Drawing on the Academy's 150-plus years of research and specimen collection, Kimball Natural History Museum explores some of the most significant discoveries and issues of our time.

Learn what earthquakes tell us about the movement of tectonic plates, compare fossils of our early human relatives, and see adaptations that make life possible even in the harshest environments—all while strolling beneath the bones of some of the planet's largest inhabitants.

The Kimball Natural History Museum is an embodiment of the Academy's mission to explore, explain, and sustain life. While featuring immersive exhibits that illustrate the patterns and processes of evolution, it also explores ways we can help to protect that diversity.

A dramatic black-and-white photo of a pair of greater kudu, posed in one of African Hall's dioramas.

Tusher African Hall

Explore majestic dioramas of African landscapes, trace the milestones of our own species' fascinating history, and meet our colony of African penguins.

Profile image of a bleached sea lion skull from Academy collections.

Skulls

Walk along a wallscape of sea lion skulls, watch a live colony of dermestid beetles demonstrate their “bone cleaning” proficiency, and learn how scientists use the Academy’s vast collection of skulls to uncover clues about life on Earth.

A family enjoys the "shake house," watching books and chandeliers rattle in one of Earthquake's main highlights.

Earthquake

Prepare to be moved! Discover the causes of earthquakes and see what they say about the movement of Earth's crust, a continuous process that builds mountains, relocates continents, and creates the diverse and changing landscapes in which organisms evolve—or go extinct.

A researcher peers into the microscope-like setup of one of the Project Lab's imaging stations.

The Project Lab

Watch Academy scientists at work in this active research laboratory, where specimen imaging, DNA extractions, and bird and mammal prep occurs daily.

Visitors explore the Islands of Evolution exhibit.

Islands of Evolution

Explore the remote islands of Madagascar and the Galapagos through the eyes of Academy scientists, and learn how islands function as living laboratories for evolutionary change and discovery.

A visitor watches a science video at the Science in Action station.

Science in Action

This interactive exhibit (which also hosts live talks by Academy scientists) includes computer stations, multimedia displays, and science broadcasts that reveal recent scientific discoveries from around the world.

Closeup of large, golden ball of the Focault Pendulum.

Foucault Pendulum

A returning favorite from the original Academy, the Foucault pendulum—a 235-pound brass ball attached to a 30-foot-long steel aircraft cable—provides simple and elegant proof of the Earth's rotation.

The toothy, open mouth of a T. rex skeleton greets visitors at the Academy entrance.

Other Highlights

From our 87-foot-long blue whale skeleton to the towering T. rex that greets you at the door, the Kimball Natural History Museum is packed with yet more fascinating invitations to explore the spectacular diversity of life on Earth.

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Visit the Naturalist Center

Visit the Naturalist Center

Located on Level 3, the Naturalist Center is the Academy's home of interactive learning. Touch specimens, ask questions, or join one of our daily programs, all free with admission. 

Early Explorers Cove

Early Explorers Cove

Ideal for children up to 5 years old, it's a play space, reading room, and activities area for our littlest visitors.

Visitor Map

Visitor Map

Prefer to plan your exploration in advance? Use your smartphone for way-finding? Just click here for an interactive map of the Academy and its exhibits. 

interactive visitor map