Discovered the #5 bus took a very favorable route from just across from our apartment, via 2 great looking cafes, to Golden Gate Park so that was our New Year’s Day out and about. The park is enormous and quite different to Central Park – I think because it’s really open – lots of sky.
We wanted to visit the California Academy of Sciences while we were there but almost turned away when the tickets were $35 each! However – it was actually worth it. The museum (not sure if that’s what you call it, perhaps science center is better) was small enough with enough different things that we got to see every corner of it (well, except for gift shops and cafes).
There are 2 large domes inside the center – one a planetarium where I think we both had our first planetarium visit where reclined in the big seamless dome you really do feel like you’re flying through space and the other an actual rain forest with an airlock so that no animals can get out.
The rain forest was amazing, steamy hot with birds, frogs and butterflies in the trees and ponds just doing their thing. It was awesome having colored butterflies flitting across your head and so close to touch and other than people taking photos and using a flash in front of signs where it said ‘no photography’ with an explanation about how light-sensitive the bird or animal was, people seemed to just leave the butterflies alone.
The aquarium under the rainforest was cool – not that large but some big fish and interesting jelly-types.
There were also reindeer outside!
The roof of the building where it humps over the planetarium and the rain forest is living – they’ve planted native species over the domes and around the vents. It looks really cool! The Living Roof.