Neon tropics

NightLife Admission: $15 ($12 Academy members)
Planetarium Passes: $3 (more info below)
21+ with ID

Select events subject to premier pricing: $22 ($18 Academy members).


DJ set by Raymond Fernandez


Blue Oasis
African Hall

Secret Garden
East Pavilion

  • At 7:00pm, stop by for a pop-up talk from California Carnivores on some of the world’s most exotic carnivorous plants.
  • At 8:00pm, grab a seat and learn about the role that fungi plays in the tropics of the world with Dr. Jessie Uehling from UC Berkeley.

Beyond The Reef
Coral Reef
6p - 9p
Dive into the deep blue to catch an impromptu performance from the San Francisco Ukulele Rebellion.

The Archipelago
Project Lab & Swamp
6p - 10p
Chat with experts from Stanford, UC Berkeley, and our very own Academy on a variety of subjects including tropical forest conservation, archaeological research, the legacy of nuclear testing, and more. Plus see the flora of the tropics in a whole new light with photography and tropical plant inspired installations by LA artist, Maggie West.



  • Hurry! Last entry for our Rainforest dome is at 7:45 pm. Please note: drinks are not allowed inside the Rainforest exhibit.
  • Thirsty? Each bar area features a unique seasonal cocktail—there are multiple bars throughout the museum.
  • Special programs and lectures may have limited seating and admission will also be made available to visitors on a first-come, first-served basis.



  • Planetarium passes are required for the 7:30, 8:30, and 9:30 pm shows
  • Passes are $3 each and may be purchased online or at the ticket window. Since shows do sell out, we always recommend buying in advance.
  • The 6:30 pm live show is always free. Seats are available on a first-come, first-served basis.
  • Please arrive at the planetarium 15 minutes before your ticketed showtime for seating. We run a tight spaceship!



  • A variety of food options are available at NightLife from 6:00-9:30 pm, including The Academy Cafe and The Academy Cafe Food Cart located in the front lobby.
  • Enjoy a different fresh seasonal "craft on draft" cocktail at each NightLife bar area designed by our resident mixologist Shane McKnight!

All bars accept cash and credit cards.


Planetarium Shows

6:30 pm

Explore the immense scale of the known Universe in this live presentation that leaves Earth far behind.

7:30 pm, 8:30 pm

Embark on a journey into the hidden world of coral reefs.

9:30 pm

Explore the immense scale of the known Universe in this live presentation that leaves Earth far behind.

Upcoming NightLife Events

July 11th at 6:00 pm

NightLife kicks off its sixth annual NightLife LIVE summer music series with a performance from
Men I Trust.

July 18th at 6:00 pm

Follow the brewing process from botanical inception to foamy finish with a pop-up beer garden and more.

July 25th at 6:00 pm

Be the first to see the Academy’s sixth annual BigPicture Natural World Photography Competition exhibit.

August 8th at 6:00 pm

The Marías perform at our 2nd installment of NightLife LIVE, in Partnership with Outside Lands Music Festival.