Iziko South African Museum

A look into nature and history for big and small

The South African Museum, located at 25 Queen Victoria Street is home to more than one and a half million specimens of scientific importance.
The collections now range from fossils almost 700 million years old to insects and fish caught last week. There are also stone tools made by people 120 000 years ago, traditional clothes from the last century, and T-shirts printed yesterday and create a better understanding of the earth and its biological and cultural diversity, past and present.

African Dinosaurs is a permanent exhibition about the lives of these long- extinct reptiles. Where they came from, what they ate, how they reproduced, how they adapted to the ever-changing environments and what caused their rapid decline (and global) into worldwide extinction around 65 Mya. IT also investigates the origins of the one direct descendant of dinosaurs (that survived the extinction, and are still around today- the) - birds!

It features two huge skeletons from North Africa, the herbivorous Jobaria and a fish-eating Suchomimus, as well as skulls of mega-carnivores Carcharodontosaurus and Sarchosuchus. Realistic dioramas of ancient Karoo landscapes with fleshed-up reconstructions of some of our South African dinosaurs help bring the fossils back to life. These include a ‘hatchlings scene’ based on a very rare specimen of dinosaur eggs containing tiny Massospondylus embryos.

The Planetarium is a celestial theatre in the round, utilizing the complex Minolta star machine and multiple projectors to transport audiences through the wonders of the universe. Inside the domed auditorium, we can recreate the night sky, so whatever the weather outside, the Planetarium sky is always clear, an extraordinary audio-visual experience for old and young.
Planetarium host shows for children, learners and adults throughout the year and extra shows during school holidays.

Discovery Room
Here children can touch and explore objects that elsewhere in the Museum are protected by glass cases. A child can see the world through the lens of a microscope, discover treasures in a sandpit, have a bird’s eye view of a colony of ants, feel a whale’s tooth, and so much more!  All activities are aimed at foundation phase learners, and are offered in English or Afrikaans. Activities relating to the displays in the Museum are enhanced by interaction with specimens in the Discovery Room.  To plan or discuss possible ideas or activities contact Anton van Wyk at tel. 021 481 3924.
Opening hours: Monday - Friday: 10h00 - 15h00 (closed on weekends and public holidays).
Mind Space
Mind Space is an online learning centre sponsored by BP. It caters for learners from 8 years upwards, accompanied by their teachers or adult guardians. The centre houses a collection of books, CD’s and videos on topics ranging from anthropology to zoology. This is a fun, interactive space which can be used to access material for projects and lessons and small groups (up to 20) can book this venue for computer literacy lessons.
Opening hours: Monday - Friday: 10h00 - 15h00 (closed over weekends and public holidays)

Similarly, the 12 national museums that make up Iziko Museums of Cape Town are spaces for cultural interaction, where knowledge is shared, stories told and experiences enjoyed. South African Museum • South African National Gallery • Maritime Centre • Slave Lodge Museum • William Fehr Collection • Michaelis Collection • Rust en Vreugd Museum • Bertram House Museum • Koopmans-de Wet House Museum • Groot Constantia Museum • Planetarium • Bo-Kaap Museum

Rainy Day Activities
Museums & Galleries
Cape Town City Bowl
(0) Reviews
Pram Friendly
Toilet Facilities
Wheelchair Accessable
Age Groups
0-3, 4-7, 8-12

Contact Details

+27 (0)21 4813840
Opening Hours
Mon-Sun 10am - 5pm
Closing Dates
Closed Christmas Day and Good Friday
Iziko South African Museum photo

25 Queen Victoria Street, Gardens, Cape Town

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