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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 #7 of 47 Attractions in Cambridge
Certificate of Excellence 2014
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Type: Natural History Museums
Fee: Yes
Recommended length of visit: 1-2 hours
Owner description: More than 12,000 specimens are on display, including the renowned collection of 3,000 'Glass Flowers,' amazingly realistic flame-worked glass models... more » Owner description: More than 12,000 specimens are on display, including the renowned collection of 3,000 'Glass Flowers,' amazingly realistic flame-worked glass models of flowering plants commissioned to teach botany to students in the early 20th century. Family favorites include the dinosaurs and prehistoric mammals as well as more than 500 current day mammals, including skeletons of a rhino, hippo, giraffe and three whales. Outstanding Earth Sciences gallery with rare minerals and meteorites. New exhibits on New England Forests, Sea Creatures in Glass, Mollusks: Shelled Masters of the Marine Realm. « less
Useful Information: Activities for older children, Activities for young children
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395 reviews from our community

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Albuquerque, New Mexico
Senior Reviewer
9 reviews 9 reviews
4 attraction reviews
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 17, 2014 NEW

Worth traveling a long way to see - especially check out the exhibit of hand-made glass flowers and glass sea invertibrates

Was this review helpful? Yes 1
Bremen, Georgia, USA
Senior Contributor
25 reviews 25 reviews
6 attraction reviews
4 helpful votes 4 helpful votes
5 of 5 stars Reviewed September 11, 2014

What an amazing place! I could spend hours here - and did. Each exhibit leads you into the next room, and the next and it is inviting, interesting, fascinating. I will be back for more visits over the years.

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Sacramento, California
Senior Reviewer
8 reviews 8 reviews
7 attraction reviews
1 helpful vote 1 helpful vote
3 of 5 stars Reviewed September 9, 2014

A Harvard university museum open to public with small entrance fee of $12. Museum is not very big but has good collection of natural artifacts such as rocks, skeletons and various species. One of the exhibit is Tree of Life project which is very interesting interactive and informative. It can find biological connection between any two objects you choose from... More

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Quincy MA
Senior Contributor
28 reviews 28 reviews
15 attraction reviews
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 7, 2014

While the glass botany exhibit, and the famous gems and minerals exhibit, are shown in old fashioned wood and glass cases, this lends atmosphere and brings the viewer back to a time when this was, indeed, the only time such detailed, gorgeous parts of nature could be inspected by lay people. Both exhibits feature a great deal of scientific classification... More

Was this review helpful? Yes 2
logan, ut
Top Contributor
110 reviews 110 reviews
37 attraction reviews
40 helpful votes 40 helpful votes
4 of 5 stars Reviewed September 3, 2014

While this museum lacked the bells and whistles often connected with this sort of facility, the displays, presentations, and material were interesting and informative. I liked being in an older building at Harvard, and especially enjoyed seeing things like dino bones, stuffed animals, and rocks.

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Toronto, Canada
Senior Contributor
41 reviews 41 reviews
22 attraction reviews
30 helpful votes 30 helpful votes
3 of 5 stars Reviewed September 2, 2014

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
24 reviews 24 reviews
6 attraction reviews
26 helpful votes 26 helpful votes
1 of 5 stars Reviewed August 30, 2014

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
11 helpful votes 11 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

Was this review helpful? Yes 1
Niceville, Florida
Contributor
14 reviews 14 reviews
9 attraction reviews
6 helpful votes 6 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
31 reviews 31 reviews
75 helpful votes 75 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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