NHM, including the Spider Pavilion and Nature Gardens, is closed until further notice. View our COVID-19 Safety Guidelines for more information.
Field Trip FAQs
See below for answers to our most frequently asked questions!
If you can't find the information you're looking for, please contact our Call Center at firstname.lastname@example.org or 213.763.3529.
California accredited schools bringing Pre K-12 grade students qualify for a FREE field trip to the Natural History Museum!
Field trip reservations apply to groups of 10 or more students who attend an onsite, accredited academic institution at least three days a week. Groups that do not qualify for a school field trip are welcome to visit on Free Tuesdays or book through our Group Sales department to receive a special group rate. We also offer free admission to LA County residents after school from 3-5pm, Monday through Friday. Unsure if you qualify? Contact us at email@example.com or 213.763.3529.
Admission is free for all students and teachers (including school administrative staff, teaching assistants, and one-to-one aides) and up to one chaperone for every five students. Chaperones beyond the 1:5 ratio are still welcome, however, they will need to purchase a discounted $12 chaperone ticket upon arrival (exemptions apply to Title I schools). We cannot guarantee admission for all adults to our add-on programs, performances, Butterfly or Spider Pavilions, or exhibitions. Chaperones may need to purchase tickets to participate in these programs with their group.
Yes! Making a reservation in advance ensures a spot on the day of your visit, gives you the opportunity to sign up for free add-on reservations, and expedites your check-in process. We ask that all schools fill out and submit an online reservation request form at least three weeks in advance of your visit. Please allow us time to process your request; we do our best to accommodate last-minute requests, but we cannot guarantee availability. If you are trying to schedule multiple visits, each trip will require a separate online request form. We will provide free general admission to any school visitors that are walk-ins.
We request that groups submit at least three weeks in advance of their first choice date. If you are interested in Guided Programs, Dinosaur Encounters, Special Exhibits, or a visit in March, April, or May, we recommend submitting your field trip request form as early as possible for the best selection of available dates and programs. These free reservations are extremely popular and fill up quickly! Registration opens August 15 for the 2019-2020 school year.
As of the 2018-2019 school year, all LAUSD schools can book field trips directly through our online booking form. Want to bring the museum to you? Learn more about our Mobile Museums.
The date you have chosen may be at capacity or reserved for a special event. But don’t worry! The museum's Call Center can help you figure out the next best available date for your field trip. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 213.763.3529 to connect with our Call Center staff.
Yes, we do reserve a limited number of spaces for school groups who can only visit on the weekends. Please note that all weekend field trips to the Natural History Museum are self-guided and we do not offer add-on reservations for weekend visits.
We require a minimum of 10 students for a field trip. We ask that groups bringing 6th-12th grade students limit their student numbers to 150 students per school per day. Exceptions may apply, contact our Call Center at email@example.com or 213.763.3529 for more information.
We require a minimum of one adult chaperone for every ten students and a maximum of one to five. Chaperones beyond the 1:5 ratio are still welcome, however, they will need to purchase a discounted $12.00 chaperone ticket upon arrival (exemptions apply to Title I schools). Due to capacity limitations for certain programs and special exhibits, all of your adults may not be able to participate if you exceed the recommended 1:5 ratio.
We offer an array of educational programs at the Natural History Museum for every grade level and based on state standards. These Field Trip Add-Ons can be provided free of charge with your school’s visit, including Guided Programs with our museum educators, reservations for special exhibits such as the Nature Lab or Pavilions, and live performances such as Dinosaur Encounters. You can request these additional reservations while making your field trip reservation request. All Field Trip Add-Ons are dependent on availability, grade level, and location.
Research shows students learn better and retain more long-term interest when allowed to self-select their museum experiences. Your school will not be assigned a Museum docent during your self-guided field trip, but look for our knowledgeable Gallery Interpreters (full-time Museum educators) and floor volunteers in the Museum. This group of trained educators will be able to provide more information about the Museum's exhibits and a deeper understanding of the Museum's collection. They will be happy to answer all your questions!
Depending on your group size and arrival time, your students can participate in our morning Guided Programs during the programming season (Oct 1 - Jan 31) with advanced registration. Select Guided Programs on your Field Trip Booking Form to request these offerings!
Yes! Please see our Lesson Plans and Activities for free, downloadable activities to utilize on-site during your field trip, as well as suggested pre- and post-visit lesson plans to round out your museum experience. Check out our Before Your Visit page for additional pre-field trip info!
We are so excited that you are bringing your students to the museum for a field trip! With over 35 million objects in our collections, we understand that visiting the museum with a class can be overwhelming. To make the most of your first field trip, we recommend you:
Visit the museum on your own first (without your class)! The Natural History Museums of Los Angeles County offer free admission to teachers every day with school ID.
Dive deeper into our Research & Collections by attending one of our free Educator Workshops, offered almost every month.
Our volunteer docents and Gallery Interpreters will be out on the floor of the museum during the entirety of your visit! They are always willing to answer questions and share information about whichever exhibit hall they may be stationed in. These folks will be wearing either a blue NHM vest or a bright blue t-shirt.
The museum provides a designated section for your school during lunchtime. Your school can eat outside of our South Entrance either on the South Steps or the South Lawn. These spaces can accommodate large school groups.
On very rainy days, we provide indoor lunch areas. We will not let your students eat outside in the rain! Reserve a spot for a lunch area in the museum at check-in on the day of the visit.
With over 35 million objects in the museum's collection, we unfortunately do not have any storage facilities for school lunches! Lunches should be left on the bus, in the car, or securely zipped in backpacks. Food may be purchased to-go from the NHM Grill and eaten in designated areas around the museum, either on the South Steps or the South Lawn.
Schools scheduling field trips to the museums are required to arrange for their own transportation. Unfortunately, we are unable to offer bus scholarships at this time. As an alternative mode of transportation, we recommend the Metro Student Field Trip program as a way to get free public transportation for your classes to visit the museum! Two Metro Expo Line stops are located directly across the street from the museum.
Buses park in Exposition Park Lot 6. Cost for bus parking is $12, cash only; additional charges may apply to charter buses. Personal vehicles or vans can park in the NHM Car Park for $12, with overflow parking available at the California Science Center visitor parking structure for $12.
To cancel a visit, please contact the museum's Call Center at 213.763.3529 or firstname.lastname@example.org. To reschedule, submit a new online request form. Make sure to have your original order number handy when canceling or rescheduling a field trip!
Note that all existing reservations will be released when your new request is submitted. We do our best to preserve your original schedule, but we cannot guarantee that everything you had scheduled on your first date will be available on your new date. Your new request will be added to the general queue and processed in the order in which it was received. You will receive your updated confirmation within two weeks of submitting your new request.
The museum has provided a lending service in the past. Unfortunately, we do not have a lending service at this time. Learn more about the museum's Research and Collections departments and explore the online collection database. For LAUSD schools, check out our Mobile Museums to bring the museum to your classroom.