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Visiting Us: Seeing is Believing


The Marine Mammal Center is open to the public daily from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., except Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year's Day. Admission is free and no reservation is required unless you have a group of 10 or more people!

PLEASE NOTE: The Marine Mammal Center will be closed to the public on Sunday, September 18, 2016, as we host a private event. We will also be closed on Saturday, October 8, as we show our considerable appreciation for our 1,200+ volunteers.

Video by: Expression College

Tour Options:
The Marine Mammal Center is nestled in the Marin Headlands in the beautiful Golden Gate National Recreation Area, just minutes north of the Golden Gate Bridge. We offer educational programs and tours; plus, you are welcome to explore on your own – view exhibits and our animal patients. Admission is FREE but tours are highly recommended (the small fee helps save our seals and sea lions!)

Individual and families: Groups (10+ people) & Field Trips:

For Questions, please call (415)-289-7330

Missiles to Medicine Tour
Over our 41 year history, we have turned a former Nike Missile site into the world’s largest marine mammal hospital. Join us for a 30-minute walking tour to see our facility and filtration systems that make it possible for us to care for over 200 patients at a time. Take a peek behind the scenes at the hospital as you learn more about the patient pens and pools and our intensive care unit and surgery suite where we care for our most fragile patients.

The Missiles to Medicine Tour will be offered every Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, and Saturday at 12 pm and 2 pm, from June 8 (World Oceans Day) through September 3, 2016. Tours are available by reservations, which can be booked online.

Pricing details:

  • This tour is designed for participants ages seven and older and there is a limit of 10 persons per tour. Children under the age of 7 are not able to participate. For groups with children under the age of seven, the Docent-Led Tour is available.
  • Tickets cost $9 for adults and $5 for members/seniors/children ages 7-17.
  • New members may join the Missiles to Medicine Experience OR the Docent Led Tour for FREE. Member pricing applies if they decide to attend BOTH.


Key Information:

  • Admission is FREE!
  • We are open 10am – 5pm daily except Thanksgiving, Christmas and New Year’s Day.
  • Directions, Public Transport Info and map to The Marine Mammal Center.
  • Sorry - No Dogs Allowed! For the health and safety of both Center patients and domestic animals, all pets (except fully immunized service dogs) are prohibited in the Center’s buildings and public areas.
  • The Marine Mammal center is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization that relies on donations from caring people like you!

What animals will you see?

  • February to May: Pupping season! You’ll see northern elephant seals and California sea lions. Harbor seal pups are not on view because they are very fragile and sensitive to human disturbances.
  • June to October: Sea Lion season with some of the last northern elephant seals and harbor seal pups from the spring getting ready to return to the wild.
  • November to January: True, it's our quieter season on the animal front (although we can get the odd fur seal). But the weather is glorious, so join us for a tour and get some early holiday shopping in at our great eco-minded gift store (all proceeds benefit the patients).
  • Check out our Patients page to see which animals are at our hospital right now!

Got questions? Need some planning advice? We are here to help. Just call (415)289-7330.


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