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California Academy of Sciences

Museums, Science and technology Golden Gate Park
4 out of 5 stars
California Academy of Sciences (Photograph: Tim Griffith)
Photograph: Tim GriffithCalifornia Academy of Sciences
California Academy of Sciences (Photograph: Tim Griffith)
Photograph: Tim GriffithCalifornia Academy of Sciences San Francisco, California Architect: Renzo Piano Building Workshop
California Academy of Sciences
California Academy of Sciences

Time Out says

4 out of 5 stars

Cal Academy is an aquarium, planetarium, rainforest, and natural history museum wrapped into one. Though it’s considered California’s oldest museum—originally established in 1853—it has morphed over time to remain a vital, vibrant space. In all, the 400,000-square-foot building contains over 26 million specimens. The Kimball Natural History Museum is perhaps best known for the Africa Hall, where taxidermied animals are displayed behind glass, while the Project Lab showcases real scientists doing research in public view. The Morrison Planetarium features the world’s largest completely digital planetarium dome, measuring 90 feet in diameter. You can meander among the butterflies, marine life, and birds of the rainforest within a humid, 90-foot glass dome. And the impressive Steinhart Aquarium includes exhibits of coral reef, tidepool, and swamp habitats, as well as a colony of African penguins. The museum also has one of the most striking rooftops in the city, covered in seven rolling hills and home to an estimated 1.7 million plants.


Address: Golden Gate Park
55 Concourse Dr
San Francisco
Cross street: at Golden Gate Park
Transport: Bus 5, 16X, 44, 71
Price: $$
Opening hours: Mon–Sat 9:30am–5pm; Sun 11am–5pm
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