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Art for Everyone: Bay Area Museum Free Admission Days Guide (Part One)

In the vibrant cultural landscape of the San Francisco Bay Area, visiting museums and art galleries doesn't have to be expensive. Many renowned institutions offer free admission on specific days, making it easier than ever to immerse yourself in art, history, and natural wonders. Whether you're a local resident or a visitor, you can take advantage of these opportunities to enrich your understanding of diverse cultures and artistic expressions. Below is a guide to some of the top museums and their free admission days.


woman-in-art-museum

Museums and Free Admission Days:


Asian Art Museum

This museum, one of the largest in the Western world dedicated to Asian art, houses over 17,000 artworks spanning 6,000 years of history. Additional fees may apply for special collections.

  • Address: 200 Larkin Street, San Francisco

  • Free Admission Day: First Sunday of each month


Upcoming Free Dates:

  • July 7, 2024

  • August 4, 2024

  • September 1, 2024

  • October 6, 2024

  • November 3, 2024

  • December 1, 2024


Legion of Honor

Located in a stunning spot overlooking the Golden Gate Bridge, this museum showcases ancient and European art spanning 4,000 years. Additional fees may apply for special exhibitions.

  • Address: 100 34th Ave, San Francisco

  • Free Admission Day: First Tuesday of each month (open to all), every Saturday (open to Bay Area residents with valid ID)


Upcoming Free Dates:

  • July 2, 2024

  • August 6, 2024

  • September 3, 2024

  • October 1, 2024

  • November 5, 2024

  • December 3, 2024



de Young Museum

One of the most visited art museums in the United States, the de Young features American art from the 17th to the 20th century, as well as art from Central and South America, the Pacific, and an impressive textiles collection. Free admission applies to permanent galleries only; special exhibitions may require an additional fee.

  • Address: 50 Hagiwara Tea Garden Drive, Golden Gate Park, San Francisco

  • Free Admission Day: First Tuesday of each month (open to all), every Saturday (open to Bay Area residents with valid ID)


Upcoming Free Dates:

  • July 2, 2024

  • August 6, 2024

  • September 3, 2024

  • October 1, 2024

  • November 5, 2024

  • December 3, 2024


Museum of Craft and Design

This museum features non-traditional art forms such as furniture, kinetic sculptures, and jewelry. Tickets on suggested donation days are available at the front desk only, not online.

  • Address: 2569 Third Street, San Francisco

  • Free Admission Day: Every Wednesday (suggested donation day)


Upcoming Free Dates:

Every Wednesday


Museum of the African Diaspora (MoAD)

MoAD offers free admission on "Thrive @ MoAD Community Day." The museum is dedicated to sharing the art and stories of our common African heritage with audiences worldwide.

  • Address: 685 Mission St (at 3rd), San Francisco (ground floor of the St. Regis Hotel)

  • Free Admission Day: Second Saturday of each month (11am-6pm)


Upcoming Free Dates:

  • July 13, 2024

  • August 10, 2024

  • September 14, 2024

  • October 12, 2024

  • November 9, 2024

  • December 14, 2024


Oakland Museum of California

Focused on California’s art, history, and natural sciences, the Oakland Museum spans four city blocks in Oakland and tells the story of California. A $6 fee may apply for special exhibitions in the Great Hall. Note that "first" Sundays may be adjusted for major holidays.

  • Address: 1000 Oak Street, Oakland

  • Free Admission Day: First Sunday of each month


Upcoming Free Dates:

  • July 7, 2024

  • August 4, 2024

  • September 1, 2024

  • October 6, 2024

  • November 3, 2024

  • December 1, 2024



Contemporary Jewish Museum

The Contemporary Jewish Museum engages audiences of all backgrounds through dynamic exhibitions and programs that explore contemporary Jewish culture, history, art, and ideas. The building itself is a work of art. Open every Friday from 11am to 5pm; please note that the museum is closed on many holidays.

  • Address: 736 Mission Street, San Francisco

  • Free Admission Day: First Friday of each month


Upcoming Free Dates:

  • July 5, 2024

  • August 2, 2024

  • September 6, 2024

  • October 4, 2024

  • November 1, 2024

  • December 6, 2024



SFMOMA
Photo Source: SFMOMA

San Francisco Museum of Modern Art (SFMOMA)

While SFMOMA doesn't have regular free days, it offers free admission to Bay Area residents on the first Thursday of each month. Additionally, youth 18 and under are free every day, and there are occasional free family days and community days. The museum features over 45,000 square feet of public space open daily from 9:30am, with last admission half an hour before closing.

  • Address: 151 Third Street, San Francisco

  • Free Admission Day: First Thursday of each month for Bay Area residents, with occasional free family days and community days; youth 18 and under are free every day


Upcoming Free Dates:

  • July 4, 2024

  • August 1, 2024

  • September 5, 2024

  • October 3, 2024

  • November 7, 2024

  • December 2, 2024


BAMPFA Berkeley Art Museum

BAMPFA is the visual arts center of UC Berkeley, dedicated to inspiring imagination and sparking critical dialogue through art and film. Regular free days are the first Thursday of each month, though some exceptions may apply.

  • Address: 2155 Center Street, Berkeley

  • Free Admission Day: First Thursday of each month


Upcoming Free Dates:

  • July 4, 2024

  • August 1, 2024

  • September 5, 2024

  • October 3, 2024

  • November 7, 2024

  • December 2, 2024


San Francisco Airport Aviation Museum

Located within San Francisco International Airport, the Aviation Museum showcases the history and technology of aviation. This museum is free to the public every day, making it an ideal choice for those waiting for a flight or interested in aviation.

  • Address: SFO Airport International Terminal, Departure Level 3, near the Security CheckpointFree Admission Day: Every day


Watch the video of Bay Area wonders and experience the dual charm of aviation and culture together!




Taking advantage of the free admission days at Bay Area museums allows you to experience a wealth of culture, art, and history without increasing your budget. These opportunities are perfect for residents and visitors alike, providing a deeper exploration and understanding of this vibrant region. Remember the free admission dates for each museum and plan a trip full of cultural and educational experiences!



England Ireland Cultural Tour

Are you looking for more diverse cultural experiences beyond the museums in the Bay Area? Join KTSF host Jiayu Jeng on an exclusive cultural journey through the England and Ireland, exploring both iconic landmarks and hidden gems. Tour London's Big Ben, Westminster Abbey, and Buckingham Palace, and indulge in authentic English afternoon tea in Oxford. Visit Windsor Castle and the British Museum, stroll through Cambridge University, and discover real-life locations from the "Harry Potter" films. Experience the grandeur of Edinburgh Castle and Holyrood Palace, along with the Titanic Belfast in Glasgow and Belfast. This journey also includes behind-the-scenes visits, in-depth conversations with key figures, and professional photography to capture unforgettable memories.


Delve into the unique history and rich culture of England and Ireland, from academic institutions and historic castles to literary landmarks and scenic attractions. Interact with locals, savor authentic British cuisine, and enjoy the true essence of these captivating regions. Guided by Jiayu Jeng, this trip promises to immerse you in a cultural experience beyond traditional sightseeing, leaving you with lasting memories.


Book your itinerary here 👉 [England Ireland Cultural Tour]




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