American Museum of Natural History

The American Museum of Natural History is both entertaining and interesting for all ages

Entrance to New York's famous American Museum of Natural History
Entrance to New York's famous American Museum of Natural History cc licensed photo by t-mizo

Beyond the dioramas and the blue whale looming over the Hall of Ocean Life, visitors to the American Museum of Natural History can experience interactive exhibits including a life-sized interactive ecosystem that engulfs you in the sights and smells of the Dzanga-Sangha Rainforest, following the Cosmic Pathway through 13 billion years of celestial evolution or mingling with free-flying butterflies in a tropical forest conservatory.

If it's your first visit to the American Museum of Natural History, consider taking a "Highlights Tour" for an overview of the museum collections or a "Spotlight Tour" for a more in-depth experience. iPhone and iPad users can enjoy the free "American Museum of Natural History Explorer" app that serves as both a personal tour guide and in-museum navigation system; additional American Museum of Natural History exhibit apps are available from the iTunes store.

Young children will enjoy being able to touch the exhibits in the Discovery Room and Hall of Planet Earth and all ages can enjoy an IMAX movie or Space Show in the Hayden Planetarium.

Basic admission to the museums permanent exhibits is by donation (their is a suggested amount). To see special exhibitions and view the IMAX or Planetarium shows you must pay a premium on top of the suggested admission. You should give yourself plenty of time to visit the museum; if you are planning to see the shows and special exhibits you may want to allow a full day and even that may seem tight as there is simply so much to see here!

The museum offers several eateries, but a more wallet friendly method of feeding the whole family may be to enjoy a hot dog or giant pretzel from the street vendors on the museum steps.

Nearby attractions include Central Park, Whitney Museum of American Art, The Frick Collection and the Metropolitan Museum of Art.

Facts For Your Visit

Fee: Yes.

American Museum of Natural History Hours:
Opening hours may differ on holidays

  • Monday: 10:00 AM – 5:30 PM
  • Tuesday: 10:00 AM – 5:30 PM
  • Wednesday: 10:00 AM – 5:30 PM
  • Thursday: 10:00 AM – 5:30 PM
  • Friday: 10:00 AM – 5:30 PM
  • Saturday: 10:00 AM – 5:30 PM
  • Sunday: 10:00 AM – 5:30 PM

Address: 200 Central Park W, New York, NY 10024, USA

Phone: (212) 769-5100

Official Website: American Museum of Natural History

American Museum of Natural History Reviews

Rated 4.5 out of 5 Star Rating

5 Star Rating What can I say. As someone who frequents the original Natural History Museum in London, which is itself amazing, all I can say is that (as usual) the Americans have done it way bigger and better. This place is amazing, you can easily spend all day here, but to do it justice would take multiple visits. There is just so much, you cannot take it all in at once. If you do thinks like the planetarium and the special exhibits you need a couple of days at least. There is such an array of different exhibits. The rock collection must be the best in the world. Its not as good as London for dinosaurs, but for nature and wildlife its second to none. The displays are so detailed it gives you a good idea of how the creatures live in the wild. If you go to New York, this is one place that should definitely be on your ToDo list.
Andy Smith - a week ago

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5 Star Rating I think this is the best natural history museum in the US. It's bigger and better than the one in DC. In 2.5 hours, we saw less than half of it. If you took your time you could easily spend an entire day here. I wish we had more time to visit this place and would do so if I lived here. I would love to go solo one day to take my time and read everything. The "spectrum of life" wall is absolutely stunning and very informative at the same time. It's a unique feature if you ask me. Fantastic climate change and evolution exhibits. Iconic, beautiful, and classic taxidermy animal exhibits. Unfortunately just about all of the dinosaur skeletons are either casts or reproductions. What they have looks very cool, but is disappointing when you find that most of them are not real bones. I do love that they have employees / volunteers on hand to answer questions and educate the public. It was refreshing listening to explanations of genetics and climate change. You can ask deep questions and they will do their best to answer them in detail. 5 floors of exhibits to visit and a gift shop on every floor. Entrance security is firm but fair. Crowd was comfortable on a Thursday morning, not too crazy.
Joey FLORIDA - a week ago

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5 Star Rating Fantastic museum. Amazing collection of taxidermy - especially for African mammals but the North American and Asian mammal halls are also excellent. Human Origins was very interesting - lots of really neat displays there. Make sure you check out the Blue Whale in the Ocean Life hall - it's so much bigger than you think it is. Also make sure to look up special exhibit - we saw one in the secret life of elephants and it was so so good. Pro tip: download the app. It has turn by turn directions to any exhibit or amenity. It's Google maps for the museum and it works fantastically.
Kye S - a month ago

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5 Star Rating So many different exhibits!! Highly recommended for anyone of all ages, fun interactive things, tons of cool gift shop items, super easy to get in and out, even have a super helpful app for navigating the museum! Staff were all pretty good as well! Also highly recommended the ticketed exhibits, especially invisible worlds!! Very unique things! Was great to actually learn cool new facts throughout the museum too!! Will be returning this Thursday and hope to come back more this summer!!
Kacie McCarten - a month ago

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5 Star Rating The highlight of our visit was the 5 minute Big Bang 💥 video that gives great context to how we fit into the universe. My kids said ‘that was the fastest five minutes ever’ when it was finished. As you exit, you get a feel for how long 13 billion years is as you mark time through the exit path, and it really comes into context when you see how short of an amount of time that is since the dinosaurs were around. I recommend purchasing tickets ahead of time as well as any attractions you want to add on. The Butterfly Vivarium was one of the best I ever ever seen! There was also a kids event going on where they handed out free solar car kits! It was a nice little activity for them!
Dana B (WI - MN - TN) - a week ago

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Directions

Subway Line Nearest Station Walking Time
B or C81st Street Station2 minutes
179th Street12 Minutes

How to get to American Museum of Natural History by Subway

Take the B (Weekdays Only) or C train to 81st Street / Museum of Natural History, walk south on Central Park West to the museum entrance on your right. Alternatively, take the 1 train to Broadway and West 79th Street, head southwest on Broadway towards 79th Street, turn left at 77th Street, walk two blocks and turn left on Central Park West.

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