The Academy entrance and Living Roof from above

Thank you for making our first Community Free Days a success!

Explore other opportunities to visit for free throughout the year, and stay in the know by signing up for occasional email updates about upcoming free days.

We're proud to create an Academy for All, welcoming over 330,000 visitors annually through free and reduced admission programs—and we thank you for your support!

Top 6 Free Day Tips

Explore the Academy like a pro. 

  • Main entrance of the Academy
    #1: Save paper—and time: Have your tickets ready on your phone, brightness up.
  • Muni bus line 44 stops right in front of the Academy entrance
    #2: Go car-free on Community Free Day! Here's how
  • Visitors reserving planetarium passes at the kiosk
    #3: Big universe, small planetarium: Get your passes first!
  • Friendly docents help guests find their way around the Academy
    #4: Chat up our docents. The orange coats mean they know everything.
  • Side view of the Terrace Restaurant at the Academy
    #5: Café too busy? Try the Terrace outside.
  • Penguin and girl come face to face inside African Hall at the Academy
    #6: Penguin feedings and dive shows are popular. For more face time, arrive early.

Curate Your Day

Are penguins your priority? Or are you more of a coral reef connoisseur? See what's on the calendar each day to make the most of your visit. 



Click to reveal answers to frequently asked questions about Community Free Days. Still need help? Contact us

I purchased general admission tickets and was planning on visiting this Sunday, Monday, or Tuesday. Can I still come, even though it's Community Free Days?

If you have general admission tickets but not Community Free Days tickets, you may still visit on 9/23, 9/24, or 9/25, but should expect significant wait times and a very busy museum. If at all possible, we strongly recommend choosing another day to visit.

Please note that general admission tickets will not be sold at the Academy's ticket windows during Community Free Days.

Thanks for your understanding!

I wasn't able to get tickets. When are the next free days?

Don't worry! Our Free & Reduced Admission page has you covered, with a variety of ways to visit the Academy for free or at a substantial discount, year-round. 

If you live in San Francisco, we strongly recommend visiting during Neighborhood Free Weekends. Find your zip code to see when you can visit for free.

Be sure to sign up to receive occasional emails about upcoming free days at the Academy.

Why did tickets have to be reserved online?

Free days are some of our busiest days. In order to reduce lines, crowding, and wait times at the museum—and allow visitors to better plan and enjoy their day—we implemented a reserved, timed ticket entry system to help improve your overall free day experience at the Academy.

If I don't reserve a ticket, can I still visit for free?

You are not guaranteed entry if you did not reserve a ticket in advance. 

What if I show up early/late for my time slot?

In order to reduce lines and make timely entry possible for all free day visitors, we’ve introduced timed ticket entry for Community Free Days and strongly recommend arriving at your designated ticket time. If you arrive early, you may have to wait until your designated entry time based on building capacity. If you arrive after your designated entry time, we will try our best to get you into the museum as promptly as possible but please note there may be an entry queue.

Can school and youth groups visit during Community Free Days?

Yes. However, due to expected heavy attendance, reservations will be limited to select entry times on Monday, September 24, and Tuesday, September 25, 2018, and selected at random. Learn more.

Page translation instructions

To translate our website into over 100 languages, click the "Select Language" button found at the bottom of every Academy webpage.


Community Free Days are made possible thanks to generous support from Pacific Gas and Electric Company.

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