San Diego’s Museum Month 2023 is our BIGGEST ever with more than 60 museums, historic sites, gardens, zoo/aquariums and more. There’s so much to see at San Diego Museums, and during the month of February the San Diego Museum Council is making it easy to visit your favorites by offering half-price admission. Plus there are over over a dozen new museums and new features this year to make it even more FUN.
Nautical History Gallery & Museum
Arts District Liberty Station
Located in the historic Dick Laub NTC Command Center at Arts District Liberty Station is the all-new Nautical History Gallery & Museum. This 800 sq. ft. gallery is a panoramic history of the U.S. Navy, its ships and how they have evolved over time from the Revolutionary War period, through the Civil War, into the Spanish-American War, then World War I and World War II, including the beginning of naval aviation. Find the FUN and all the details here.
“The Art of Immortalizing Heroes”
Also on display at the Command Center at Liberty Station is “The Art of Immortalizing Heroes” by Liberty Station resident artist, Joe Pisano, a veteran. The free exhibit is a seven-panel art piece that depicts a number of conflicts – World War I, World War II, the Korean War, Vietnam, Afghanistan and Iraq – along with topics including “Unsung Heroes” and “Funeral Honors.”
Downtown San Diego
The all-new Brain Observatory is located on Broadway, right across the street from Santa Fe Depot in in Downtown San Diego. It’s the “brainchild” of Jacopo Annese. Part laboratory, part museum, the Brain Observatory provides students of diverse socio-economic backgrounds with training and experience. Dr. Annese is creating a world-wide archive of human brains for educational and research purposes.
Water Conservation Garden
El Cajon, CA
Museum Month 2023 also has new ways to get out in the sun and have some FUN! The Water Conservation Garden has nearly six acres of displays that showcase water conservation through a series of beautiful themed gardens, such as a native plant garden and a vegetable garden, as well as how-to displays such as mulch and irrigation exhibits. The Garden also features a native butterfly pavilion that is open spring and summer each year. It’s all half-price with your Museum Month pass this February. Plan your visit and get tickets here.
And we hope you ready to join the Tomatomaniacs and grow great-tasting tomatoes in your own backyard. Tomato-mania is a crazy celebration of America’s favorite garden vegetable happing the Water Conservation Garden on February 24 & 25. Find out more here.
Timken Museum of Art
Balboa Park San Diego
Affectionately called San Diego’s jewel box of fine art, the Timken Museum of Art is back as part of Museum Month after its $3 million, two-year renovation. The Museum is home to the Putnam Foundation’s globally-important collection of European old masters, 19th century American art and Russian icons. The collection also includes the only Rembrandt painting on public display in San Diego. This fine museum provides visitors with an accessible and enriching cultural experience featuring a beautiful collection, intimate surroundings, perennially free admission.
Centro Cultural de la Raza
Balboa Park San Diego
San Diego’s Centro Cultural de la Raza was founded in 1970 as a Chicano Community Cultural Center and functions as an alternative space that encourages and facilitates artistic growth and cultural interchange in the San Diego/Tijuana region. The Centro provides classes and features a dynamic interdisciplinary schedule of events which includes exhibits, musical performances, installation art, readings, receptions, Azteca dance, Teatro Chicana, Ballet Folklorico, film screenings and other events. Explore the FUN at the Centro during Museum Month and participate in the exciting programs. Find out more here.
WorldBeat Cultural Center
Balboa Park San Diego
Housed in a colorfully painted former water tower, WorldBeat Center opened in Balboa Park in 1996. Classes in international dance and drumming are offered year round, along with concerts and lectures. Founded in 1984 as WorldBeat Productions by Executive Director, Makeda Cheatom in San Diego. The WorldBeat Cultural Center serves the community as a non-profit community center, performing arts center for classes and showcasing, museum, gift shop, cafe and outdoor classroom. Find great events like the 42nd Tribute to the Reggae Legends/ Bob Day happening Feb. 19 at the Center.
One WorldBeat Cafe
Located in the WorldBeat Center, its the first all vegan cafe in Balboa Park. Serving Caribbean vegan soul food and alternative health drinks like kombucha on-tap. Come try to some of our popular items like our Jamaican patties, African-Peanut Curry and our Jerk Rasta Burger. Open Friday through Sunday 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Read more here.
Museum of Contemporary Art, La Jolla
La Jolla, CA
MCASD La Jolla quadrupled the size of their gallery space from almost 10,000 square feet to 40,000 square feet during its recent $105 Million renovation. Many of the galleries sport massive ceilings, many as high as 16 feet, and windows that look out to the coast, making the experience something of a surrealist masterpiece. The Museum’s collection embraces artistic innovations from the mid-twentieth century to today with a focus on the ongoing legacies of abstraction in arts of the Americas and Europe. Museum Month is the perfect opportunity to explore newly renovated Museum of Contemporary Art San Diego (MCASD) in La Jolla. Find out more here.
Add a special treat to your next visit to MCASD La Jolla and have breakfast or lunch at the all-new full-service garden café, The Kitchen @MCASD. Read more about the new café in Lori Weisburg’s story in the La Jolla Light or book a table here.
Chicano Park Museum and Cultural Center
After more than six years in the making, the Chicano Park Museum and Cultural Center opened its doors to the community for the first time this last October. The Museum serves as a place to educate the public about Chicano, Latino and Indigenous culture and history. Explore the new museum, find more information and check out exciting and FUN events here.
San Diego Police Museum
Grab the kids and explore half-price FUN at the San Diego Police Museum during Museum Month. From its College Area location at 4710 College Avenue, visitors can tour an impressive collection of police artifacts, historic displays and learn the stories of officers who have served since the late 1800s. Most significantly, the museum is home to a wall of valor honoring officers who gave their lives in the line of duty and another wall of officers who saved the lives of San Diegans. The museum is open Wednesday thru Friday Noon to 4 p.m. and Saturdays from 10 a.m. – 2 p.m.
Pacific Southwest Railway Museum
Come aboard and explore the FUN at the Pacific Southwest Railway Museum Association, Inc. in Campo and its La Mesa Depot Museum during Museum Month 2023. The museums are dedicated to the preservation and interpretation of railroads as they existed in the Pacific Southwest and has more than 120 pieces of equipment and artifacts on display between the two locations. Get half-price admission to the museum and their Golden State Train Excursions at the depot with your Museum Month pass.
This weekend is the perfect time to visit and take the Golden State Excursion in Campo for a fun, 45-minute round-trip ride on the historic San Diego & Arizona Railway with the new Coaster 2103. Coming up April is the special Bunny Train with The Easter Bunny and an Easter Egg hunt. To reserve seats and more go to www.psrm.org.
All-New Digital Pass Available
For the first time in 34 years, the Museum Month digital pass is here! Digital passes are good for up to four (4) people to get half-off admission at more than 60 San Diego County museums now through February 28. Get your digital pass here and just show your phone at any participating museum to get all the FUN at half-price.