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“dull for older kids” 3 of 5 stars
Review of California Academy of Sciences

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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Ranked #12 of 317 Attractions in San Francisco
Type: Educational Sites, Natural History Museums, Science Museums, Observatories/ Planetariums, Aquariums, Museums
Activities: Arts and crafts, Leisure education
More attraction details
Attraction details
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 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.
Useful Information: Activities for young children, Activities for older children
St paul
Senior Reviewer
10 reviews 10 reviews
6 attraction reviews
Reviews in 6 cities Reviews in 6 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
“dull for older kids”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed January 12, 2013

This was over hyped. We've been to good science museums and aquariums so was ok, but not worth the time and trouble if you have seen such things elsewhere. Earthquake show was not too exciting - duh! Why would you want to be scared 1/2 to death if you live there? Makes sense, but skip it all and do more outdoors / beach / wharf type of things if you have an omni theater. I'm comparing to exhibits in Mpls, Chicago and Washington DC.

Visited January 2013
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English first
Sacramento, California
Reviewer
3 reviews 3 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
2 helpful votes 2 helpful votes
“Ease of parking & variety of exhibits”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 10, 2013

I liked how the museum is just the right size to traverse with both a young child and an elderly grandmother in tow. My 7-yr-old loved the fact that it "snowed" on him in the Winter exhibit. The aquarium and the penguins entertained all of us. We wished there were more butterflies (and variety of) in the rain forest although the ones there were beautiful. There was definitely a variety of food selection in the cafe. Overall an educational and enjoyable visit with my family.

Visited December 2012
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Seattle
2 reviews
Reviews in 2 cities Reviews in 2 cities
3 helpful votes 3 helpful votes
“absolutely loved the aquarium and "crocodile"-esque animals”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed January 10, 2013

I've been to museums, aqariums, and I even volunteer at a zoo, but I was enthralled by how unique the animals at the academy are. It seemed like you were immersed in their world and a part of something prehistoric at the same time. Of course it seemed like everyone in San Francisco was there at the same time to admire them as well.

Visited December 2012
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Adelaide
Top Contributor
78 reviews 78 reviews
15 attraction reviews
Reviews in 32 cities Reviews in 32 cities
46 helpful votes 46 helpful votes
“Earthquake”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 10, 2013

The earthquake simulation and the planetarium show were both outstanding experiences for those of us not from earthquake prone areas. The whole experience of practical science was a wonderful opportunity for us and our 8 year old daughter. it is all very well organized and accessible to everyone.

Visited December 2012
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Atwater, California
Top Contributor
92 reviews 92 reviews
37 attraction reviews
Reviews in 19 cities Reviews in 19 cities
34 helpful votes 34 helpful votes
“Great stop for kids and adults”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed January 10, 2013

This is a great way to spend a day in San Francisco. This is in the middle of Golden Gate park and offers lots of different exhibits from an aquarium to a tropical rain forest, to science center activities for every age. They also have an excellent cafeteria for lunch with exotic and American foods.

Visited July 2012
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