We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.
We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.
The latest reviews. The lowest prices. The perfect place to shop for hotels.

The Exploratorium

Certificate of Excellence
Map
Satellite
Map updates are paused. Zoom in to see updated info.
Reset zoom
Updating Map...
Neighbourhoods
Neighbourhoods
Get directions
Address: Pier 15, on the Embarcadero, San Francisco, CA 94111
Phone Number:
+1 415-528-4444
Website
Today
10:00 - 17:00
Closed now
See all hours
Hours:
Tue - Sun 10:00 - 17:00
Thu 18:00 - 22:00
Recommended length of visit: 2-3 hours
Fee: Yes
Description:

Experience the Exploratorium, a hands-on museum of science, art, and human...

Experience the Exploratorium, a hands-on museum of science, art, and human perception that's dedicated to the excitement of experimentation, the pleasure of discovery, and the power of play. Indulge your curiosity in over 600 exhibits-indoors and out-and explore eye-opening ways to understand the world around you. Don't miss the iconic Tactile Dome, where you can take an interactive excursion in total darkness using your sense of touch as your only guide (be sure to make a reservation in advance). There's also a unique museum store plus two delicious places to eat: the SeaGlass restaurant, which has a stunning Bay view, and the Seismic Joint cafe. Located at Pier 15 along San Francisco's Embarcadero between Pier 39 and the Ferry Building, the Exploratorium is easy to get to by public transportation (the F-Market & Wharves Historic Streetcar stops out front and it's a ten-minute walk from BART or MUNI) plus there's parking nearby. Tickets are available online (recommended) or at the door.

read more
Book In Advance
More Info
US$ 29.95*
and up
Exploratorium General Admission
More Info
US$ 89.00*
and up
Viator Exclusive: San Francisco Hop-on Hop-off Plus Bike & Bay Cruise
More Info
US$ 89.00*
and up
San Francisco CityPASS

TripAdvisor Reviewer Highlights

Read all 2,623 reviews
Visitor rating
  • 1466
    Excellent
  • 458
    Very good
  • 115
    Average
  • 24
    Poor
  • 5
    Terrible
So many great things to touch and see

I love science centers and usually only go with my kids. This was a couples trip for my husband and I but we thought why not. We came by for a few hours and thoroughly enjoyed... read more

Reviewed 2 days ago
helena218
,
Port Alberni, Canada
via mobile
Add Photo Write a Review
Turn Your Opinions into Points!
Turn your opinions into JPMiles
Turn your opinions into PAYBACK Points
*You can enroll in only one programme at a time to earn rewards for reviews.
JPMiles / Payback Arrow
JPMiles / PAYBACK
50

2,623 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

Traveller rating
Traveller type
Time of year
Language
  • More
Showing 2,068: English reviews
Port Alberni, Canada
Level Contributor
322 reviews
124 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 65 helpful votes
Reviewed 2 days ago NEW via mobile

I love science centers and usually only go with my kids. This was a couples trip for my husband and I but we thought why not. We came by for a few hours and thoroughly enjoyed our experience. Lots of great things to learn and test out. Probably best for a family with kids as there are tons of kids... More 

Helpful?
Thank helena218
Galway, Ireland
Level Contributor
54 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
Reviewed 2 days ago NEW

This is expensive but there is plenty to do, particularly for kids who are interested in learning about basic science in an interactive way. It is probably best for older children (9+).

Helpful?
Thank Rónán K
Anzegem, Belgium
Level Contributor
77 reviews
42 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 19 helpful votes
Reviewed 4 days ago NEW via mobile

Loved this 'museum' a whole lotta things to see and do! Great for kids but equally as great for adults! Too many things to sum up how cool it all was!

Helpful?
Thank k d
Marietta, Ga.
Level Contributor
76 reviews
23 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 26 helpful votes
Reviewed 4 days ago NEW

The grandchildren had a good time, but it was overrun with school groups. It was difficult to really explore all there was to offer. The facility is large with activities for all interests.

Helpful?
Thank Weezer55
Sedona, Arizona
Level Contributor
55 reviews
10 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
Reviewed 1 week ago NEW via mobile

We loved this place! Bring as little as possible so you can give everything to each challenge, obstacle or learning opportunity. Prepare to spend a full day here!

Helpful?
1 Thank Kegn M
Level Contributor
3 reviews
Reviewed 1 week ago

We hadn't been here in over 10 years. The new location is great since it's walking distance to Fisherman's Wharf. There are so many more exhibits and the facility doesn't feel as crammed as it used to. Also, there are plenty of spots for adults to rest while the kids explore.

Helpful?
Thank Lori M
Ogden, UT
Level Contributor
104 reviews
55 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 24 helpful votes
Reviewed 1 week ago via mobile

This place is so much fun. I love how they encourage you to play with the exhibits and every one is not just educational but also fun. This is a great place to spend an afternoon, especially with kids.

Helpful?
Thank RSL_Donk
Brooklyn, New York
Level Contributor
13 reviews
8 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 5 helpful votes
Reviewed 1 week ago

We visit a science museum in pretty much every city in every country we go to! This one did not disappoint. I only wish we had gone earlier in the day to spend more time there. It was very interesting and the staff is SUPER engaging. We love science museums and allows for a break from constant sightseeing when on... More 

Helpful?
Thank bklyngirly
Melbourne, Australia
Level Contributor
172 reviews
43 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 46 helpful votes
Reviewed 1 week ago

I took my 13 year daughter to this attraction. We had a good time. However, if anything it reinforced her Science classes that she has studied from Grade 5-8. Some further challenging activities that extend students would be great!

Helpful?
Thank EverydayMum
Hammond, Louisiana
Level Contributor
15 reviews
10 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed 1 week ago

A wonderful way to learn scientific principles for kids and adults. You can spend hours in this museum although you will probably max out at 2-3 hours. Definitely see the city's major landmarks made entirely out of toothpicks. Impressive. There is an open food court inside the museum with a variety of foods to choose from and a pasta restaurant... More 

Helpful?
1 Thank candystripe65

Travellers who viewed The Exploratorium also viewed

 

Been to The Exploratorium? Share your experiences!

Turn Your Opinions into Points!
Turn your opinions into JPMiles
Turn your opinions into PAYBACK Points
*You can enroll in only one programme at a time to earn rewards for reviews.
JPMiles / PAYBACK
50
JPMiles / Payback Arrow
Write a Review Add Photos & Videos

Is This Your TripAdvisor Listing?

Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.

Claim Your Listing

Questions & Answers

Here's what previous visitors have asked, with answers from representatives of The Exploratorium and other visitors
10 questions
Ask a question
Vancouver, Canada
9 months ago
Azusa, California
1 month ago
Houston, Texas
10 months ago
6 months ago

See all questions (10)

Questions? Get answers from The Exploratorium staff and past visitors.
Posting guidelines
Typical questions asked:
  • Do I have to buy a ticket for my infant?
  • How do I get there using public transportation?
  • Is there a restaurant or café onsite?