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Museum of Natural History

Certificate of Excellence
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Address: Macbride Hall, University of Iowa, Iowa City, IA 52242
Phone Number:
+1 319-335-0606
10:00 - 17:00
Closed now
See all hours
Sun 13:00 - 17:00
Tue - Wed 10:00 - 17:00
Thu 10:00 - 20:00
Fri - Sat 10:00 - 17:00

Explore our world at the University of Iowa Museum of Natural History-...

Explore our world at the University of Iowa Museum of Natural History- Iowa’s gateway to the global environment for over 150 years. Walk through 500 million years of our natural and cultural heritage, culminating in the landscape we see today and how it affects the story of agriculture. Discover the adaptation and diversity of birds and mammals around the planet.

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TripAdvisor Reviewer Highlights

Read all 73 reviews
Visitor rating
  • 24
  • 38
    Very good
  • 6
  • 2
  • 1
A surprising amount of info

I went on a Thursday where the museum is open late. Admission of course is free, but I was unsure of what to expect. I was actually pleasantly surprised at the exhibit quality and... read more

Reviewed 31 December 2016
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73 Reviews from our TripAdvisor Community

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Showing 71: English reviews
Johnston, Iowa
Level Contributor
189 reviews
89 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 29 helpful votes
Reviewed 4 weeks ago

This is a free attraction so I wasn't sure what to expect. Turns out there was a lot of interesting state history and displays with a whole variety of stuffed animals inside.

Thank Peanut977
Level Contributor
104 reviews
67 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 23 helpful votes
Reviewed 31 December 2016

I went on a Thursday where the museum is open late. Admission of course is free, but I was unsure of what to expect. I was actually pleasantly surprised at the exhibit quality and the overall display of global and Iowa history. The museum is spread between the 1st and 3rd floors, so the layout might be a little confusing... More 

Thank SimpsonTide985
Blue Grass, Iowa
Level Contributor
27 reviews
11 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 7 helpful votes
Reviewed 18 November 2016

Interesting museum. Lots of good information and artifacts. You will learn about what Iowa was like thousands of years ago. The giant sloth was pretty neat.

Thank TrishaMarie80
Level Contributor
11 reviews
3 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 8 November 2016

This place is a great, free trip for some quick history. It has a nice mix of everything without specializing in much. It does get a bit heavy foot traffic during class hours due to the building doubling as a lecture hall, but it is worth the trip. There is also a locally-adored stuffed sloth hiding around one of the... More 

Thank Jered A
Cedar Rapids, Iowa
Level Contributor
252 reviews
148 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 18 helpful votes
Reviewed 30 October 2016

The bird area is unlike any that I have seen before. It was better than the Smithsonian museum for that area. Great trip for kids right here in eastern iowa to introduce them to a natural museum that you do not have to go to Chicago or other City 200 miles away. a 1000 birds, hundreds or mammals, fossils, and... More 

Thank cdhcch
Level Contributor
15 reviews
9 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
Reviewed 18 October 2016

No this certainly isn't the Field Museum of Chicago, or the Natural History Museum of NYC. In fact it's not even a tenth the size of those institutions. But this institution was founded in 1858 and does update it's displays every decade or so. Well worth stopping in to introduce science to children or just refresh your own memories on... More 

1 Thank Christopher B
Punta Allen, Mexico
Level Contributor
169 reviews
60 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 69 helpful votes
Reviewed 23 September 2016

Exhibits are rarely updated but, there is much to see. Great job on displays indigenous to the Midwest. Be sure to strike up a conversation with a Grad student or other faculty member to enhance your experience.

Thank jacjsc
Level Contributor
6 reviews
3 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
Reviewed 19 September 2016

As my title says, this place is a must if you are around. No fee to enter and it hosts a great collection of animals, birds, etc. It consists of several floors make sure to visit each one.

Thank Michel E
Level Contributor
10 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
Reviewed 23 August 2016

This is a great natural history museum, the price is right, free, and the displays of birds, Native American habitat, mammals, animals, even an uninhabited island, are interestingly displayed. We took our children there and recently took our granddaughter and it is still entertaining. With three floors, there are ample displays. Being in downtown Iowa City, there is shopping and... More 

Thank Jim E
Wausau, Wisconsin
Level Contributor
30 reviews
8 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
Reviewed 19 August 2016 via mobile

If you like nature and history, this is a real find. The museum is divided into various segments on 3 floors and all Free. Really well done. Museum is on the campus of the University of Iowa with parking available nearby, a short walk.

Thank bluejay6767

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