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“A must see!”

Beaty Biodiversity Museum
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Independent Bike Tour of Vancouver
Ranked #83 of 359 things to do in Vancouver
Certificate of Excellence
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Reviewed August 4, 2013

We loved this museum! A family of 5 with 2 adults and 3 children (aged 13,8,6) came out of this exhibit with excitement on our brains!
As we entered the "library lobby" area we were pleased to find a friendly host that gave us an overview of the magnificent blue whale skeleton hanging above our heads with hands on experiences to go along with the information.
We had the opportunity to follow the group receiving a complimentary tour but decided to walk through the aisles on our own. Every aisle was full of amazing specimens that every one of us were thrilled to find.
A definite stop especially with a walk along the UBC grounds which are beautiful.

1  Thank Amanda P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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63 - 67 of 82 reviews

Reviewed July 29, 2013

The Beaty Biodiversity Museum at the University of British Columbia is impressive in both its size and scope. There are over 2 million specimens on display in this ultra modern 20,000 square foot facility.In an effort to find interesting "indoor things" to do during the long rainy season, I have taken the opportunity to explore the museum’s impressive collections on several occasions. Its dimly lit catacombs are jam packed with fascinating exhibits for the "natural history" buff. This being said, I can easily see how other reviewers might think it’s a tad dry for the average tourist. It’s true. It's a little dry, but The Beaty is not billed as a “fun filled thrill ride”, it’s a museum. So, come prepared to look at natural history exhibits. If that isn’t really your thing, you’ll be bored, save your money.
Just so you know, The Beaty has more than a few skeletons and taxidermied animals on display. I have seen a few toddlers who did not seem to appreciate the wide array of skeletal animals, skulls, and assorted stuffed critters. Some didn’t seem overly fond of the mounted insects, especially the spiders.
The showpiece of the museum is the entire skeleton of a 100-foot long blue whale, which is suspended on thin cables from the atriums high glass ceiling. It appears to float in mid air. It’s a pretty cool effect I must admit. I will post some pics, but it’s something you have to see to really appreciate
Since I am in no way qualified to accurately describe the precise contents of the various exhibits, you should consult their website for the exact details.

I’d like to add that if you are already planning to visit the Beaty Museum or UBC’s Point Grey campus, be sure to take in the UBC Museum of Anthropology while you’re there. It’s only a 10-minute walk across the campus and it’s well worth a visit. The collection of West Coast First Nations art is arguably one of the most famous in the world. Don’t miss it. Here is a link to their website as well.
I enjoyed my visits to both these museums and can personally recommend them.
Detailed information about The Beaty Biodiversity Museum and the MOA is available on their websites

3  Thank VancouverRik
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed July 24, 2013

This museum doesn't go in for glitzy interactive edutainment. Instead, it's almost a combination research facility and museum featuring rows and rows (quite literally) of specimens that convey the diversity of life on earth about as well as any museum I have seen. Yes, there is excellent textual exposition if you want it, and a few opportunities to pull out drawers and see "extra stuff" but by and large you wander through the rows and marvel at species ranging from slime molds to porcupines. Another plus are the expert guides who, if you ask, are eager to provide more detail on issues of interest.

My teenagers found it perhaps a little underwhelming -- it is, as I say, more of an education-oriented museum than many modern counterparts -- but for someone with an interest in evolution and biology, it is hard to do better.

One minus. We couldn't find nearby parking. One positive. The grounds of UBC are gorgeous so wandering the campus to find the museum is a wonderful activity in and of itself.

1  Thank mathlawguy
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 25, 2013

The big blue whale skeleton inside the entrance hall is very impressive, and the explanatory signage is excellent.
The lower part of the museum is arranged in long rows of storage cabinets and every few metres you are given a chance to peek through the glass into a compartment. Items are identified, but signage is minimal. You are viewing specimens, not items arranged for museum display.
We enjoyed the mammals and the birds, but were not as engaged by the insects or the fish. The antlers were interesting.

Families with younger children were busily making hats with feathers and ears, etc. at the far end of the museum. There is also a reading/rest area.

All the staff and volunteers we had interactions with were pleasant and knowledgeable. Prices in the gift shop are quite reasonable, especially on the small and medium-sized animal puppets and stuffed toys.

There are several videos (included in entrance fee) that show throughout the day, but the main film is the 45minute Discovery presentation "Raising Big Blue". If you really want to see the film, I would suggest checking their website for the show times and plan your visit accordingly.

ps. If the whale is all that you really want to see, you can do so without paying admission, but then placing a small donation in the box in the gift shop might be appropriate.

Thank Marcia M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed February 15, 2013

Located on the grounds of the University of British Columbia, this place has an excellent zoological and botanical collection... but unless you like looking at endless rows of specimen bottles on the lower floors, I'd suggest the average tourist save their cash for something else.

Of note is the huge blue whale skeleton running almost the entire length of the first floor.

Take note that the above rating (2 stars) was made under the concept of this center as a tourist destination (which is just an incidental, but not primary purpose of this institution). As a research center, this place should get all five stars.

Thank Nurikabe_12
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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