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Everything You Need to Know About Visiting Bowers Museum

Everything You Need to Know About Visiting Bowers Museum

Explore Bowers Museum in Orange County: a guide to exhibits, dining, and visitor essentials. Dive into global culture today. Team


2 min read

November 09, 2023

Nestled in the heart of Orange County, California, the Bowers Museum has established itself as a leading cultural institution, spotlighting the world's finest arts and history. From its inception in 1936 to the present, the museum has consistently enriched lives by presenting the world's cultures, old and new, through its diverse exhibitions, programs, and educational initiatives. Whether you're a history aficionado, an art enthusiast, or simply curious, the Bowers Museum has something to offer for everyone. If you’re planning a visit soon, here’s everything you need to know.

Overview of the Museum

Founded through the generosity of Charles and Ada Bowers, the museum’s mission is to celebrate and preserve the world’s diverse cultural legacy. Located in Santa Ana at 2002 North Main Street, the museum has expanded considerably over the years. Today, it offers a myriad of exhibitions ranging from Native American art, African art, to the arts of the Pacific and Asia, giving visitors a taste of the vast and varied history of world cultures.

What to See

The museum boasts an ever-changing roster of temporary exhibitions. These are in addition to its permanent exhibits, ensuring that even if you’ve visited before, there's always something new to discover. Key exhibits that are ongoing include

  • Ancient Arts of China: A journey through 5000 years of history.
  • Sacred Realms: Ritual and religion in the African and Oceanic arts.
  • First Californians: A deep dive into the indigenous cultures of California.

There are plenty of exciting exhibits that are constantly being added and rotated in. This adds to keeping the museum great for multiple visits. Check out the Bowers Museum website consistently to see what exhibits are live and upcoming.

Bowers Museum highlights a diverse array of exhibits throughout the year.

Dining at the Museum

A visit to the Bowers Museum isn’t complete without indulging in some culinary delights. The Tangata Restaurant, located within the museum premises, offers a delightful fusion of Pacific Rim and California cuisine. It's the perfect spot to recharge after a morning of exploring. The eatery offers both indoor and outdoor seating, ensuring that guests can enjoy their meal amidst the ambiance of their choosing.

Visitor's Information

  • Hours of Operation: The Bowers Museum is open Tuesday through Sunday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. It remains closed on Mondays, Fourth of July, Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year's Day.

  • Admission: General admission tickets are $18 priced for adults. Seniors, and students get a discounted price of $15. Children under 12 and Bowers Museum members get free entry. It's worth noting that the museum offers free admission to Santa Ana residents on Sundays with proof of residency.

  • Accessibility: The museum is wheelchair accessible, and wheelchairs are available on a first-come, first-serve basis. Assistive listening devices are also available for lectures and films.

  • Parking: Convenient parking is available directly adjacent to the museum. North of the museum there is parking available for $6. South of the museum parking is made available on 20th street in case of overflow. There is also street parking that is timed and metered. Museum members can purchase an annual parking pass for $20.

Special Programs and Events

The Bowers Museum is not just a place of passive observation. It offers a plethora of educational programs and events. There are frequent lectures, a book club, film series, workshops, art classes, and family festivals to engage visitors of all ages. For families with children, the Kidseum, an interactive children's museum and learning center, offers art and cultural programs aimed specifically for the younger audience.

The Bowers Museum offers a unique blend of art, culture, and history, making it a must-visit for anyone in the Orange County area. Whether you're local or just passing through, the museum provides a rich, enlightening experience that resonates long after your visit. With its constantly evolving exhibits and a plethora of programs, the Bowers Museum ensures that every visit is as unique and enriching as the cultures it represents.

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