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  • Access Information

Access Information

The Museum of Zoology is free of charge to all visitors. Currently, only the lower gallery (Mammal displays and Exploration Stations) is open to the public and the length of an average visit is around one hour. Work is continuing on the redisplay of the upper gallery, which will reopen on 23 June. Your donation helps keep the Museum free and supports our public engagement work. 

Access into and around the Museum

The main Museum entrance is fully accessible from street level. Please enter the New Museums Site via the Pembroke Arch (located on Downing Street, almost opposite the end of Tennis Court Road). The Museum entrance is located through the Whale Hall, the large glass building to your right.

Access to the entrance level is via a ramp or 11 paved steps. The steps and ramp have handrails on both sides. Once on this level visitors should turn right, past two stone benches, and enter through automatic glass doors.

The Whale Hall is a large space with high ceilings. This space is shared with the café on the next level and so can become loud if busy. An ‘Ocean Song’ audio installation plays every 30 minutes, and runs for 15 minutes.

Visitors enter beneath our 21m Fin whale skeleton, which hangs from the ceiling. A suspended walkway gives visitors a close-up view of the whale, and is accessed by a spiral staircase of 11 and 10 steps, separated by a small landing tread (with open backed steps and handrails on both sides) or by the lift, arriving at the walkway through the café.

The reception desk, museum gallery entrance, shop and toilets are located at one end of the Whale Hall.

Visitors can access the upper gallery via the automatic glass doors at the end of the Whale Hall. There is a small slope just before the doors, with a handrail on the right. Please be aware that there are 2 steps at the end of the reception desk going down, parallel to the slope. 

The lower gallery is accessed either via a mezzanine level; 10 steps down from the upper gallery, passing approximately 15 metres of display cases on the mezzanine, then a further 11 steps down to the lower gallery; or via the lift which is located inside the upper gallery, to the right of the entrance doors. Once in the lower gallery all areas are step-free.

An Access Point providing further information for visitors who are unable to reach the mezzanine is located at the far end of the upper gallery.

Lift

The lift to all floors is located to the right once you enter the upper gallery and provides access down to the lower galleries and up to the café. There is no lift access to the mezzanine level between the upper and lower galleries. Information on the mezzanine displays can be found at a viewing point in the upper gallery.

We are experiencing some technical difficulties with our lift to the Lower Gallery.  Should you require lift access, please ring reception (01223 336650) prior to your visit.  

Parking at the Museum

There is no general visitor parking at the Museum. However, the Museum does have one accessible parking bay, located on the New Museums Site. To access this parking bay, please enter the site through the Pembroke Arch and speak to security via the intercom. We regret that this space is not bookable in advance. Limited blue badge parking is located in the Grand Arcade car park and on Trumpington Street, a 5 minute walk away.

Wheelchairs

The Museum has a wheelchair available for visitors to use. Please ask at reception or call 01223 336650 during opening hours to reserve a wheelchair for your visit.

 

Other accessibility information

Seating

Benches are provided in locations in the upper and lower galleries.

Assistance dogs

Guide dogs, hearing dogs and dogs for the disabled are welcome at the Museum.

Toilets and baby-changing facilities

Located past the reception desk on the right, including accessible toilets and baby-changing facilities.

Cloakroom facilities

The Museum has a pushchair storage area in the Whale Hall, to the right of the gallery entrance.

To ensure the safety of our exhibits, visitors are not permitted to bring any large items, such as suitcases, scooters, fold-up bicycles and musical instruments into the galleries. Lockers are available, but items are left at your own risk.

Audio description and touch tours

The Museum of Zoology education team lead audio descriptive and touch tours as part of the University of Cambridge Museums ‘Making Sense’ tours programme. This service is also available to blind and partially sighted groups, if requested when booking.

Induction Loops

Induction Loops are available in our Demonstration Room and Discovery Space. We have a portable loop available for tours. Please call in advance to enquire.

Other: Our venue is breast feeding friendly.