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Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University

Founded in 1812, the Academy of Natural Sciences of Drexel University is the oldest natural history museum in the Americas. The excitement and wonder of the natural world come to life for visitors of all ages through hands-on exhibits, live-animal shows, video presentations, dynamic speakers, special workshops and classes and evening programs with environmental themes.  

Academy scientists are world renowned for their biodiversity and aquatic ecology research. A collection of more than 17 million animals and plants, housed in the research portion of the museum, is among the best specimen collections in the world. The Ewell Sale Stewart Library, with rare books dating to the 1500s and accounts of early explorers, is a major treasure trove for researchers around the world.

  • Dinosaur Hall

    See the towering Tyrannosaurus rex and fossils of other dinosaurs and Mesozoic reptiles. Don goggles and dig for fossils in The Big Dig, then watch as our fossil preparators work on specimens in the Fossil Prep Lab.

  • Butterflies!

    Stroll through a lush, tropical indoor garden filled with live butterflies.  Check out the pupae chamber; you may catch a butterfly emerging from its chrysalis.

  • Outside In

    Designed especially for children, Outside In features live animals to touch, a working beehive, microscopes to peer through and more.

  • Daily Activities

    Meet our live animal ambassadors at regular naturalist presentations and impromptu encounters throughout the museum.

  • Changing Exhibits

    The Academy hosts a range of engaging and hands-on traveling exhibits and creates exhibits based on its own collections. Check back to see what's on and what's upcoming!

For Adults

Science On Tap is a free monthly informal science café series in partnership with the American Philosophical Society, Science History Institute, Mütter Museum of The College of Physicians of Philadelphia, and the Wagner Free Institute of Science. Science on Tap takes place at National Mechanics Bar & Restaurant, 22 South 3rd Street in Old City.

The Academy's Town Square Series is designed to engage and provide relevant educational content to the public on environmental issues through leading thinkers and their work in biodiversity, freshwater issues, climate change, and evolution.

Door 19: Join us for an evening soirêe that gives adults a chance to look at science differently. Curated for the curious, each Door 19 is themed with corresponding music, drinks. meals and behind the scenes access.

Dinos After Dark: Enjoy pay-what-you-wish admission, family activities, and a beer garden in our famous Dinosaur Hall.

For Kids

The Academy offers weekend activities, spring and summer camps, birthday parties, sleepovers and more for kids.

Outside In:  The outdoors have been brought inside in this hands-on discovery center especially designed for children ages 3-8.  Touch live animals, pan for shark teeth, watch a real working beehive and more. 

Birthday Parties:  With a T. rex that has celebrated millions of birthdays, the Academy really knows how to throw a party! Celebrate your child's special day with dinosaurs, butterflies, hands-on activities and personalized attention from our staff.

Academy Science Camp invites campers ages 5-12 to learn about natural science in a safe, fun and engaging way. Each week of camp explores an exciting new theme and features an off-site field trip.

Tiny Tot Explorers:  Children ages 2-5 and their favorite adults can join us select mornings in exploring nature through games, crafts, songs and museum adventures.

Academy Teen Programs: For teens 12-16 the Academy offers weeklong experiences to learn out in nature with the Academy Expedition Program or in the Academy to work with animals.

Night in the Museum: Enjoy interactive activities and meet some of our live animals—all with the guidance of the Academy's experienced naturalists. Sleep overnight in the shadow of T. rex and other museum favorites.

For Students, Schools/Teachers

Education is central to the mission of the Academy. We provide a wide variety of services and resources for schools, home schooling families, youth camps and educators.

Field Trips: Take your class or group on a field trip to the Academy.

Academy on the Go: Find out how to bring the Academy to your organization!

Education Programs: A variety of special education programs are offered by the Academy of Natural Sciences, including: 

Field Trip Planning Guide: Educator and coordinator break down for field trip planning



Adults (13+) $22.00
Seniors (65+), Military & Students with ID $19.00
Children (2-12) $18.00
Children (<2) & Members Free
$2.00 off when purchased online

Special Programs for All Ages

The Academy offers a variety of day and evening programming.The most popular weekend festivals are Bugfest and Paleopalooza.


The Academy Cafe has a variety of hot and cold items, including pizza, hot dogs, fresh salads, fruit, soups and sandwiches.


The Academy Shop carries a variety of collectibles and gifts, educational kits, books, souvenirs and more. 


Opportunities abound on the floor of the museum as well as in the research departments and other offices.

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