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Culture Things To Do

Check Out These 8 Museums Open For San Diego Museum Month

By Arianna Gary

Check Out These 8 Museums Open For San Diego Museum Month

Ready to explore?

San Diego is home to dozens of museums of art, culture, history, science, and nature. Every February, the San Diego Museum Council presents a special program for locals and visitors to re-explore their favorite museums and discover some new ones. While Museum Month 2021 may look different this year, there are still plenty of cultural experiences lined up for San Diegans to enjoy.

This year, the San Diego Museum Council has organized lots of fun programs that you can enjoy from home including virtual activities, behind-the-scenes tours, and other special activities (to be announced). And now that California’s stay-at-home order has been lifted, San Diegans can again enjoy some of the city’s amazing museum spaces in-person, just in time for the start of San Diego Museum Month 2021!

Check out these member museums that are open for in-person visits this February:

1. Barona Cultural Center & Museum

The Barona Cultural Center & Museum has over 3,000 artifacts, listening alcoves, photographic displays and archives dedicated to preserving the history and culture of the Kumeyaay/Diegueño Nation.

Hours: Thursday – Friday 12pm – 5pm, Saturday 10am – 4pm

Location: 1095 Barona Road

Admission: free

2. Bonita Museum and Cultural Center

This museum boasts over 2,000 historical objects that highlight the culture, history, art, crafts, and aesthetic facets of Bonita and El Rancho de la Nación. Exhibitions currently available for viewing include Sine Kwento and the history collections.

Hours: Wednesday – Saturday 10am – 4pm

Location: 4355 Bonita Road, Bonita

Admission: donation-based

3. Japanese Friendship Garden

This museum provides guests with an immersive experience into Japanese culture, with cultural exhibits as well as traditional Japanese gardens. Currently open with limited access are the Koi Pond in the upper garden as well as the Kannon Bosatsu in the lower garden.

Hours: 10am – 6pm

Location: 2215 Pan American Road. E

Admission: General $12, Military/Seniors/Students $10

4. Lux Art Institute

This museum dedicated to educating the public about all aspects and stages of the creative process is currently open for outdoor exhibitions. The next exhibition features resident artist Beatriz Cortez and invited artists Christian Tedeschi, rafa esparza, Kang Seung Lee, Pavithra Prasad, and Candice Lin.

Hours: Thursday – Saturday 2pm – 5pm (by reservation only)

Location: 1550 S. El Camino Real, Encinitas

Admission: free

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5. San Diego Botanic Garden

This local oasis features 37 acres of gardens and four miles of walking trails to explore. Tickets must be purchased in advance – no walk-ups will be accepted at this time.

Hours: Wednesday – Sunday 10am – 5pm

Location: 300 Quail Gardens Drive, Encinitas

Admission: Adults $18, Seniors/Active Military $12, Youth 3-17 $10, SD Museum Council Members $5

6. The San Diego Museum of Art (May S. Marcy Sculpture Garden)

While the museum portion of this institution remains closed, the Sculpture Garden will be open to the public starting January 30. Visitors can enjoy many 20th century sculptures and enjoy the lush landscaping with views of Balboa Park’s California Tower.

Hours: Daily 10am – 5pm (when no private events are occurring)

Location: 1450 El Prado, Balboa Park (behind the Sculpture Court)

Admission: free

7. Tijuana Estuary Visitor Center (Trails)

The visitor center remains closed, but visitors can still go walking, hiking or biking on Tijuana River National Estuarine Research reserve’s many trails. Trails currently open include River Mouth Trail, Visitor Center Trail, N. and S. McCoy Trail, and Clapper Rail Trail.

Hours: Daily 7am – sunset 

Location: 301 Caspian Way, Imperial Beach

Admission: free

8. USS Midway Museum

Tour this historic ship’s Hangar Deck and Flight Deck as you learn about more than 30 restored Navy aircrafts. Guests will also be able to enjoy audio tours, souvenir photos and the gift shop. The museum will be open starting on February 1.

Hours: Daily 10am – 5pm (last admission 4pm)

Location: 910 North Harbor Drive

Admission: Adults $26, Youth 6-12/Veterans $18, USS Midway Members and Pass Holders free

Check here for a full list of the museums that are members of the San Diego Museum Council, and for updates on new openings. Visitors can refer to museum webpages for more information about tickets and safety guidelines.

Want more places to explore? The San Diego Zoo & Safari Park will also reopen this Saturday!

[Featured image: Facebook/Lux Art Institute]