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“Amazing museum FOR FREE!”

North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences
Ranked #1 of 155 things to do in Raleigh
Certificate of Excellence
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Owner description: The Southeast's largest natural history museum features dinosaurs, whale skeletons, live animals, walk-through dioramas, special exhibits, hands-on science education and accessible scientists. IMLS National Medal Finalist, 2014.
Reviewed August 8, 2013

This is a fantastic natural science museum - I went with my mother-in-law, husband and 4-year-old brother-in-law (ha!) and we were all very impressed. I can't believe it's free, there are very cool specimens on exhibit (the sea and dinosaur exhibits are especially impressive) and it's a large, interactive museum. Definitely a great way to spend several hours on a hot day. Highly recommended! Can't wait to go back and explore more and check out the 3-D theater.

Thank Rachel L
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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1,363 - 1,367 of 1,831 reviews

Reviewed August 7, 2013

Free and full of amazing information. We loved it. The displays were incredible, I especially loved the time period between the 40-50's. You won't be disappointed in this visit.

Thank Nnella
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 5, 2013

this is the kind of place that they dont do diffrernt every time you go because it never changes i went with cousins and i was drending takeing them ther because once is ebough twice or more it gets boring

Thank Ainsley N
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 5, 2013

The Museum of Natural Sciences opened a new wing back in April 2012, and this was my first chance to see it.

In the older part of the museum, you can learn about North Carolina's climate, flora and fauna, but the exhibits are a bit older and some of them seem a bit tired. If you want to show your children (or learn for yourself) about current science, definitely visit the Nature Research Center. Here, the exhibits showcase research being done at area universities and institutes. There are plenty of interactive parts for people of all ages. In some of the labs, you can go in and do little hands-on experiments. Others use computer visualizations. For example, in one visualization, you experiment with measures to address climate change and see which actions have the biggest impact on reducing carbon emissions. In another, you can practice predicting the weather, using a simulation and information about meteorology.

This wing makes this the best science museum I've been to--so much more up-to-date and interactive than others I've visited. If you want to see scientists in action, a weekday would be best. We visited on a Sunday and many of the research labs were closed. I'd definitely go back another day to observe!

As others have pointed out, the best part is that this museum is completely free, with free parking right next door.

Thank Jordynn J
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed August 4, 2013

This is a gem in downtown Raleigh. It is a free admission museum with the exception of 3D movies yo can pay to see. It covers North Carolina's geographical areas, has live insects, snakes, frogs, fish. All housed in eye catching exhibits. You can attend a brief lecture and touch some interesting animals, and in their newer second building, see numerous specimens up close. Their butterfly area is great, and a Three toed Sloth is in residence there also. We enjoyed their cafe which sells wraps, both with meat or vegetarian.

Thank EZ4UTC
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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