Few city children grow up without visiting the dinosaurs, the life-size dioramas of animal life, and other natural wonders in this popular museum patronized by over 4 million people each year. Since its founding in 1869, the museum has grown to 45 permanent exhibition halls spanning four city blocks, 13 of them opened in the past 10 years. Holdings include 30 million specimens and cultural artifacts, many unique in the world. Newer exhibition areas such as the Hall of Biodiversity, the renovated Fossil Halls, and the Rose Center, bring constantly updated research to visitors through multimedia installations.

  • Central Park West, between 77th and 81 Sts

  • 212 769 5100


  • Open 10am–5:45pm daily; Rose Center open until 8:45pm on first Fri of month

  • Adults $15, students and seniors $11, children $8.50, members free

Museum & Hayden Planetarium Space Show

  • $24/$18/$14; Super Saver (includes IMAX films & special exhibitions) $32/$24.50/$20

Museum Guide

Enter from Central Park West onto the 2nd floor to view the Barosaurus exhibit, and African, Asian, and Central and South American peoples and animals. The Hall of Biodiversity, ocean life, and minerals and gems are on the 1st floor. North American Indians, birds, and reptiles are on the 3rd floor, and dinosaurs and fossils on the 4th.

Eat at the lower-level food court, or one of the three cafés.

Visit the great dinosaurs, African mammals, and minerals and gems collection.

Join a free tour of the museum’s highlights or enjoy free jazz concerts on the first Friday of each month.

To obtain advance tickets to the Rose Center’s Space Show, call 212 769 5200

Top 10 Exhibits
  1. Dinosaurs and Fossils

    The best-known hallmark of the museum, the collection of dinosaur fossils is the world’s largest. The giant Barosaurus in the rotunda is the highest free-standing exhibit.

  2. Mammals

    Dramatic dioramas of lifesize animals are divided by continents and shown in accurate natural habitats. The wildlife ranges from colossal African elephants to endangered Asian species such as lions and leopards.

  3. Ocean Life

    The Milstein Hall of Ocean Life explores the waters of the earth and their inhabitants in skillful dioramas of ocean life. The hall is presided over by a 94-ft (29-m) lifesize model of a blue whale.

  4. Hall of Biodiversity

    Opened in 1998 to encourage conservation, the hall contains a rainforest with accurate sounds, plants, and inhabitants. The 100-ft (30-m) long Spectrum of Life wall displays 1,500 specimens from bacteria to mammals, as well as a giant squid overhead.

  5. Hall of Asian Peoples

    Exquisite artifacts, artwork, costumes, and dioramas of daily life show the different religions and lifestyles of Chinese, Korean, Indian, and other Asian cultures.

  6. Hall of African Peoples

    These depictions of tribes living in various environments reflect 100 years of research. The displays include dwellings, clothing, masks, textiles, weapons, and tools.

  7. Meteorites, Minerals, and Gems

    Wonders include the 563-carat Star of India, a 596-lb (270-kg) topaz crystal from Brazil, and the Cape York meteorite, 4.5 billion years old and weighing 34 tons.

  8. Northwest Coast Indians

    This area features Native American totem poles showing the woodworking skills of tribes living from Washington state to southern Alaska. Also on show is a 63-ft (19-m) canoe built in 1878.

  9. Human Biology and Evolution

    This display of human origins and physical characteristics includes reconstructed heads of early hominids that bring you face to face with your predecessors.

  10. Birds of the World

    The museum has the world’s largest collection of birds – more than a million specimens. The collection is organized geographically, with separate halls displaying dioramas of oceanic, North American, and other birds of the world.

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