Smithsonian Natural History Museum Opening Hours

Smithsonian Natural History Museum Opening Hours

The Smithsonian Natural History Museum opening hours are from 10:00 AM to 5:30 PM most days of the year.  During summer and on many busy weekends during the year, Smithsonian Natural History Museum opening hours are extended until 7:30 PM.   The museum is open every day of the year except Christmas Day.

Fees at the Smithsonian Natural History Museum

Entry is always free to all exhibits.  However, there are also some paid activities at the Natural History Museum.  First, there is the IMAX theater — the Natural History Museum shows several different IMAX movies during the day.  Adults pay $9 and children pay $7.50.  There is also a Butterfly Pavilion, where you can enter a large room with thousands of butterflies.  Ticket prices are $6 for adults and $5 for children.

 

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Food at the Smithsonian Natural History Museum

There are two cafes inside the museum, the Atrium Cafe and the Cafe Natural.  These are both on the ground floor.

Restrooms at the Smithsonian Museums

Of course, every museum has a restroom.  If you are looking for a restroom on the National Mall, just go into one of the free museums.

Handicapped Facilities at the Smithsonian Natural History Museum

Every Smithsonian Museum is handicapped accessible.  There are two entrances to the Natural History Museum.  Enter via the Constitution Avenue entrance for a wheelchair ramp access.  The Madison Drive entrance (facing the National Mall) has a staircase to climb.  The handicapped parking area is on Madison Drive.

Tours to the Smithsonian Museums

One of the best ways to see the National Mall is to visit it as part of a tour.  Nonpartisan Pedicab offers tours of the National Mall and memorials that take approximately 2-3 hours.  Many guests say that this is the highlight of their trip to Washington DC.

Parking at the Smithsonian Natural History Museum

There is metered 3 hour parking on Madison and Jefferson Drives that pass in front of many of the museums on the National Mall.  Make sure you read the signs, as not every parking spot on these two streets are available for the general public.  Never park in a handicapped spot on the National Mall.  You will get a ticket for $250.  There is also parking on some of the cross streets, such as 3rd, 4th, 7th and 14th Streets.  On 7th and 14th, this is non-rush hour parking.  Read the signs if you do not want to be ticketed.  There are commercial parking garages on 10th and 11th Streets north of Pennsylvania Avenue.

On-street parking on the National Mall is no longer free of charge.  Three hour parking is available at $2 per hour.  Parking meters only accept credit cards.

 

Metro to the Smithsonian Natural History Museum

The nearest Metro stations are the Smithsonian Metro station and Federal Triangle metro.  The Smithsonian Metro is the equivalent of 4 blocks away from the Madison Drive entrance.  The Federal Triangle Metro is the equivalent of 4 blocks away from the Constitution Avenue entrance.  If you cannot walk up stairs, use the Federal Triangle Metro to go to the Constitution Avenue entrance to the museum.

More information

You can visit the Smithsonian Natural History Museum website to plan your trip.