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“amazing museum!”

California Academy of Sciences
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$35.95*
and up
California Academy of Sciences General Admission Ticket
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$60.90*
and up
California Academy of Sciences Behind-the-Scenes Tour
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$15.00*
and up
California Academy of Sciences NightLife
Ranked #14 of 554 things to do in San Francisco
Certificate of Excellence
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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 older children, Activities for young children
Reviewed January 21, 2013

This museum was outstanding! granted, we are science geeks, but this place has a floor-to-ceiling rain forest exhibit, a walk-through aquarium, and really interesting planetarium show all under one roof. We were a little taken aback by the price of tickets during the day ($30 entrance!!) but luckily, we checked the reviews and got the best deal in town: if you visit the museum Thurs night, its open 6-10, and entrance is $12! the museum opens up for adults, where they have live music, bars, and pop-up galleries of local artists. the best part, other than the price, was there were no kids to dodge.
if your gonna come to the museum, definitely come Thurs night (buy tickets in advance, bec the place sells out)!

1  Thank cliebstok
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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3,163 - 3,167 of 4,995 reviews

Reviewed January 20, 2013

All age kids may enjoy, but this is more to smal (up to 12) ... Invest at least 4 hours to see everything. Parking may be expensive. Try the road after museum, turbina rigth. There is free parking areas on both slides of the Street and some walking wars trough garden back to museum.

1  Thank Marcos P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 17, 2013

When the admission charge is a small fortune, you expect a lot, and we were a little disappointed. The planetarium show on earthquakes was poorly done - a real missed opportunity. The aquarium was better, though, if you don't expect a world-class stand-alone one. There's lots of other good things but not much that is great. Maybe our visit suffered from having first gone to the de Young across the way, which was so amazing that this museum couldn't quite live up to it.

Thank NJChisoxFan
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 17, 2013

We visited the museum with our 3year old and it was an excellent place to visit. There are loads of touchy feely things for the kids including touch pools at the aquarium, bones at the reptiles, butterflies in the tropical dome and reactive lights with moving bugs under your feet! It's a really got everything under one roof. We saw penguins being fed and then went under water to see sea life and then were reading about the Galapagos turtles and on to a tropical rain forest enclosed in a dome. There is also an earthquake simulator which looked great but we didn't get time to go. There is also a small kiddies room we didn't get a chance to visit where they have specific activities for very young kids. You need at least 3-4 hours to make it worth your while paying the entrance fee and to give yourself enough time to see everything.

Thank travelvicks
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed January 16, 2013

My son recommended to spend the day at the California Academy of Sciences, and we were so glad we did. We took the grandkids, my son and an exchange student. All of us found things to enjoy. Loved the African animal exhibit...was even great for my African student who had not seen some species of animals while living in Africa. The aquarium, was spectacular...even though it was a busy vacation day so lots of people were milling about. The planetarium was amazing and the Earthquake exhibit rocked! We loved the simlated Rain Forrest as well. Everything was there under one roof. Not too big to enjoy everything in one day with kids. I can't wait to return. Also a note, the cafe was one of the best I have ever been to. I am so glad they didn't just settle for run-of-the-mill foods, but put together eclectic stations where you could satisfy just about any palate. I give their cafe a five star for both concept and delivery of fresh food!

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

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