Just under the north tower of the Golden Gate Bridge is a fantastic place where children and their families will find activities in art, science, and culture. The museum has an art studio with special classes and drop-in activities, and a science lab called the Wave Workshop. They have a fabulous two-and-a-half acre outdoor adventure area where kids can explore replicas of a shipwreck, a crow’s nest, the Golden Gate Bridge, and more. Special performances, music, art activities, food, and fun await the whole family!
Classes: Bay Area Discovery Museum (BADM) hosts Music Together classes. Toddlers (ages 18 months to 3 years) and their caregivers can sign up for interesting weekly classes such as Messy Art, Treasure Hunt, and Outdoor Learning. Fees vary by program.
Camps: BADM's summer camps are very popular with City kids, even if they have to trek across the Golden Gate Bridge. Camps focus on visual and performing arts, building, natural history, science, arts and crafts, and more.
2014 Discovery Days Week-long Summer Camps:
Dates: June 2–August 22 (No Camp July 4)
Ages: 3 to entering Grade 3. Junior Counselor Program: 9 to 12 years
Days/Times: Mondays through Fridays. Morning sessions: 9am–1pm; Afternoon sessions, 1pm–4pm
Cost: varies by camp; additional cost for materials; sibling and multiple session discounts available
Extended care: 8am–9am, 1pm–2pm, 4pm–5pm; $10 per child per day per session, $35 per week for morning and afternoon
There's something for everyone: Big Discoveries, On the Bay, Art Attack!, Bugs, Insects and Spiders, Creature Creations, Fort Building, Imaginary Worlds, Shipwrecks and Treasure Hunt, Super Heroes and Heroines, and more.
2014 Spring Break Camp:
Dates: April 15–April 18
Ages: 4 to 8
Days/Times: Tuesday through Friday, 9am–3pm
Cost: $375 for members, $400 for non-members
2014 Winter Break Shipwrecks and Treasure Hunt Camp Session (Ski Week):
Dates: February 19–21
Ages: 4 to 7
Days/Times: Wednesday through Friday, 9am–3pm
Cost: $275 for members, $300 for non-members. Space is limited to 12 children.
2013–2014 Winter Break Art Attack! Camp Session:
Dates: December 26–December 27, January 2–3
Ages: 4 to 7
Days/Times: Thursday through Friday, 9am–3pm
Cost: $200 for members, $225 for non-members
Celebrations: BADM offers the following birthday packages:
- Bounce-a-Palooza: two hours exclusive use of the Discovery Theatre, use of bounce house, face painting, party crafts and more
- Birthday Bonanza: a themed party plus a host, decorations, and goodie bags
- Birthday Blast: music, face painting, a craft, decorations, and goodie bags
- Party Room Rental: bring your own cake and goodies.
Call ahead to make arrangements for specific party times. Booking at least two to three months in advance is recommended. Balloons are not allowed in the entire facility.
Gear: The museum's gift shop offers a fantastic assortment of art and science books, toys, and games. Your Thomas the Tank Engine lover will be in heaven here, too.
$11 per person. Infants under 6 months are FREE. Members are free after paying an annual fee of $150 for a Family membership or $250 for Supporting membership.
*Try to go mid-week as weekend crowds can sometimes be exhausting. BADM is closed on Mondays and most major holidays.
*The first Wednesdays of the month are FREE.
*For safety reasons related to accessible exit and entry, strollers are not allowed in the small historic buildings. Stroller parking is available outside each building.
*Members of AAA and KQED get $1 off museum admission.
*Admission is free to members of the American Association of Museums (AAM) and the Association of Children's Museums (ACM).