The Exploratorium science museum, reopened its doors last month at Pier 15 at the Embarcadero. Built of a cost of $300 million, this waterfront facility is three times larger than the original museum located at the Palace of Fine Arts. The 330,000-square foot has more than 600 interactive exhibits offering a great opportunity to interact and learn through playing, touching, exploring and thinking.
This is the perfect place for everybody….from families with children of all ages, teens, parents, grandparents and even your dog! Yes, it is a pet friendly museum!!! They don’t mention it on the website but we saw a few dogs there and we confirmed it with the staff.
The Exploratorium is divided into six different main galleries and each gallery explores a different area. 1) The West Gallery focuses on “human phenomena” and experiment with thoughts, feelings, and social behavior. The popular Tactile Dome, an interactive excursion through total darkness will be open this summer. 2) The Central Gallery focuses on “Seeing & Listening” and experiment with light and vision, sound and hearing, and motion and spatial perception. 3) The East Gallery focuses on “Living Systems,” and investigate the living world.
One of my favorite exhibit in the East Gallery is a large supercomputer placed in a “social” table which shows you microscopy life in the world oceans by placing a lens disc on top of an interactive map “magnifying” the view.
4) The South Gallery “Tinkering” is the gallery that gives you the chance to slow down and make something! Kids were fascinating doing scribbling machines using everyday objects, motors, batteries and wires. 5) The Outdoor Gallery highlights a combination of large and small exhibits, art installations, and public programs. 6) The one new building on the pier is the Bay Observatory Gallery. This all-glass gallery focuses on landscape observation and offers a 360-degree beautiful views of the city and the bay.
It is difficult to see everything in just one day, we actually ended up buying the museum membership and will come back to continue the fun!
There are two dining areas at the museum. The Seismic Joint Café and the SeaGlass Restaurant in the Bay Observatory. You can also bring your own lunch and there are some local vendor food carts on the outdoor plaza.
We really had fun at the Fog Bridge created by Japanese artist Fujiko Nakaya. It is a 150-foot-long pedestrian bridge with high-pressure nozzles that cover the bridge with fog and mist. The fog operates every half hour and you can walk through the fog. We heard the night time lights add a surreal atmosphere to this exhibition.
Location: Pier 15, San Francisco, CA 94111 See in Google Maps >
Hours: Tuesday – Friday – Saturday – Sunday: 10:00 a.m.–5:00 p.m.
Wednesday 10:00 a.m.–10:00 p.m. Thursday 10:00 a.m.–5:00 p.m.; open 6:00 p.m.–10:00 p.m. for ages 18+. Closed Monday except for certain holidays
Admission is $25: Adults (18–64), $19: Youth (6–17), college students, teachers, seniors (65+), people with disabilities. FREE: Children ages 5 and younger and members.
If you live in one of the nine San Francisco Bay Area counties, you qualify for special rates.
Have you been in the Exploratorium? I would like to hear what is your favorite exhibition 🙂