Free Museum Admission - San Francisco Only - 10/15: New museum opening; 10/16: Yerba Buena Family Day


Most San Francisco residents know that many museums in the City by the Bay offer one free admission day every month, usually at the beginning of the month. Since I haven't found any post about this, I thought I would post. Tourists should find this list helpful too!

This list will be updated periodically to reflect the latest dates and details. Click on each site for hours. Free days, based on a check of museums' Web sites, are accurate as of 4/30/11.

BANK OF AMERICA MUSEUMS ON US Free admission every first full weekend (Saturday and Sunday) of each month until December 2011 at participating museums nationwide with your Bank of America card and photo ID. Check out the BofA program Web site here for details. For participating San Francisco museums, please see below.

CHECK OUT SAN FRANCISCO FAMILY PASS PROGRAM - Use the family pass to enjoy free admission to many of the San Francisco museums and attractions.


>> Added on 10/2/11 - Friday, October 7, 2011 to Friday, November 11, 2011, Regular Open Hours - California Academy of Sciences Presents: We Salute the US Armed Forces - The Academy is pleased to offer free daytime admission to active-duty and veteran military personnel, in honor of their service to our communities and country. To participate, individuals must show a valid military ID at the ticket window. All accompanying family and friends of the military member can receive a 15% discount on their General Admission tickets. Check here for more details.

>> Added on 9/22/11 - Saturday, October 15, 2011, 3-5pm - International Art Museum of America Grand Opening - Check here for more details. The International Art Museum of America (IAMA) is a public benefit, non-profit, permanent art museum open to the public, located at 1025 Market Street, near 7th Street in the downtown San Francisco Central Market Street area.

>> Added on 9/22/11 - Sunday, October 16, 2011, 11am-4pm - Yerba Buena Family Day - Check here for more details. Four fun museums (Children's Creativity Museum fka Zeum, Contemporary Jewish Museum, Museum of the African Diaspora, San Francisco Museum of Modern Art - SF MOMA), two lively stages, all for free! Click here for the event map.


Every Day
Cable Car Museum (always free)
Golden Gate Fortune Cookie Factory (always free) - Not a museum, but tourists should find this very interesting if they happen to be in Chinatown.
Musee Mechanique - Mechanical Museum (always free) - Used to be at Cliff House.
San Francisco Botanical Garden (always free for SF residents with proof of residency) - Fee for non-San Francisco residents starting 8/1/10, click on link for exact details.
Added 6/11/11 - TCHO Chocolate Factory Tour (always free) - Not a museum, but it gives tours daily at 10:30am and 2pm. TCHO is the only chocolate manufacturer in SF. Reservations required.

Every Monday, Wednesday, Friday - 9am to 10am
Japanese Tea Garden - [unofficial Web site] thanks FatWallet member texascountrymama for the unofficial link

Every Monday through Friday
Wells Fargo Museum (always free)

Every Tuesday through Saturday
Randall Museum (always free)
San Francisco Museum of Craft+Design (always free, donation requested - check with museum first as it does not a permanent location at present)

Every Tuesday through Sunday
Museo ItaloAmericano - Italian American Museum (always free)
San Francisco Railway Museum (always free)

First Tuesday of Each Month - Next One: Tuesday, 10/4
Cartoon Art Museum
Conservatory of Flowers
de Young Museum
Legion of Honor
San Francisco Museum of Modern Art - SF MOMA - Active U.S. military members (with valid military ID. Includes active U.S. Coast Guard and activated National Guard or Reservists) are always free.
SF Camerawork
Yerba Buena Center for the Arts Galleries

First Wednesday of Each Month - Next One: Wednesday, 10/5
GLBT History Museum - Added 4/30/11
San Francisco Zoo - Free for SF residents only. Proof of residency required.

Third Wednesday of Each Month - Next One: Wednesday, 10/19
California Academy of Sciences - Click here for the 2011 California Academy of Sciences Neighborhood Free Days Calendar for San Francisco residents.

Every Thursday through Sunday
San Francisco Fire Museum (always free)

First Thursday of Each Month - Next One: Thursday, 10/6
Chinese Historical Society of America

Every Friday
Federal Reserve Bank (always free) - 12noon

Every First Full Weekend - Saturday and Sunday of Each Month until December 2011* - Next One: 10/1 and 10/2
*with Bank of America card and photo ID only - check BofA's Museums on Us Web site for more details
Contemporary Jewish Museum - does not have a monthly free day outside of this program
de Young Museum
Legion of Honor
Museum of the African Diaspora - does not have a monthly free day outside of this program
Zeum - new for 2011! Does not have a monthly free day outside of this program - Name change to Children's Creativity Museum on October 15, 2011.

First Sunday of Each Month - Next One: Sunday, 10/2
Asian Art Museum - Members of the U.S. Armed Forces (with valid I.D.) plus one guest are always free.

Please PM me any additions and inaccuracies.

added on Sunday, October 2, 2011

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