Butterfly Pavilion — Free Admission on Select Days!

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Did you know Smithsonian’s National Museum of Natural History boasts an indoor Butterfly Pavilion, home to hundreds of live, fluttering butterflies? Even better? This unique feature is free on select days!

The Butterfly Pavilion is a brightly lit climate-controlled environment (80°), where you stroll among butterflies and blooming plants. Butterflies fly freely around the Pavilion, landing on plants and sometimes people! You’ll see butterflies from all over the world, including the US, Mexico, Central & South America, Africa, India, China, and Southeast Asia!

The Pavilion is open Tuesday through Thursday and requires the purchase of timed entry tickets (only available on-site at the Butterfly Pavilion Ticket Desk). However, on Tuesdays, admission is free!

Like other weekdays, a timed entry ticket is still required (only available on-site at the Butterfly Pavilion Ticket Desk). Please keep in mind that this opportunity is very popular, so it’s wise to visit the museum early and go straight to the ticket desk for your timed-entry pass (there’s always the chance this opportunity can “sell out”). See all the important details at the link below.

Great for kids, the 2nd-floor Butterfly Pavilion is adjacent to the Insect Zoo — the oldest continuously operating insect zoo in the United States! The zoo features many species of live insects, a nursery room where visitors can peek at insect larvae and pupae, and lots of opportunities to interact with volunteers and examine insects up close.


National Museum of Natural History • Wash, DC (Map)


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