San Francisco’s Must-See Museums

Welcome to San Francisco, the Bay City full of fun and fascinating must-see museums!

Check out our top choices for museums you must see while visiting!

  • Exploratorium - This must-see San Francisco stop allows kids of all ages to explore a 21st-century learning lab full of over 600 different displays, ranging from educational mazes to total darkness experiences. Enjoy the park and waterfront scenic spot typical of California alongside several artful, scientific, and original human perceptive displays perfect for the playful and curious!
  • Asian Art Museum - The Asian Art Museum is one of the largest collections purely dedicated to Asian arts in the Western World, first established in 1966. Here you will find over 12,000 objects representing various countries and cultures throughout Asia, a great cultural learning experience.
  • De Young - Welcome to what many consider to be the finest fine arts museum in California, complete with over 27,000 works of art from around the globe! This museum, considered to be the oldest and most diverse in California, is copper-clad and features a cafe, museum store, and onsite observation tower that provides the best views of the Golden Gate District.
  • Contemporary Jewish Museum - The Yud Gallery, with its 36 stunning diamond-shaped skylights and over 63,000 square feet of sobering yet beautiful exhibits shows guests the deep influence of the rich Jewish culture in the Western World. See history, art, and culture put together to display the past and present of this unique culture!
  • Walt Disney Family Museum - A perfect choice for a family full of the curious at heart, the Walt Disney Family Museum provides a special glimpse at Walt Disney's life, his art in animation, and his revolutionary developments in art tools and equipment. Learn a comprehensive history of the legend himself from Presidio to Mickey Mouse, Disneyland and beyond.
  • California Academy of Sciences - Created in 2008, the California Academy of Sciences is an aquarium, natural history museum, and planetarium all in one, the perfect education and entertainment stop! Enjoy everything from sharks to gemstones, earthquakes to a four-story rainforest and 2.5- acre living roof! This is also one of our top choices for must-see museums because it is located in Golden Gate Park, providing great sightseeing opportunities as well!
  • San Francisco Cable Car Museum - This one is a unique San Fran classic, the Cable Car Museum! Frommer's once named this museum one out of ten of the world’s top free attractions, the museum capturing the fun whimsy of cable cars, as well as the complicated mechanics behind what it takes to run one. Learn all about physics, momentum, and the interesting history of the Bay!
  • San Francisco Museum of Modern Art - The San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, or SFMOMA, contains over 27,000 contemporary and modern works of art and is oftentimes considered to be the "newest and coolest" art museum in the city. Enjoy the striking design of this must-see on Union Square!
  • Museum of African Diaspora - MoAD is a must-see for its history and culture education alone, the museum sharing art and stories of the African community at large. Learn all about the Bay Area’s African heritage through art, history, and culture, each beautifully capturing the migration of Africans into this Western World.
  • Museum of Cartoon Art - This is always a fun option for the kiddos, the Museum of Cartoon Art holding over 6,000 original cartoon/animated art forms from all over the world! Here you can see editorial work, comic books, anime, funnies, and graphic novels, you may even visit during a book signing or drawing workshop!
  • Legion of Honor - The Legion of Honor is a definite must-see for any classic art lovers, the complex holding classic and traditional art from the 13th to 20th centuries. See an original cast of Rodin’s Thinker as well as other European and American paintings and decorative arts from artists such as Monet, Van Gogh, and Picasso.