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


9:30 am – 5:00 pm


11:00 am – 5:00 pm
Members' Hours:


8:30 – 9:30 am


10:00 – 11:00 am

Please note: The Academy will be closing at 3:00 pm on 10/24 (final entry at 2:00 pm). We apologize for any inconvenience.

There are no notifications at this time.


Steinhart Aquarium

Steinhart Aquarium, the Living Collection, is home to 38,000 live animals from around the world, representing more than 900 separate species. Come nose-to-beak with an African penguin, watch sharks and stingrays cruise beneath your feet, check out the set of teeth on a piranha, and learn about the critical, life-sustaining role that water plays on Earth.

Animal Attraction

Animal attraction, aquarium, Steinhart Aquarium, Bay Area Family activities

Visit the Steinhart Aquarium and you’ll never think of the birds and the bees the same way again. Animal Attraction explores some of the wildest courtship and mating strategies in the animal kingdom. In eighteen beautiful tanks, the exhibit will explore the concept that nothing in life is more important than reproductive success.

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Philippine Coral Reef Gallery

At a depth of 25 feet and holding 212,000 gallons of water, the Philippine Coral Reef is one of the deepest exhibits of live corals in the world. It houses a broad range of aquatic life from the coral reefs and mangroves of the Philippines, one of the most diverse reef systems in the world. These animals include delicate soft and hard corals, blacktip reef sharks, stingrays, and more than 2,000 colorful reef fish.

Educator Guides

Philippine Coral Reef (preK-2) [PDF]

Philippine Coral Reef (3-5) [PDF]

Philippine Coral Reef (6-12) [PDF]

California Coast

Northern California Coast Gallery aquarium fish and coral reef

Be dazzled by the diversity and richness of life in our very own oceanic backyard, from the National Marine Sanctuaries of Northern California to the giant kelp forests of Southern California. Our California Coast exhibit includes a 100,000 gallon tank that replicates habitats such as salt marshes and rocky inlets, the 2,000 gallon Rocky Reefs tank (packed with brilliant pink anemones and red corals), plus favorites such as the interactive Discovery Tidepool, the Tank of Giants, and our greater Pacific octopus.

Learn more

Educator Guides

California Coast Educator Guide (preK-2) [PDF]

California Coast Educator Guide (3-5) [PDF]

California Coast Educator Guide (6-12) [PDF]

Water Planet Gallery

The Water Planet exhibit is designed to be infinitely flexible. Dozens of tanks, from five to 5,000 gallons in size, contain an ever-changing variety of fish, reptiles, amphibians, insects, and other invertebrates.

Educator Guides

Water Planet Educator Guide (preK-2) [PDF]

Water Planet Educator Guide (3-5) [PDF]

Water Planet Educator Guide (6-12) [PDF]

Rainforests of the World Gallery

The Academy Rainforest is teeming with live animals — including free-flying birds and butterflies, exotic reptiles and amphibians, and a cave with bats. Climb through the layers of the rainforest and descend into a 100,000 gallon “Flooded Forest” tank, where freshwater fish cruise overhead.

Tusher African Hall

Chameleons, cichlids, a monitor lizard and penguins bring African Hall to life. Our most famous residents here are the colony of 20 African penguins. Their home is modeled after Boulders Beach in South Africa, a location where these penguins are found in the wild. Watch them via our live Penguin Cams and read scientific insight and color commentary on the biologists’ blog.

Educator Guides

African Hall Educator Guide (preK-2) [PDF]

African Hall Educator Guide (3-5) [PDF]

African Hall Educator Guide (6-12) [PDF]

The Swamp Gallery

A returning favorite from the original Steinhart Aquarium, the Swamp contains Claude, an albino American alligator and several alligator snapping turtles. Visitors can view the animals from the surface as well as from an underwater window. A tank of fearsome alligator gars, which look like alligators but are actually fish, faces the Swamp. Don’t miss our venomous animals like the black widow spider or the eastern diamondback snake!

Purchase Online


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Support Philippine
Typhoon Victims


The Academy has a long history of conducting scientific research and community outreach in the Philippines, and we are deeply saddened by the devastation that Typhoon Haiyan has wrought. If you would like to join us in supporting those affected by the storm, please consider making a donation to one of the following organizations:

See Tropical Fish in HD


Watch our Philippine Coral Reef Webcam.

Animal Donations


Have an animal to donate to Steinhart Aquarium? Please fill out our online animal donation form here.

Expedition 2011


Expedition 2011 multi-colored tour bus

Between April 26 and June 10, 2011, Academy botanists, entomologists and marine biologists, will explore shallow-water reefs, the deep sea, and terrestrial and freshwater areas in the Philippines. Follow the expedition’s discoveries and explorations.

Learn more

Sponsored by



Aquarium Staff


The trifecta of the living collections can be broken down into animal health, husbandry and engineering.

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Rainforest Blog


Leafcutter ants

Academy biologists share the inside scoop on new babies, specimens, and more. Learn more

Species List


View species lists by gallery.

  • Philippine Coral Reef Gallery
    PDF [92kb] DOCX [28kb]
  • Northern California Coast Gallery
    PDF [68kb] DOCX [24kb]
  • Water Planet Gallery
    PDF [60kb] DOCX [24kb]
  • Rainforests of the World Gallery
    PDF [72kb] DOCX [24kb]
  • Tusher African Hall
    PDF [64kb] DOCX [16kb]
  • The Swamp Gallery
    PDF [52kb] DOCX [16kb]



Aquarium exhibits are accessible from both the first floor and the basement floor of the Academy.

Academy floor plan

Ever Wonder Why
Claude is White?


Hear some interesting theories in our radio spot:

Total Time - 30sec [1.1MB]