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“Lovely butterfly garden and some interesting exhibits”

National Museum (Museo Nacional)
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Discover Costa Rica's Capital City and Museums
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Private San Jose City Tour with Lunch
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San Jose Walking Tour including Central Market and Lunch
Ranked #5 of 119 things to do in San Jose
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Owner description: This 19th-century building contains a well-organized exhibits on Costa Rica's history and culture.
Reading, England, United Kingdom
Level 3 Contributor
22 reviews
7 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
“Lovely butterfly garden and some interesting exhibits”
Reviewed January 2, 2013

You walk in through the butterfly garden which is lovely. A good chance to see the elusive morpho butterfly!
They had a temporary exhibition on old maps from when central America was being explored which was very interesting.
The pre-columbian bit was also very good.
Takes about an hour to do it all.
Costs $8 for an adult ticket

Visited December 2012
Thank Emily G
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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960 reviews from our community

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Comox, Canada
Level 3 Contributor
20 reviews
6 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 9 helpful votes
“A National Treasure”
Reviewed December 17, 2012

You can learn more about Costa Rican culture in one hour than you will in days of travelling around the country. All the history is right here. You can even see the Nobel Peace Prize medal. It's all there.

Visited October 2012
Thank nelliebj
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve, Costa Rica
Level 4 Contributor
34 reviews
18 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 29 helpful votes
“Beautiful butterfly garden and interesting displays”
Reviewed December 14, 2012

The entrance is so great that you walk through the butterfly gardens. I've also been to the infamous butterfly garden at Monteverde, paying $12, which was not even half as beautiful as this one.
The displays are interesting and well organized, where i could't get away from the "maps" section for hours.

Visited November 2012
Thank begumgur
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Natick, Massachusetts
Level 2 Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“Field Trip study abroad”
Reviewed November 21, 2012

The museum was awesome, a butterfly garden right when you enter, and multiple exhibits with one focused on gold, one focused on indiginous peoples, one focused on the history of Costa Rica, and more on the maps and conquistadors that came to the new world. There was also a really great exhibit about Haiti with fantastic photographs and descriptions all in Spanish, great practice for me. Also, the museum itself is a piece of history, as it was the military fort where Costa Rica used to have its army, which is now abolished. Great museum, well tended, and right in San Jose close to a local market and cheap pizza place.

Visited November 2012
Thank BJC973
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Spokane, WA
Level 6 Contributor
120 reviews
37 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 59 helpful votes
“Interesting Museum with a great entrance”
Reviewed November 15, 2012

We visited with our two children, ages 6 and 9, and were surprised when they only charged us $16. They did not charge for the children and they accepted US dollars. They do NOT accept credit cards. If you enter through Plaza Democracia, then the first thing you see after paying your admission is a butterfly garden. It is completely covered, which is nice because it was really raining hard, but they do use misters sometimes so we needed our umbrellas anyway.

The permanent exhibits have English translations, but the temporary ones did not. The setting is cool because of the history of the actual building. We also appreciated the courtyard in the center of all the exhibit buildings. Our kids could blow off a little steam between exhibits.

Don't forget about the exhibits you can see by entering the door under the stairs you see when you exit the top of the butterfly garden. We almost missed this entire section because we thought we weren't allowed in there! It is just a cement doorway, and you walk around a couple of corners before entering the exhibit space.

Visited November 2012
1 Thank SpokaneMom
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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