What are the Austin Nature & Science Center's (ANSC) hours of operation?
- Monday - Saturday from 9:00 am - 5:00 pm
- Sunday from Noon - 5:00 pm
- The site closes for some City of Austin official holidays and certain area events, so please check the Austin Nature & Science Center webpage for closure notices.
How much does it cost to visit?
- Free admission for individuals and families visiting the exhibits and exploring the site.
- For organized groups wanting an On-Your-Own Tour, there is a $1.00 per person fee and these tours may be scheduled with Visitor Services at (512) 974-3888.
- Camps, most educational programs, adventure experiences, etc. are fee based, require registration, and are scheduled.
- Most special events on site are free admission. The marketing materials for each event will note if there is a fee.
Is there a map of the site?
- Yes, the ANSC Site Map features the exhibits, buildings, trails, and more.
Where is it located?
- The ANSC is located in the northwest corner of Zilker Park off of Stratford Drive. Please see map.
Where do I park?
- ANSC public parking is located under the Mopac overpass at 2389 Stratford Drive, Austin, Texas 78746. Please see map.
- Handicapped parking spaces are located near our main site entrance off of 2389 Stratford Drive and connect to the ADA compliant entry sidewalk.
- After parking, safely cross Stratford Dr. to the ANSC's entrance sidewalk on the West side of MoPac, which leads to the Visitor's Pavilion, public restrooms, and other site amenities.
What is the mailing address?
- Austin Nature & Science Center, 301 Nature Center Drive, Austin, Texas 78746
Is the ANSC on Facebook?
- Yes, we are. Please "LIKE" our Austin Nature & Science Center Facebook page and stay in touch with the ANSC. We share timely information there.
How do I contact staff?
- The ANSC's Visitor Services phone number is 512-974-3888.
- See the the Staff contact list to contact staff by email or phone.
What programs are offered?
- The ANSC offers a variety of programs for individuals, as well as groups, which include schools, homeschools, and more. Our programs start as young as age 3 and range up to adults. To learn more visit our Education, Events, and Camps and Programs webpages.
What volunteer or internship opportunities are offered at the ANSC?
- We offer opportunities for volunteers in many areas of the ANSC including programming, exhibits, landscaping and more. Please see ANSC Volunteer Opportunities for more information.
- GivePulse Volunteer Portal (ANSC's page) is the volunteer sign up website for available ANSC events and projects.
- For internship opportunities please call 512-974-3888 and ask for the Education Supervisor.
- Community service restitution volunteers are not accepted at this time.
How do I rent the meeting rooms?
- We do not rent out our classrooms or the site.
Does the ANSC host birthday parties for children?
- Yes, we do. More information is available on the Camps and Programs webpage, and you may also call Visitor Services at (512) 974-3888. Birthday parties are scheduled/reserved and limited to specific days/months of the year.
What are the hours of the Zilker Nature Preserve?
- Dawn to dusk. NOTE: One of the preserve's parking lot areas (under the Mopac overpass off of Nature Center Drive) and road gates (located directly off of Barton Springs Road), are closed and locked each day at 5:00 pm. Please see map.
May I bring my pet?
- No, the ANSC and the nature preserves have strict rules that specify no pets. This is to protect resident wildlife.
May I walk off of the trails and explore?
- No, the trails are designed to protect the wildlife and other sensitive ecological features. Leave no trace, protect and respect the ANSC site and the preserve land for the next visitor. Nothing may be removed from the parks or preserves.
What can I do when I visit the Austin Nature & Science Center and the surrounding area?
The ANSC offers a range of nature based programs, exhibits and activities. Drop in visitors can enjoy the Austin Nature & Science Center Forest Trail, Dino Pit Fossil Dig, Wildlife Exhibits, a variety of temporary and permanent exhibits, the Naturalists Workshop, and its Trade Counter (limited trading hours), bird watching, accessible trails around the pond system, and more.
The ANSC is located next to the Zilker Nature Preserve that offers on-your-own hiking and exploration, It can be accessed at a trail head near the Visitor's Pavilion and at the back of the Birds of Prey exhibit during ANSC's regular business hours. Austin's Nature Preserve system offers many opportunities to enjoy nature hikes and nature based programming.
Traveling nature and science related exhibits are hosted in the Visitor's Pavilion periodically with information, when available, on the Exhibits webpage.
Special events (like Austin Nature Day, Fall Festival and other family friendly events) are hosted on site at various times during the year with information, when available, posted on the Events webpage.
The Beverly S. Sheffield Education Center, home of the Splash! exhibit, is a satellite site of the Austin Nature & Science Center located in the Zilker Park Bathhouse at 2201 Barton Springs Road, Austin, TX 78746. Please see map. Staff may be contacted at 512-974-6350.
Adventure Experiences, Homeschool Skills Series, and Birthday Parties require registration and are fee based. For more information, please see ANSC's Camps and Programs webpage.
Summer Camps, Winter Camps, Spring Camps, and School Holiday Camps are available with registration/fees and are not available for drop in visitors. See the Camps and Programs webpage for details.
After completing your visit to the ANSC, there are other interesting sites nearby including Zilker Botanical Garden, Barton Springs Pool, Umlauf Sculpture Garden, and more. They are located within Zilker Metropolitan Park.
Check out Zilker Trek. Enjoy a fun, self-guided, hands-on, multimedia tour of eight specific locations in Zilker Park. It's a nature trek combining new technology and old. Consisting of ten interdisciplinary segments, Zilker Trek utilizes an iPod, a map, help sheets, and a journal.