

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Surrey, Canada
Top Contributor
54 reviews 54 reviews
38 attraction reviews
20 helpful votes 20 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 23, 2014 NEW

Museum, gallery, aquarium, gardens, planetarium - all in one! The Dark Universe video in Planetarium was excellent! Earthquake simulation was pretty neat - got to learn the history of San Francisco earthquakes and what they felt like. Aquarium part was good - exhibits were very clean so that was good! The rainforest is an interesting experience with all the different... More

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Toongabbie, Australia
Senior Contributor
23 reviews 23 reviews
12 attraction reviews
6 helpful votes 6 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 22, 2014 NEW

My partner and I had a lovely time here The highlights are the aquariums, which you can see lighted from above, the rainforest biome which is like an aviary/aquarium/terrarium combined, and the planetarium. My favourite thing was looking for the various frogs and small lizards in their enclosures, while my partner was super excited to see the nautilus! The planetarium... More

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Sandy Hook, Connecticut
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
3 attraction reviews
3 of 5 stars Reviewed April 21, 2014 NEW

Everyone in San Francisco told me that I HAD to see the California Academy of Sciences. I love science museums, so I was eager to go. Unfortunately, I was ultimately disappointed. Being from the east coast, I've visited both the American Museum of Natural History (in New York) and the National Museum of Natural History (the Smithsonian, in Washington, DC).... More

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New York
Senior Contributor
34 reviews 34 reviews
5 attraction reviews
50 helpful votes 50 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 21, 2014 NEW

Found this place by chance and really enjoyed it. Great green open space with nice walks and then this excellent museum/academy. Of particular enjoyment was the planetarium which was very enjoyable, although very similar if not the same as seen in NYC earlier. It would have been nice to know that before we entered but hey we still enjoyed it!... More

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Wellington, New Zealand
Contributor
18 reviews 18 reviews
7 attraction reviews
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 21, 2014 NEW

I didn't really know what to expect from this visit. I got there early, just as it opened to get the tickets for the Planetarium and was not disappointed. Great place for kids and their families.

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San Francisco, California
Contributor
14 reviews 14 reviews
10 attraction reviews
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 21, 2014 NEW

the kids had a great time. a must see if you in the San Francisco area. worth a yearly pass if you live in the area.

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cristhalsol
Contributor
11 reviews 11 reviews
5 attraction reviews
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 20, 2014 NEW

It's an amazing place to go if you're a science lover and if you love animals. its about $34 (students $29) to get in, but it's worth the visit. They even have an earthquake section where you can step in the house and it shakes like a real earth quake. Also there's a free planetarium show which is awesome. I... More

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Arlington, Virginia
Top Contributor
60 reviews 60 reviews
21 attraction reviews
30 helpful votes 30 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 19, 2014 NEW

The green roof, planetarium, and Amazonian jungle and aquarium made this well worth the visit. Get the CityPASS if you're visiting San Francisco as a tourist, as admission here is included.

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Seattle, Washington
Senior Contributor
23 reviews 23 reviews
5 attraction reviews
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed April 19, 2014 NEW

We visited this site on a family vacation (four children ages 3 - 12). Everyone, including grand parents, enjoyed the visit. There is more here to see and do than possible in a single visit.

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California
Top Contributor
109 reviews 109 reviews
37 attraction reviews
58 helpful votes 58 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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