Explore the museum at night
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Heads up! Proof of full vaccination or a negative COVID-19 test taken within 72 hours of a scheduled visit is now required for all Academy guests ages 12+. View our vaccination policy and health and safety details here.

All NightLife guests must reserve timed-entry tickets online in advance. Members, please log in after adding tickets to your cart to receive your discount.

Please note that the last entry into the rainforest exhibit is 7:30 pm—our animals need their sleep!

NightLife is 21+ with ID, from 6-10 pm.

Calling all creatures of the night: explore the nocturnal side of the Academy at NightLife and see what's revealed. With live DJs, outdoor bars, ambiance lighting, and nearly 40,000 live animals (including familiar faces like Claude the albino alligator), the night is sure to be wild.

Step inside the iconic Shake House and our four-story Rainforest, where you can explore the Amazon’s treetops surrounded by free-flying birds and butterflies. Reservations for these exhibits are no longer required. However, please note that the last entry into the rainforest is 7:30 pm—our animals need their sleep.

Venture into our latest aquarium exhibit Venom to encounter live venomous animals and learn the power of venom to both harm and heal.

Visit the BigPicture exhibit in the Piazza to marvel at the most recent winners of the BigPicture Natural Photography competition.

Bask in the glow of one of the largest living coral reef displays in the world: our 212,000-gallon Philippine Coral Reef tank.

Take in the interstellar views from the Living Roof, then grab a bite from the Academy Cafe and head to the West Garden outdoor bar to drink and dine under the stars. For adults 21+.

A few don't-miss details:

  • To help keep guests safe and ensure everyone has plenty of room to roam, NightLife will be limiting capacity and have timed-entry tickets.
     
  • Last entry into the rainforest exhibit is 7:30 pm—our animals need their sleep.
     
  • Morrison Planetarium is now open at NightLife with 4 showtimes. To maximize staff and guest safety, reservations are required and capacity is limited. Reservations are first-come, first served—simply scan the QR code posted in the front lobby upon arrival to make your reservation.

    Please note: food and drink are not permitted inside the planetarium, and masks must be worn properly at all times.
     

  • Food and beverages are available for purchase in the Academy Café and West Garden Terrace including a variety of grab-and-go options, craft cocktails, and more. All food and drink must be enjoyed outdoors.
     
  • Please embrace the Academy’s three favorite Ws: Wear a mask, Wash your hands, and Watch your distance. All guests will be required to wear a mask and social distancing will be enforced according to the latest public health and safety guidelines.
     
  • NightLife is adults-only for 21+
     
  • Still have Q’s? See our FAQ’s here.

Music

Planetarium Shows

6:30 pm, 7:30 pm

Explore the immense scale of the known Universe in this live presentation that leaves Earth far behind.

8:30 pm, 9:30 pm

How did Earth become a living planet in the wake of our Solar System’s violent birth? Capacity is limited!

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Upcoming ticketed museum events

September 23rd at 6:00 pm

Explore the nocturnal side of the Academy and see what makes the museum at night different.

September 30th at 6:00 pm

Come together and connect with the Bay’s AAPI community in an evening of music, storytelling, and fashion.

October 7th at 6:00 pm

Explore the Academy at night alongside nearly 40,000 live animals. For adults 21+.

October 14th at 6:00 pm

Catch a sneak peek of the new BigPicture exhibit, where life is wild and animals inspire us to be more human.

Upcoming free virtual events

October 7th at 7:00 pm

Fire is essential to forest life—hear from experts tending fires and ensuring a more resilient California.