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Wilbur D. May Center
Vacation Travel Guide

Take the whole family on a day of discovery at this museum and botanical garden, where curious artifacts from around the globe bring faraway cultures to life. 

The Wilbur D. May Center consists of two parts: the Wilbur D. May Museum and the Wilbur D. May Arboretum and Botanical Garden. Together they honor the legacy of Wilbur D. May who, through his world travels and adventures, collected thousands of rare and exotic artifacts and brought them back to his home in Reno. Bring the whole family to have fun and learn at this center of intrigue and discovery.

Peruse the weird and wonderful displays in the museum and learn about different cultures from around the world. The unique ethnographic collection includes everything from Japanese swords to artifacts from Egyptian tombs. See African tribal masks, Polynesian carvings, Chinese pottery and European glasswork. Venture into the trophy room of exotic taxidermy, numbering well over 200 pieces.

Travel the world and follow the route the eccentric millionaire took as he traded with locals for art, crafts, weapons and curios. See giant elephant tusks, snuff bottles and even shrunken human heads.

From the museum, head into the Arboretum and Botanical Garden, which stands as a 13-acre (5-hectare) living plant museum. Reno is located between the Sierra Nevada Mountains and the Great Basin Desert and has a very small amount of rainfall. These conditions mean it is difficult for most plants to thrive here. Wander the gardens and discover the hardiest of plants, the only ones that can withstand these extremes. About 4,000 native and non-native plants grow here. Visit the Rock Garden, the Songbird Garden or the Rose Garden or head to the Evans Creek Wetland Area.

The wetlands here are among the only ones in Reno. Stand quietly on the bridge over the creek and look for the 57 different species of birds fluttering through the black willows and cottonwoods.

The Wilbur D. May Center is located inside the Rancho San Rafael Regional Park in Reno. Enter the regional park for free; the museum has an admission fee. Both the museum and the botanical gardens are open during regular park hours. There is a lot next to the center where you can park for free.

Top Hotels Close to Wilbur D. May Center

Silver Legacy Resort  Casino at THE ROW
Silver Legacy Resort Casino at THE ROW
4 out of 5
407 N. Virginia Street, Reno, NV
The price is $59 per night from Apr 13 to Apr 14

Located in Downtown Reno, this hotel is within a 5-minute walk of Reno Events Center and National Bowling Stadium. Reno Aces Ballpark and Nevada Museum of Art ...

4/5Very Good! (4,739 reviews)

"Outstanding service"…"

Reviewed on Apr 12, 2021

Silver Legacy Resort Casino at THE ROW
Murphys Game House!!
Murphys Game House!!
Reno, NV
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Located in the center of Reno, this family-friendly vacation home is within a 10-minute walk of Wilbur D. May Center and University of Nevada-Reno. National ...

4.9/5Exceptional! (10 reviews)
AMAZING!! 110% recommend!!

"Peter's house is, by far, the best I have stayed in. It is absolutely gorgeous. The pictures do NOT do it justice. Peter was the perfect host. He checked in (via text) occasionally to make sure we had everything we needed. We will most definitely be booking it again for our next Reno trip."…"

Reviewed on Mar 16, 2021

Murphys Game House!!
Eldorado Resort Casino at THE ROW
Eldorado Resort Casino at THE ROW
4 out of 5
345 N Virginia St, Reno, NV
The price is $59 per night from Apr 19 to Apr 20

Located in Downtown Reno, this hotel is within a 15-minute walk of National Bowling Stadium, National Automobile Museum, and Nevada Museum of Art. University ...

4/5Very Good! (2,649 reviews)

"My stay here has always been great the staff is great the housekeeping is great everyone is very nice and helpful the amenities could be a little bit more blessing overall spacious beautiful will always come back again and Wi-Fi no issue"…"

Reviewed on Apr 7, 2021

Eldorado Resort Casino at THE ROW
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.

Top Wilbur D. May Center Flight + Hotel Deals

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Best Lodging Options Near Wilbur D. May Center

Silver Legacy Resort  Casino at THE ROW
Silver Legacy Resort Casino at THE ROW
4 out of 5
407 N. Virginia Street, Reno, NV
The price is $59 per night from Apr 13 to Apr 14
Silver Legacy Resort Casino at THE ROW
Murphys Game House!!
Murphys Game House!!
Reno, NV
Murphys Game House!!
Eldorado Resort Casino at THE ROW
Eldorado Resort Casino at THE ROW
4 out of 5
345 N Virginia St, Reno, NV
The price is $59 per night from Apr 19 to Apr 20
Eldorado Resort Casino at THE ROW
Peppermill Resort Spa Casino
Peppermill Resort Spa Casino
4 out of 5
2707 S. Virginia Street, Reno, NV
The price is $46 per night from May 2 to May 3
Peppermill Resort Spa Casino
Grand Sierra Resort and Casino
Grand Sierra Resort and Casino
4 out of 5
2500 E 2nd St, Reno, NV
The price is $69 per night from Apr 13 to Apr 14
Grand Sierra Resort and Casino
Circus Circus Hotel Casino Reno at THE ROW
Circus Circus Hotel Casino Reno at THE ROW
4 out of 5
500 N Sierra St, Reno, NV
The price is $50 per night from Apr 19 to Apr 20
Circus Circus Hotel Casino Reno at THE ROW
Sands Regency Casino Hotel
Sands Regency Casino Hotel
3.5 out of 5
345 N Arlington Ave, Reno, NV
The price is $43 per night from May 9 to May 10
Sands Regency Casino Hotel
Gorgeous Historic Home Within Walking Distance to UNR & Downtown Reno! Sleeps 11
Gorgeous Historic Home Within Walking Distance to UNR & Downtown Reno! Sleeps 11
Reno, NV
Gorgeous Historic Home Within Walking Distance to UNR & Downtown Reno! Sleeps 11
Travelodge by Wyndham Reno Downtown
Travelodge by Wyndham Reno Downtown
2 out of 5
636 N. Virginia St., Reno, NV
The price is $49 per night from Apr 13 to Apr 14
Travelodge by Wyndham Reno Downtown
Lowest nightly price found within the past 24 hours based on a 1 night stay for 2 adults. Prices and availability subject to change. Additional terms may apply.