Pacific Grove Museum: Area natural history comes alive
OK, I’ll admit this straight out: When we venture to another city, museums aren’t usually the top of our list. There is normally so much to see, experience and live on the streets and outdoors. But sometimes a museum just stands out. Take the Pacific Grove Museum of Natural History in Monterey County for one.
The museum is a little place with a huge heart that invites visitors – adults and kids alike – to not just look but to touch, hear, play and feel. Dang amazing really for a museum that opened in 1883 and still, in part, exists in one of its original historic buildings on a side street in Pacific Grove.
Living showcase at the Natural History Museum
This is a showcase of nature and history, birds and wildlife, flowers and geology of the Central Coast of California. Wondered about the Monarch Butterflies and their annual migration to Pacific Grove? Don’t just look at pretty pictures, come to the Pacific Grove Museum to learn about Monarch Butterflies see what it’s all about.
Bears? Yup, a big stuffed one in the main exhibit room that looks ready to pounce. Orca whales? Push buttons to hear a number of different songs and what they mean.
Flowers? Aside from the Annual Wildflower Show in mid-April (2015 was the 54th year!) that HI Travel Tales visited and wrote about, there is an intimate native plants and flowers garden on the grounds. But it’s not your everyday run-of-the-mill garden that only attracts your grandmother. It has arbors and benches and even a most amazing so-called “Spirit Nest” — a hanging circular entwinement of branches that begs to be sat in (definitely encouraged).
Hands-on fun for kids and adults at the Pacific Grove Museum
This museum is hands-on to the nth degree. Kids can go on a scavenger hunt where they have to track down answers and find things in the museum … like a whale’s eyeball! Once completed, they take the form to the Pacific Grove Museum gift shop (which in itself has a really cool collection of goodies) and they get to pick out a small piece of
Pyrite (a.k.a. fool’s good) to take home. All included in the admission price. In the native plant garden, they (you too!) can dig around in a “fossil pit” and find a real fossil to take home.
Did we say yet this museum is cool? According to the Pacific Grove Museum’s website, its mission is to inspire discovery, wonder, and stewardship of our natural world.
Click here to see hours, get directions and find a link to admission prices.
Discover more things to do in Monterey
Our Most Recent Travel Stories
When the CDC gave the green light to fully vaccinated travelers to begin hitting the road and flying again, the announcement generated numerous questions about travel preparation, planning and COVID protection. This checklist for vaccinated travelers is how to start planning your next trip.
The Hilton Palm Springs Resort is an ideal place to stay if you want to be within walking distance of The Vineyard Shopping Center, the Palm Springs Art Museum, and downtown Palm Springs.
Every two years, Desert X coordinates an outdoor art exhibit like none other. Huge, thought-provoking art statements dot the desert and cities around Greater Palm Springs in Coachella Valley, complementing all the other outdoor art in the area.