There’s snow place like the Academy during the holidays! Explore our winter wonderland between November 17 and January 7, with indoor flurries, icy science experiments, spirited performances, and more.

Don't miss the merriment—'Tis the Season for Science closes on January 7! View our special holiday hours here.

However you celebrate the holidays, a visit to the Academy should be at the top of your list. Science-lovers of all ages will revel in a festive array of winter-themed activities, can’t-miss events like Welcome Winter Night and NightLife: Santa Claude's Workshop, jolly live shows, falling snow—and, of course, nearly 60,000 animals eager to offer you their season’s greetings. Guests like you are a gift to us, and we look forward to making merry with you soon!

Boy happily plays under indoor snow flurries in the Academy Piazza

Winter weather

Flurries are in the forecast for San Francisco! Twirl under (non-allergenic, biodegradable, non-toxic, and non-staining) snow swirling in the Piazza twice an hour.

Close-up of musicians playing brass bells with mallets

Music and magic

Take a break between exhibits to enjoy a live show! Over a dozen local cultural groups will perform in the Piazza, from choruses to Polynesian dancers to master magicians.

An Academy docent demonstrates properties of melting ice to two guests

Pop-up programs

Interactive experiences abound on every floor of the museum: Slide into the Ice Lab to try on a blubber glove, see a penguin-themed puppet show, create a caribou craft, and tour the winter night sky in the planetarium. See program information below!

Wolf pelt and other specimens in the Academy Naturalist Center

Arctic exploration

Drop by the Naturalist Center to discover how life thrives in polar climates. Touch a wolf pelt, examine snowflakes under a microscope, and learn about Indigenous climate leadership through specimens, books, and games.