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California Academy of Sciences General Admission

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Don't miss the African penguins (and 38,000 other live animals) at the California Academy of Sciences in the heart of Golden Gate Park - the must-see attraction in San Francisco!


Skip the ticket buying lines and receive preferred entry!

The world's only aquarium - planetarium - rainforest - living museum.

Don't miss the African penguins (and 38,000 other live animals) at the California Academy of Sciences in the heart of Golden Gate Park - the must-see attraction in San Francisco!

Come and meet the newest addition to the Academy's African penguin colony; a healthy male chick hatched January 10, 2016!

Rocket through the galaxy at the speed of light and journey deep into the Oceans of the World as the Academy boldly brings 'life to life'. Come face to face with snakes and piranhas, meet Claude the Albino Alligator and hang out with Pierre, Howard, Ocio and the rest of the South African Penguin colony. Stroll through the rainforest dome with its free flying birds and butterflies and become immersed in the rainforests of Borneo, Madagascar, Costa Rica and the flooded Amazon. Discover Borneo bats, chameleons, poison dart frogs, leaf cutter ants, gliders, snakes and so much more.

Visit African hall and notice a small-but-mighty addition to its iconic dioramas. "Selam"; a 3.3 million-year-old Australopithecus afarensis child. She has made her debut in a stunning display that reconstructs both her miniature bipedal frame and the African landscape she called home. In 2006, Dr. Zeray Alemseged, Academy Fellow and former anthropology curator, made an indelible mark in the field of anthropology when he reported finding Selam's nearly complete fossilized remains in his native country of Ethiopia. Known as the “world’s oldest child,” it is the most complete skeleton of a human ancestor discovered to date and represents a major advancement in our understanding of human and pre-human evolution.

Don't miss the latest amazing digital planetarium show taking you on a spectacular journey to the far reaches of the universe (7-10 times a day).

Designed by award winning architect Renzo Piano, the museum under a 2.5 acre living roof will inspire lifelong curiosity for the natural world as you experience the depths of a Philippine coral reef, climb into the canopy of a Costa Rican rainforest and fly to the outer reaches of the Universe.

The 8,000-square-foot Earthquake exhibit features a dramatic, 25-foot-diameter model of the Earth; an earthquake simulator which will transport you back to 5:04 pm on October 17, 1989 - the date and time of the infamous Loma Prieta earthquake; an interactive preparedness game which will help you learn what you can do before, during, and after an earthquake and a new planetarium show taking audiences on a breathtaking tour through space and time, including a re-creation of the San Francisco Quake of 1906.

Operating Hours

Monday to Saturday - 09:30 to 17:00

Sunday - 11:00 to 17:00

Last entrance is 16:30.

Closed on Christmas and Thanksgiving


  • General admission
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California Academy of Sciences General Admission

Available: Daily
Inclusions: General admission
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  • This activity is wheelchair accessible.

  • Children of all ages can participate in this activity.

Required Items to Bring & Attire
  • Printed VELTRA voucher

  • A valid government-issued photo ID

  • Walking shoes

  • Comfortable clothing

  • Camera

  • Sweatshirt / light jacket

Additional Note(s)
  • The activity schedule is subject to change or cancellation.

  • Guests are allowed to bring their own food and drinks, but storage is not provided for any items brought into the facility.

  • Last entry will be 1-hour before the museum closes.

  • The activity provider does not assume any responsibility for your valuables and/or personal belongings.

  • Drinks and meals are available for purchase

  • If you are driving on your own, you will be required to pay a parking fee.

  • You must have a printed copy of your VELTRA voucher to present upon check-in. You will not be able to participate in this activity if you only have a digital copy on your mobile device.

Frequently Asked Questions

Please click HERE to send an inquiry about this activity.

Cancellation Policy

  • Any cancellations made within 10 business days of your activity (after 09:30:00 local time) will be subject to a charge of 100% of the total amount.

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