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Harvard Museum of Natural History

26 Oxford Street, Cambridge, MA 02138
617 495 3045
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As featured in 3 days in Boston
Ranked #5 of 47 Attractions in Cambridge
Certificate of Excellence 2014
Type: Natural History Museums
Fee: Yes
Recommended length of visit: 1-2 hours
Owner description: This is the public museum of Harvard's three research museums. More than 12,000 of the 21 million specimens are on display, including the renowned... more » Owner description: This is the public museum of Harvard's three research museums. More than 12,000 of the 21 million specimens are on display, including the renowned collection of 3,000 'Glass Flowers,' amazingly realistic flame-worked glass models of flowering plants used to teach botany to students in the 19th and early 20th centuries. Family favorites include the dinosaurs and other prehistoric mammals as well as more than 500 current day mammals, including skeletons of a rhino, hippo, giraffe and three whales. « less
Useful Information: Activities for older children, Activities for young children
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389 reviews from our community

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English first
Toronto, Canada
Senior Contributor
41 reviews 41 reviews
22 attraction reviews
28 helpful votes 28 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed September 2, 2014 NEW

The collection is average. Some of the items were unique and quite impressive. I actually learned quite a bit through my visit. The walk from Harvard Subway to the museum is a great way to see some of the University grounds. Had tickets through a CItyPass, cheap.

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New jersey
Senior Contributor
23 reviews 23 reviews
5 attraction reviews
26 helpful votes 26 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed August 30, 2014 NEW

Not what I expected. I guess after visiting NYC and DC museums my standards are way too high. This museum is in need of an update. You would think with all the mula Harvard has their museum would be amazing. Not a chance. It was educational but very old and the animals seem to be all stuffed up behind glass... More

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London, Canada
Senior Contributor
31 reviews 31 reviews
19 attraction reviews
8 helpful votes 8 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed August 25, 2014

Don't waste your valuable time visiting Boston on this third rate museum. Given the name Harvard I was expecting a world class facility. Instead what I found was a tired poorly staged collection that had very little visual appeal. The rocks were interesting and the experience goes downhill from there. There is so much more to see and do in... More

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Niceville, Florida
Contributor
14 reviews 14 reviews
9 attraction reviews
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed August 24, 2014

Perhaps because I had recently been to the Museum of Fine Arts, I found the seemingly haphazard flow of the museum to be disconcerting. The geology displays are interesting, as are the glass flowers. However, unless you enjoy seeing the taxidermist's art with little or no staging, then this museum is only worth the time as part of a larger... More

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London, United Kingdom
Senior Contributor
30 reviews 30 reviews
71 helpful votes 71 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 14, 2014

Simply don't miss it. Fantastic. Book parking online beforehand, register as museum visitor. Glass flowers and room of rocks truly wonderful.

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Thessaloniki, Greece
Senior Contributor
37 reviews 37 reviews
12 attraction reviews
9 helpful votes 9 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 14, 2014

A nice musuem with a very impressive collection of glass flowers. Worths a visit if you go to Harvard.

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Top Contributor
130 reviews 130 reviews
49 attraction reviews
61 helpful votes 61 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed August 13, 2014

This place was neat with the glass flowers exhibit , rocks and skeletons! Fun for kids of all ages and not too much of a walk off the T stop -red line to Harvard Square

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Cottered
Contributor
12 reviews 12 reviews
6 attraction reviews
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 11, 2014

What a great museum for people of any age. The displays are well designed and the quality of the special exhibits was really good. Particularly enjoyed the glass flowers and marine life - it was amazing to think how they created them.

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Miami, Florida
Senior Contributor
22 reviews 22 reviews
16 attraction reviews
33 helpful votes 33 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed August 10, 2014 via mobile

I guess our expectations of this museum were so minimal that we were really blown away by the breadth and variety of exhibits. The same was true for the adjacent Peabody Museum. A pleasant surprise and two must-see museums in the Cambridge/Harvard area.

Was this review helpful? Yes 1
Senior Contributor
22 reviews 22 reviews
8 attraction reviews
16 helpful votes 16 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed August 6, 2014

The museum has many interesting artifacts. The building and the displays all need work and updating. Some of the taxidermy leaves a lot to be desired--poor quality.

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