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San Francisco - Museums

San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SFMOMA).
SFMOMA opened in January 1995 designed by Swiss architect Mario Botta. An extensive collection of twentieth-century art.. On the first floor, with its large atrium lobby, are a 299-seat theater, an interactive Education Center, the museum shop, and CaffË Museo. Art galleries occupy the top four floors. Selections from the permanent collection of art, sculpture, furniture, and photographs are displayed on an on-going basis along with changing special exhibits. Across Third Street from SFMOMA is the Center for the Arts whose mission is to provide performance and exhibition space for contemporary artists and to reflect San Francisco's cultural diversity.


California Academy of Sciences, in Golden Gate Park, is full of wonders: a bird-eating spider, Steinhart Aquarium, a 1,350 pound quartz crystal, and some scenes right out of Jurassic Park. Schedule time to watch the dolphins and seals being fed, every two hours beginning at 10:30 am.

Exploratorium, a playful museum where kids make the discoveries for themselves, activating over 700 exhibits. Combine your visit here with some kite flying on Marina Green or a visit to the Wave Organ at the end of the St. Francis Yacht Club jetty. For lunch or dinner, Union and Chestnut streets offer a number of restaurants.

Pacific Bell Park, the splashy home of the San Francisco Giants, offers Guided Insider’s Tours daily at 10:30 am and 12:30 pm. Kids will love sitting in the dugout, experiencing a big league clubhouse, walking on the field, and visiting other places in the park only players and staff get to see. For tour reservations, please call (415) 972-2212 Monday through Friday between 8:30 am and 5:30 pm, or order tickets online here.

Here are other suggestions within a 30 minute to 2 1/2 drive of The City:

Bay Area Discovery Museum, located under the north tower of the Golden Gate Bridge, was conceived, designed and constructed solely for children. Dozens of entertaining exhibits include crewing on a boat and exploring San Francisco Bay.

Six Flags Marine World, just 30 miles northeast of San Francisco, is the only combination wildlife park and oceanarium in the country. Animals of land, sea and air are showcased in spectacular shows and innovative attractions. The Gentle Jungle has plenty of hands-on contact for kids and adults. And lucky youngsters can always hope for a kiss from a killer whale. "Is that fish on your breath?"

Monterey Bay Aquarium, 130 miles south, is the largest aquarium in the United States. Probe the deep wonders of Monterey Bay at this Cannery Row magnet where sharks, sea otters and schooling fish cast their spells. Little ones are particularly intrigued by the bay ray pool where they can actually pet the fish.


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