Museum of Natural History
Museum of Natural History
3.5
8:00 AM - 4:00 PM
Monday
8:00 AM - 4:00 PM
Tuesday
8:00 AM - 4:00 PM
Wednesday
8:00 AM - 4:00 PM
Thursday
8:00 AM - 4:00 PM
Friday
8:00 AM - 4:00 PM
Saturday
8:00 AM - 4:00 PM
Sunday
8:00 AM - 4:00 PM
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Detailed Reviews: Reviews order informed by descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as cleanliness, atmosphere, general tips and location information.

3.5
104 reviews
Excellent
26
Very good
38
Average
25
Poor
8
Terrible
7

Madelein R
Pretoria, South Africa59 contributions
Great museum, but lack of secure parking is a problem. Had to stop outside the premises and in front of the museum and when we returned, the police was at our car. A couple of men tried to steal the car, but luckily the police was driving by. Had major damage to the door and ignition. Will not ever return there!
Written May 27, 2012
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Jamie W
Johannesburg, South Africa5 contributions
Mar 2014 • Family
A great afternoon out, the building and grounds have been kept in great nick, nice and clean etc. The displays are well laid out but quite dated. The kids really enjoyed it. R20 per adult - great value for money
Written March 22, 2014
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Rahana J
Johannesburg, South Africa55 contributions
Apr 2013 • Family
Great building,clean inside & out. Exhibits nicely displayed just dont like stuffed animals,plenty of these! A museum of this stature should have a lot more to offer.Ok to incorporate with other visits in the area. Skipped discovery centre.Entrance fee R20.00 per person. Parking will definitely be an issue on a weekday.
Written April 7, 2013
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Amdutt P
Midrand, South Africa1 contribution
Oct 2013 • Family
There is a syndicate operating at the museum. I was mugged today at the museum on the museum premises!, i had my two kids with me. The syndicate works as follows :
1) first a person asks if he can take a photo and charges R20. Sound totally ligitimate and he even produces the photo.
2) When he stops you, there are a few people out the museum that watch you.
3) As you walk around the grounds of the museum, there is a lady that follows you around and comes very close to you to check your jewellery and personal belongings
4) When we came out of the museum, as i just finished paying the guys for the foto one guy walks past me and the other comes close behind him and tries to ruffle me. The guy who goes behind you then pushes me forward and puts his hand and cuts my chain out. and then they all scatter in different directions
5) The museum has a side entrance which makes an easy getaway.
6) They thrive on people with children as they know you are going to be preoccupied assisting small children.
7) Best of all of this is i parked directly outside the museum - can't get any closer than that.

WILL NEVER RETURN TO THE MUSEUM WHICH IS SUCH A PITY.
THE PLACE IS UNSAFE AND SO IF PRETORIA IN GENERAL AND WOULD NOT RECOMMEND TOURISTS AND VISITORS. UNLESS YOU ARE PREPARED FOR BEING MUGGED AND WOULD LIKE TO EXPERIENCE SOMETHING LIKE THAT AND IF YOU WANT YOUR KIDS TRAUMATISED, THEN BY ALL MEANS DO THAT AT YOUR OWN PERIL.
Written October 19, 2013
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Talitasimone
Durban, South Africa32 contributions
Nov 2017 • Friends
have yet to discover a more disappointing and more neglected and archaic museum and if i could give it no stars I would. I see some good reviews here and I can only assume they were done by people not accustomed to decent museums. This museum is in bad shape and this is why:
1. Incredibly unfriendly and unenthusiastic staff (and who can blame them really)
2. The displays (display signs as well as specimen) are disintegrating in many instances. I'm sure the last upgrade must've taken place in the 60s if not earlier.
3. Inaccuracy : to only mention 2- The visual display of Jupiter is shocking. Had I not known that it should be Jupiter I might've mistaken it for a mythical planet from someone's imagination.- The button spider is displayed as the Black Widow.....these two spiders ....although family....are not the same spider at all. Laymen mistakes in a museum.....appalling!

Do not waste time or money on this excuse for a museum. Rather save money and visit the Natural science museum in the Cape....where at least they've made an continuous effort.
Written November 12, 2017
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Cedric K
London, UK11 contributions
Feb 2012 • Solo
Now called the Ditsong National Museum of Natural History (changing names of things is all well and good so long as it isn't just because politicians find it hard to make any real difference). Very good collections and displays of African mammals and reptiles and birds and a good geology section, and good annotations, so recommended before a safari. As other reviewers say though, it could do with a bit of investment and a lick of paint. When I was there, there was a cafe that was hard to find because of the building works still closing one wing, and any museum of that size in Britain would have a good shop.
Written July 24, 2012
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

1Jack_Spat
New Hampshire116 contributions
Dec 2018 • Solo
Broken displays, outdated information, and a weird smell this place has all the attributes for a museum dying a slow death. They shuttered their shop, which is another sign of a museum on the way out. Also, outside is not a safe location there was a stabbing the day I was there.
Written December 15, 2018
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

dbdasilva1
Ansiao, Portugal8 contributions
Jan 2017 • Family
As a father of a 3yo dinosaur enthusiast and lover of all things fossils this was a great experience shared with laughter and smiles, never to forget.

As someone who was taken to this museum by his father a few times at least 24-25 years ago this was also sad to see. The structure and gardens are beautiful with grand architecture you'd expect from any world class history museum, the stone walls are a reminder of the days quality meant something.
Inside was no different as you enter an impressive atrium, unfortunately as you enter the exhibitions you soon realize that nothing has changed, possibly not even the carpets and definitely none of the exhibits.

Displays are extensive and informative, from dinosaurs, fish and birds to mammals and butterflies it's all housed in this old time wonder.

My son was always happy and couldn't be bothered if things were dusty and forgotten, he wouldn't know it any differently and to see the constant intrique and happiness on his face was enough for me to love this place.

I am grateful that we have such a marvel (albeit run down one) in our very own city and was glad to be able to take my son there as my father took me years before.

The museum is timeless and I can just hope that one day it will receive an "update"

Verdict: still a must see in Pretoria

DBS
Written January 28, 2017
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

gmonov1
11 contributions
I wish I was eloquent and articulate enough to describe how bad this place is, all I can say is it's a total waste of time.
The oldest thing on display is probably the museum itself. From the outside it looks really nice and interesting, but once inside, it's extremely dated, displays are falling apart and a lot of them don't even make sense.
Instead, why not spend the 90 minutes or so it would take you to walk around this 'museum' and go across the road and watch the grass grow.
Written February 5, 2015
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

RobertArcher
Pretoria, South Africa1 contribution
Jun 2014 • Couples
Went to see the Wildlife Photographer of the year. But lighting and layout is poor and uneven. Impossible to read text for each photo. This marred a fabulous international exhibition.

Exhibitions are very old and not maintained. Missing or dead lights. Birds and mammals exhibitions are exactly as it was 25 years ago when a regular visitor. The only changes are gaping holes or text were objects were. Strange objects on floor to cover electricity points. No Sotho text whatsoever! No safe parking available. Had window smashed!
Written June 14, 2014
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

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Museum of Natural History (Pretoria) - All You Need to Know BEFORE You Go

Frequently Asked Questions about Museum of Natural History

Museum of Natural History is open:
  • Sun - Sat 8:00 AM - 4:00 PM