Beginning of main content
Due to coronavirus (COVID-19) travel advisories, some destinations may be unavailable for certain dates. Find out more.
Due to coronavirus (COVID-19) travel advisories, some destinations may be unavailable for certain dates. Find out more.
Trip Type
Flight 1
Flight 2
Flight 3
Flight 4
Flight 5

Search over 1 million properties and 550 airlines worldwide

Members save 10% more on select hotels, cars, activities and vacation rentals. Sign up.

Free cancellation on most hotels. Because flexibility matters.

California Academy of Sciences

This vast scientific institution is one of the world’s largest museums of natural history.

Founded in 1853, just three years after the Golden State joined the Union, the California Academy of Sciences is now a globally recognized scientific institution. It attracts more than a million visitors each year. This attraction includes an aquarium, a planetarium and a natural history museum.

Significant research into the human sciences takes place behind the doors of the academy. Global experts in botany, anthropology, ornithology, geology and an array of other disciplines work here. Completely rebuilt in 2008, the academy is now a striking attraction and is popular with visitors and locals alike.

Visit the Steinhart Aquarium, which includes a four-story dome developed to capture the climate and biology of the rain forest. Come face-to-face with 38,000 live species from all over the world, from the African penguin to sharks and stingrays.

Marvel at the wonders of the universe in the Morrison Planetarium, a state-of-the-art, all-digital planetarium that gives visitors the most accurate picture of the universe to date.

Head to the Kimball Natural History Museum for a look at exhibits from every corner of the globe. The displays explore the evolution of life on Earth, from prehistory to the present day.

Behind-the-scenes tours around the aquarium and the academy take place daily, including a weekly evening event for those over 21. (For a schedule of times see the website.) Knowledgeable guides help you make the most of your visit. If all of the learning leaves you with an appetite, enjoy a meal at the cosmopolitan Academy Café or the Moss Room.

The California Academy of Sciences stands in the heart of the Golden Gate Park and is easily accessible by public transit, car, bike and shuttle services. Note that the parking lot fills quickly on weekends and holidays.

The academy is open daily except Thanksgiving and Christmas.


Guide to Exploring around California Academy of Sciences


Map

Best Lodging Options Near California Academy of Sciences

See all 1,235 Properties near California Academy of Sciences
Holiday Inn Golden Gateway $129
Holiday Inn Golden Gateway

Holiday Inn Golden Gateway

1500 Van Ness Ave, San Francisco, CA
     
    3.5 out of 5.0 Stars

    Located in Downtown San Francisco, this hotel is within a 5-minute walk of Van Ness Avenue and The Regency Ballroom. San Francisco City Hall and Lombard Street are also within 1 mi (2 km). California St & Van Ness Ave Stop is only a 2-minute walk and California St & Polk St Stop is 2 minutes.

    Stanyan Park Hotel $143
    Stanyan Park Hotel

    Stanyan Park Hotel

    750 Stanyan Street, San Francisco, CA
       
      3.0 out of 5.0 Stars

      Located in Haight-Ashbury, this hotel is within a 10-minute walk of Golden Gate Park and University of California San Francisco. University of San Francisco and Palace of Fine Arts are also within 3 mi (5 km). Carl St & Stanyan St Stop is only a 4-minute walk and Carl Street & Cole Street Station is 7 minutes.

      Geary Parkway Motel $80
      Geary Parkway Motel

      Geary Parkway Motel

      4750 Geary Blvd, Richmond District, San Francisco, CA
         
        2.0 out of 5.0 Stars

        Located in Richmond District, this motel is within 1 mi (2 km) of Steinhart Aquarium, Golden Gate Park, and California Academy of Sciences. University of San Francisco and De Young Museum are also within 1 mi (2 km). Irving St & 9th Ave Stop is 27 minutes by foot and Irving St & 8th Ave Stop is 28 minutes.

        Laurel Inn, a Joie de Vivre Boutique Hotel $116
        Laurel Inn, a Joie de Vivre Boutique Hotel

        Laurel Inn, a Joie de Vivre Boutique Hotel

        444 Presidio Ave, San Francisco, CA
           
          3.0 out of 5.0 Stars

          Located in Western Addition, this hotel is within a 15-minute walk of Kaiser Permanente Medical Center and University of San Francisco. Palace of Fine Arts and Golden Gate Park are also within 2 mi (3 km). California St & Van Ness Ave Stop is 29 minutes by foot.