The classic 1905 Marston House was built for noted civic leader and merchant, George W. Marston, known as the “Father of Balboa Park,” and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Designed by renowned local architects William Hebbard and Irving Gill, it sits on five acres of landscaped English and California influenced gardens. Multiple walking tours of surrounding historic neighborhoods start from this location as well. Group tours are especially popular and it is one of the top wedding sites in the region.
At the science center, you can explore and investigate more than 100 interactive exhibits that pique your curiosity and become immersed in an IMAX film adventure that shows the wonders of the planet—and beyond—in the Eugene Heikoff and Marilyn Jacobs Heikoff Giant Dome Theater. For young science enthusiasts, the Fleet hosts school field trips, science workshops and educational camps. For adults, we offer events like Fleet Night of Science and community events, such as Two Scientists Walk Into a Bar.
The History Center presents dynamic, engaging exhibitions highlighting what makes San Diego unique and the region’s emerging role in the 21st century. We serve as a lifelong learning center for all members of our community, providing outstanding educational programs for school children and popular programs for families and adults. The Research Library serves residents, scholars, students and researchers onsite and online. With its rich historical content, archived material and online photo gallery, our website is visited by more than 1,500 distinct visitors daily.
At 28,000 square feet, the San Diego Model Railroad Museum is the world's largest operating model railroad museum. This unique museum contains four enormous scale and model layouts, built by separate clubs, which depict railroads of the Southwest in O, HO, and N scales. In addition, the San Diego Model Railroad Museum features a Toy Train Gallery with an interactive Lionel layout for children and state-of-the-art theater lighting.
Dedicated to ‘art of the people’ (mingei) from all eras and cultures of the world, Mingei International Museum shares arts of daily life through dynamic, changing exhibitions of historical and contemporary folk art, craft and design. Mingei’s superb collections and stunning exhibitions showcase the finest examples of creative expression from unknown craftsmen to renowned contemporary designers. Mingei celebrates the “every-day-ness” of art—the belief that everyday objects and materials that often serve a useful purpose can also be objects of great beauty.
Affectionately called San Diego’s jewel box of fine art, the Timken Museum of Art 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.
This museum presents the story of the automobile in ways that engage the visitors and their experiences with cars.
Compelling exhibits invoke a visceral reaction for the visitors about cars they have owned, loved, and driven. There is something for everyone. In addition to cars, the museum features a large motorcycle exhibit, memorabilia, and videos that put the automotive experience into cultural perspective. The museum was founded by San Diego car collectors in 1988 and has now grown to a museum that features automotive culture from around the world.
Science, space and aviation history all unfold at the San Diego Air & Space Museum - California’s Official Air and Space Museum.
From monsters and beer history, to California Tower tours, to our relationships with animals and the truth about cannibalism – there’s something for everyone at the San Diego Museum of Man.
During your visit, you’ll explore a variety of unique, interactive exhibits that cover a vast range of human history and culture. Plus, you can make your visit even more memorable with a California Tower tour and a visit to the limited-time exhibit, Cannibals: Myth & Reality.
The Veterans Memorial Center, Inc. was formed in March 1989 to create, maintain and operate an institution to honor and perpetuate the memories of all men and women who have served in the United States Armed Forces and Wartime Merchant Marine.
The Veterans Museum at Balboa Park was chartered to serve five categories of function: