California Academy of Sciences

55 Music Concourse Drive, San Francisco
California, United States
Email: info@calacademy.org
Phone: +1 (415) 379-8000
Website: https://www.calacademy.org/
closed on: Open daily except Thanksgiving and Christmas day
Museum Type: Anthropology / ethnography, Natural history

Founded in 1853, the California Academy of Sciences in San Francisco is one of the largest and most renowned scientific museums in the world, it includes an aquarium, a natural history museum, a rainforest reconstruction, and a planetarium.

Located in Golden Gate Park, the museum’s building was completely rebuilt in 2008, after the Loma Prieta earthquake badly damaged the old structure.
With a total floor area of 410,000 square feet and a construction cost of nearly half a billion dollars, the new building, designed by Italian architect Renzo Piano and famous for its wavy green roof, was, at the time of completion, one of the largest and most advanced environmentally-sustainable buildings in the world.

California Academy Sciences Renzo Piano cross-section

California Academy Sciences San Francisco Renzo Piano living roof

California Academy Sciences San Francisco Renzo Piano 03

California Academy Sciences San Francisco T-Rex entrance lobby

California Academy of science, section, the exterior of the building, and the museum lobby; images by Renzo Piano Building Workshop, Omar Bárcena, and Remon Rijper

The main mission of the California Academy of Sciences is “to explore, explain, and sustain life on Earth”. As anticipated, the museum encompasses four sections: the Steinhart Aquarium, the Morrison Planetarium, the Osher Rainforest, and the Kimball Natural History Museum.

Steinhart Aquarium
With about 40,000 living animals belonging to 900 species, the Steinhart Aquarium is one of the largest and most diverse in the United States; it comprises pools, tanks, and reconstructions dedicated to marine flora and fauna of California; to sharks, to African penguins; to the coral reefs of the Philippines; to alligators; to sea turtles; and galleries featuring various types of salt and fresh water animals, such as the spectacular “Water Planet” gallery.

California Academy Sciences San Francisco Steinhart Aquarium 01

California Academy Sciences San Francisco Steinhart Aquarium 02

California-Academy-Sciences-San-Francisco-sea-urchin

Steinhart Aquarium, photos by Gary Stevens, Hillary Johnson, and Sathish J

Osher Rainforest
Housed under a large glass dome with controlled temperature and humidity, the Osher Rainforest is a reconstruction of four different tropical ecosystems: Bornean, Madagascan, Costa Rican, and Amazonian forests, complete with their typical flora and fauna.

California Academy Sciences San Francisco Osher Rainforest

Osher Rainforest, photo by California Academy of Sciences

Morrison Planetarium
One of the most technologically-advanced planetariums in the world, the Morrison Planetarium features a large domed screen, 75 feet across, on which a large scientifically-accurate reconstruction of the universe is projected.

California Academy Sciences San Francisco Morrison Planetarium

Morrison Planetarium, photo by momboleum

Kimball Natural History Museum
Comprising both specimens and interactive exhibits, the vast permanent exhibition of the Kimball Natural History Museum is divided into sections covering various themes related to nature and science: from genetics to zoology, from paleontology to Darwin’s theory of evolution, from anthropology to Earth science and geology.

The California Academy of Sciences also organizes temporary exhibitions, lectures, workshops, educational classes, and special events.

California Academy Sciences San Francisco Kimball Natural History Museum 02

California Academy Sciences San Francisco Kimball Natural History Museum 01

California Academy Sciences San Francisco Kimball Natural History Museum 03

Kimball Natural History Museum, photos by California Academy of Sciences and by Rie H

Cover image by newformula

California Academy Sciences San Francisco Renzo Piano 02

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copyright Inexhibit 2019 - ISSN: 2283-5474