55 Music Concourse Dr.
Golden Gate Park
San Francisco CA
94118
415.379.8000
Regular Hours:

Daily

9:30 am – 5:00 pm

Sunday

11:00 am – 5:00 pm
Members' Hours:

Tuesday

8:30 – 9:30 am

Sunday

10:00 – 11:00 am
Closures
Notices

The Academy will be closed on Thanksgiving and Christmas Day.

The Academy will be closing at 3:00 pm on 4/24. We apologize for any inconvenience.

The Academy’s rainforest exhibit will be closed 5/6–5/7 for routine maintenance. We apologize for any inconvenience.

 

Early Explorers Cove

The Early Explorers Cove is an activity area for children 0-5 years and their adult friends.

Academy

Pretend to be an Academy scientist on a voyage to the Galapagos Islands in 1905. Navigate the schooner, examine specimens, and prepare a lunch for your crew-mates in our child-sized model of the research schooner Academy.

Garden Shed

Be green and tend to the garden in the Early Explorers Cove! Put on some gloves and plant some vegetables!

California Backyard

Go on an expedition and see what animals you can find hiding in their burrows! Grab some binoculars and discover all the animals in our California mural.

Infant Tide Pool

Infants can comfortably explore their surroundings and discover themselves along the mirror waves in the Tidal Pool.

Coral Reef

Explore the under water mural to see what oceanic animal you can find hiding in the coral reefs. Develop your fine motor skills at our manipulative table.

Farmers Market

Pick up a reusable tote bag and shop in our mini farmers market for some seasonal items. Can you identify what’s for sale today?

Toddler Treks

Select Tuesdays and Thursdays at 11:00am, meets at the pendulum

A caregiver/child participatory program designed especially for children ages 18-36 months. Children and adults participate together during group activities as we learn about new animals. Each month features a different animal theme.

Space is limited, reservations are required: $5 per member child; $7 per non-member child; free to attending adults with general admission. Museum general admission is free for children ages 3 and under. Buy a ticket online or over the phone at 415-379-8000.

Little Naturalists

Wednesdays at 9:45am in the Naturalist Center

Hands-on programs for children ages 3-5, presented in the Naturalist Center. Every week features a unique theme. Space is limited, reservations are required: $5 per member child; $7 per non-member child; free to attending adults with general admission. Buy a Member or Non-Member ticket online or over the phone at 800-794-7576.

Saturday Safari

Saturdays at 11:00am in African Hall, under the leopard tree

Join us for an imaginary expedition around the corner or around the world! We will begin by using maps to chart our trip, and then be transported via stories, specimens, props, songs and dance. All ages are welcome! Free with general admission. Adult supervision required.

Junior Academy

Junior Academy programs are designed to engage children age 5 to 11 and their families. We invite you to join us for hands-on, science based activities. Watch for a new program to be added in the spring of 2014!

Family Nature Crafts

Join us for Family Nature Crafts every Sunday starting at 10am by the Swamp (supplies limited to the first 100 participants).

Naturalist Know-how

Learn how to be a naturalist! Youth ages 8-11 learn a new nature skill each month. Offered every Sunday at 2pm in the Naturalist Center (space is limited to the first 20 participants).

Learn more

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Select Date
African Hall
Animal Attraction
Aquarium
Aquarium Elevator
Aquarium Stairs
Aviary
Boardroom
Cafe & Moss Room
Classroom
Coral Reef Exhibit
Discovery Tidepool
Early Explorers Cove
Earthquake
East Garden
Entrance
Exit from Rainforest
Flooded Forest
Forum Theater
Information
Islands of Evolution
Level 1 Elevator
Level 1 Stairs
Living Roof
Naturalist Center
Northern California Coast
Observation Deck
Penguins
Piazza
Planetarium
Planetarium Entrance
Project Lab
Rainforest
Reef Lagoon
Science in Action
Stairs / Elevator to Living Roof & Naturalist Center
Store
Swamp
Swamp (Aquarium Level)
Upper Gallery
Water Planet
West Garden

Programs for Kids
Week of Wednesday, April 23rd

Please select a date to see upcoming events.

  • Junior Academy: Family Nature Crafts
    Sunday, April 20th

    Junior Academy: Family Nature Crafts

    Location: Swamp

    10:00 am

    Families with children aged 5-11 are invited to make nature-themed crafts.

    Today's craft - Kelp Forest: Learn about this delicate ecosystem while creating a tissue paper and liquid starch mural.

    Supplies are limited to the first 100 participants. Free with general admission. Adult supervision required.

  • Little Naturalists: Sprouts
    Wednesday, April 23rd

    Little Naturalists: Sprouts

    Location: Naturalist Center

    9:45 am

    Explore the plants and animals of nature’s gardens through hands-on investigation and activities. For ages 3-5, accompanied by a parent/adult caregiver.

    Today's theme - Birds in the Garden: Learn about the birds that visit our gardens and make a miniature bird house to place in your garden.

    Reservations: Space is limited. Reservations and a fee are required for all Little Naturalists programs: $5 per member child; $7 per non-member child; free to attending adults with general admission. To reserve a place today, buy a ticket online or over the phone at 415-379-8000.

    Buy Tickets

  • Saturday Safari
    Saturday, April 26th

    Saturday Safari

    Location: African Hall

    11:00 am

    Join us for an imaginary expedition around the corner or around the world! We will begin by using maps to chart our trip, and then be transported via stories, specimens, props, songs and dance. All ages are welcome!

    This month - Life Between the Tides: Learn about the creatures that are uncovered during low-tide. Listen to tide pool stories and examine real specimens.

    Free with general admission. Adult supervision required.

 Print out an Academy coloring sheet [69k]

Do you ever wonder what kind of activities are available for you and your child? Are you unable to attend a program? Download and print the page below for a sample activity.

 Caribou Crossword Puzzle [300k]

 Penguin Connect the Dots [410k]

Policies:

These policies were developed to keep the Cove clean and safe for all our guests.

Each attending adult is responsible for the children in his or her care. Maximum ratio 1 adult per 3 children, or 3 adults per child.

  • This is a shoe free zone; socks are recommended
  • This is a food/drink free zone
  • Keep the Cove safe, no running or climbing
  • Keep the Cove healthy, don’t share illness
  • Stroller parking is only for Cove visits

Space is limited in the Early Explorers Cove. Your wait time in the entrance line may vary. We have provided coloring tables to occupy children while an adult waits in line.

The Cove has puzzles, books and games to amuse children in your party that are older than 5.

Resources:

Is your child too old for the Cove now? You can visit the Naturalist Center for some fun activities.

Getting ready to enroll your child in school? Visit First 5 California for some helpful tips.

Download the Family Guide prior to your visit for some activity ideas.

Cove Hours

   

Monday - Saturday

10:00 am - 5:00 pm

Sunday

11:00 am - 5:00 pm
Last entry is at 4:30 pm, space permitting

Members Hours

Tuesday: 8:30 am - 9:30 am
Sunday: 10:00 am - 11:00 am

The Academy is closed Thanksgiving and Christmas.

Contact

   

cove@calacademy.org

Location

   

The Early Explorers Cove is located on the main floor across from the pendulum.