20 Best Museums in San Francisco
San Francisco

San Francisco is a lovely city in California with breathtaking landscapes, stunning beaches, and incredible museums. San Francisco museums gracefully preserve the history and heritage of the American state, of California. 

Many historical and contemporary art museums in San Francisco attract many art lovers from all over the world. San Francisco is the wealthiest city in the USA in terms of modern art and modern ideology. 

There is no better place than the museums of San Francisco if you want to experience the glorious part of the city with some interesting twists like movie shows, live theatre, and storytelling sessions. Book your flight to San Francisco now and learn more about the heritage and history of San Francisco. 

To take you close to San Francisco, we bring the 20 best Museums in San Francisco that you can visit along with your family and friends. These all museums are unique and fascinating in themselves. If you’re interested in art, culture, science, technology, history, creative art, and sculpture, this article will belong to you

20 Best Museums of San Francisco

GLBT Historical Society Museum 

GLBT Historical Society Museum 

GLBT is one of the unique museums dedicated to the LGBTQ community. GLBT historical society museum was founded in 1985 to preserve the history of LGBTQ and teach the youth about the rights of the LGBTQ community. 

It is one of the best things to do in San Francisco if you are keen to learn about the rights, history, and culture of LGBTQ. GLBT Historical Society Museum also hosts several events, exhibitions, and even Pride Parades to teach people more about them.  

  • Location: 4127 18th Street San Francisco, CA 94114
  • Best Time to Visit: 11 am to 05 pm (Monday and Tuesday Closed)
  • Ticket Price: $10
  • Contact Number: (415) 621-1107

Note*: Entry is free for all visitors on the first Saturday of the month.

The de Young Museum

The de Young Museum

The de Young Museum is one of the best fine art museums in San Francisco. This public museum first opened on March 23, 1895, to promote fine art on the global stage.

Artists from different countries come here to see the work of various artists work on American Arts, international contemporary art, textiles, and costumes. The de Young Museum has a splendid collection of African art, American art, Graphic art, and sculptures. 

  • Location: 50 Hagiwara Tea Garden Drive, San Francisco, California, USA
  • Best Time of Visit: 09:30 am to 05:15 pm (Monday Closed)
  • Ticket Price: $15 (Free for Members)
  • Contact Number: (415) 750-3600

Asian Art Museum 

Asian Art Museum 

The Asian Art Museum is one of the best San Francisco art Museums which promote Asian art in American cities. It was founded in 1966 to support and promote Asian artists and their artwork at the global level. It has 18,000 collections of artwork, and many of them are 6000 years old. 

Asian Art Museum is currently operated by the Society for Asian Art. This art gallery has an enormous collection of South Asian, Korean, Chinese, Japanese, Iranian, Central Asian, and Southeast Asian art. 

  • Location: 200 Larkin St, San Francisco, CA 94102, United States
  • Best Time to Visit: 10 am to 05 pm
  • Ticket Price: $10
  • Contact Number: 415-581-3500

San Francisco Museum of Modern Art

San Francisco Museum of Modern Art

The San Francisco Museum of Modern Art is one of the most stunning and prevalent modern art museums in the world. It has the finest collection of contemporary and modern artwork. It was founded in 1935 and designed by famous architect Sir Mario Botta. 

SFMOMA is just five minutes walk away from the Contemporary Jewish Museum. You will find a marvelous collection of many renowned artists like Henri Matisse, Jean Metzinger, Paul Klee, Marcel Duchamp, Andy Warhol, Jackson Pollock, Richard Diebenkorn, Clyfford Still, Dorothea Lange, and Ansel Adams. 

  • Location: 51 3rd St, San Francisco, CA 94103, United States
  • Best Time to Visit: 10 am to 05 pm
  • Ticket Price:  $25 
  • Contact Number:  415.357.4000

The Walt Disney Family Museum

The Walt Disney Family Museum

The Walt Disney Family Museum is highly popular among kids and their guardians. This museum beautifully depicts the history and legacy of Walt Disney. 

The Walt Disney Family Museum is spread over a 40,000 square feet area. It was founded by Diane Disney Miller in 2009. It is a great center of entertainment, fun, knowledge, and virtual events. 

  • Location: 04 Montgomery St, San Francisco, CA 94129, United States
  • Best Time to Visit: 10 am to 05:30 pm (Monday to Wednesday Closed)  
  • Ticket Price: $25
  • Contact Number: 415-345-6800

Cartoon Art Museum 

Cartoon Art Museum 

Cartoon Art Museum is yet another fun station for kids and youngsters. This art museum is unique in itself because the Cartoon Art Museum is primarily concerned with the art of comics and cartoons. 

It is the only museum in the Western United States that is dedicated to all forms of cartoon art and artists.

Do you know the Cartoon Art Museum hosts nine to twelve exhibitions annually? It also offers lectures to students on animation and cartoons with the help of a research library and bookstores. 

  • Location: 781 Beach Street, San Francisco, California
  • Best Time to Visit: 11 am to 05 pm (Wednesday Closed)
  • Ticket Price: Free admission
  • Contact Number: 415-227-8666

San Francisco Railway Museum 

San Francisco Railway Museum 

San Francisco Railway Museum is one of the best in San Francisco. This small but picturesque museum features exhibits on the antique streetcars of the F Market & Wharves and national landmark cable cars that continue to run along the city’s major arteries.

If you are looking for a family fun place, San Francisco Railway Museum would be ideal for you. It was founded in 2006 to preserve the historical cable cars of San Francisco. 

  • Location: 77 Steuart St, San Francisco, CA 94105, United States
  • Best Time to Visit: 12 pm to 04 pm
  • Ticket Price: Free
  • Contact Number: 415-974-1948

San Francisco Cable Car Museum

 Cable Car Museum

San Francisco cable car museum is one of the unique museums in San Francisco, California, USA. This museum is free to the public and first established in 1853. 

This stunning rail museum contains historical and explanatory exhibits on the San Francisco cable car system, which can itself be regarded as a working museum. 

  • Location: 1201 Mason Street San Francisco, California, United States
  • Best Time to Visit: 10 am to 04 pm
  • Ticket Price: Free admission 
  • Contact Number: 415-474-1887

Children’s Creativity Museum

Children's Creativity Museum

To promote the importance of creative skills and empower the creativity of children, the Children’s Creativity Museum was founded on October 31, 1998. The Children’s Creativity Museum is a hands-on multi-media art and technology experience designed to build creative confidence in children ages 2-12. This creative museum hosts several programs to boost the creative skills of children. 

  • Location: 221 Fourth Street, San Francisco, CA 94103
  • Best Time to Visit: Saturday to Sunday 10 am to 12:30 pm, 01:30 pm to 04 pm
  • Ticket Price: $15 
  • Contact Number: 415-820-3320

California Historical Society

California Historical Society

California Historical Society is one of the iconic landmarks in California in terms of Museums. This historical society is just 3 minutes away from the Contemporary Jewish Museum. It was founded by a group of noted Californian intellectuals from Santa Clara University

Their collection represents the economic, political, social, environmental, and cultural heritage of California. 

  • Location: 678 Mission St, San Francisco, CA 94105, United States
  • Best Time to Visit: 12 pm to 05:30 pm
  • Ticket Price: $10
  • Contact Number:  415-357-1848

Contemporary Jewish Museum

Contemporary Jewish Museum

Contemporary Jewish Museum is one of the best museums in San Francisco. This Jewish museum is unique due to its Jewish influence on English society. It was first founded in 1984 at the historic Jessie Street Substation. It hosts a broad array of exhibitions each year in collaboration with other institutions.

  • Location: 736 Mission Street, San Francisco, California, United States
  • Best Time to Visit: 11 am to 05 pm
  • Ticket Price: $14-$16
  • Contact Number: 415-655-7800

California Academy of Sciences

California Academy of Sciences

California Academy of Science is known as the best San Francisco museum of science. It has Postmodern Architecture, Futurist architecture, and Expressionist architecture that attracts millions of visitors annually.  

This science research center and natural history museum of California is the largest natural science museum in the world.  

  • Location: 55 Music Concourse Dr, San Francisco, CA 94118, United States
  • Best Time to visit: 09:30 am to 05 pm 
  • Ticket Price: $34
  • Contact Number: 415-379-8000

Museum of the African Diaspora

Museum of the African Diaspora

The Museum of the African Diaspora is yet another picturesque Museum in San Francisco. It represents the art, culture, and history of the African Diaspora. Among international tourists, the Museum of the African Diaspora is a great center of knowledge, fun, events, and exhibitions. This museum has massive collections of tribal African arts and crafts and attracts many prominent artists from around the world to get inspiration for their artwork. 

  • Location: 685 Mission St, San Francisco, CA 94105, United States
  • Best Time to Visit: 10 am to 06 pm (Monday-Tuesday Closed)
  • Ticket Price: $12
  • Contact Number: 415-358-7200

Oakland Aviation Museum

Oakland Aviation Museum

Oakland Aviation Museum is an astonishing museum dedicated to aviation programs. It was previously known as Western Aerospace Museum and was founded in the year 1891 by Ronald Theodore Reuther. Did you know Oakland Aviation Museum has over thirty modern and vintage airplanes, including military and civilian? 

  • Location: 8252 Earhart Rd, Oakland, CA 94621, United States
  • Best Time to Visit: 10 am to 04 pm (Monday and Tuesday Closed)
  • Ticket Price: $15
  • Contact Number: (510) 638-7100

The Mexican Museum

The Mexican Museum

The Mexican Museum is one of the best San Francisco museums of Mexican and modern art. This marvelous museum exhibits the aesthetic expression of Chicano, Latino, Mexican-American, and Mexican people. The massive collection of 16,000 plus objects of Pre-Hispanic, Latino Modern, Chicano Contemporary, and colonial art attracts various artists from different corners of the world. 

  • Location:  649 Mission St #419, San Francisco, CA 94105, United States
  • Best Time to Visit: 10 am to 04 pm
  • Ticket Price: Free admission
  • Contact Number: 415-202-9700

Pacific Pinball Museum

Pacific Pinball Museum

Pacific Pinball Museum is one of the major attractions of San Francisco. If you want to explore some unusual places in California, Pacific Pinball Museum is best suited to you.  It was founded in 2004 with a 7,000 square feet area. 

This museum exhibits 90 playable pinball machines and additional static display pins ranging from 1879 until the modern-day. Pacific Pinball Museum is the most picturesque museum with vibrant graphics and interior. 

  • Location: 1510 Webster St, Alameda, CA 94501, United States
  • Best Time to Visit: 11 am to 10 pm  (Monday Closed)
  • Ticket Price: $20
  • Contact Number: 510-769-1349

International Art Museum of America

International Art Museum of America

This stunning art museum is one of the best art museums in San Francisco. The entrance of this museum is breathtaking, which makes it more interesting to visit. There is a pond, waterfall, a pagoda-roofed gazebo, imitation rock formations, and a treehouse sculpture designed by artist Steve Blanchard at the main entrance of the International Art Museum of America. 

  • Location: 1023 Market St, San Francisco, CA 94103, United States
  • Best Time to Visit: 10 am to 05 pm (Monday Closed)
  • Ticket Price: Free 
  • Contact Number: 415-376-6344

San Francisco Fire Department Museum

San Francisco Fire Department Museum

Unique but interesting Fire museum in San Francisco, San Francisco Fire Department Museum is a public museum with antique fire engines, SFFD memorabilia, extinguishers, and helmets. It exhibits the rich history of firefighters dating back to1849. 

  • Location: 655 Presidio Ave, San Francisco, CA 94115, United States
  • Best Time to Visit: 10 am to 05 pm
  • Ticket Price: Free
  • Contact Number: 415-558-3546

Museum of 3D Illusions

Museum of 3D Illusions

Museum of 3D Illusions is the most stunning and advanced 3D illusion museum in the world. This fascinating museum is highly popular among youngsters as it is a great center of the fun, entertainment, knowledge, and events. 

This place is best for your Instagram feed. The Museum of 3D Illusions is one of the most instagrammable places in San Francisco. So, click as many images as you can, and upload them on your social media account to get more likes and comments. 

  • Location: 55-61 Jefferson St, San Francisco, CA 94133
  • Best Time to Visit: 12 pm to 07 pm 
  • Ticket Price: $80
  • Contact Number:  888-386-5585

Randall Museum

Randall Museum

This museum is dedicated to science, nature, and arts. Located in Central San Francisco, Randall Museum is a children’s museum spread over 16 acres of land. 

If you are in San Francisco with your kids and family, bring them here, they will surely love the place. It has an indoor theatre, Canteen, art gallery, woodshop, and ceramics studios. 

  • Location: 99 Museum Way, San Francisco, CA 94114, United States
  • Best Time to Visit:  10 am to 05 pm (Sunday and Monday Closed)
  • Ticket Price: Free admission
  • Contact Number: 415-554-9600

San Francisco has multiple stunning museums. It is quite difficult to cover those museums in a single place. That is why we have shared the 20 best Museums in San Francisco with you. 

These are the most popular and most visited museums by both local and international tourists. So, whenever you make a plan to visit San Francisco’s Museums, try to cover these places with your kids and family. 

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