Frequently Asked Questions for visitors of the Penn Museum

Museum Policies

Help us keep our visitors and artifacts safe by following these guidelines:

  • Food and drink can damage artifacts—please bring only bottled water into the galleries.
  • Refrain from touching or leaning on objects, cases, and displays.
  • Children 14 and under must be accompanied by an adult at all times.
  • Running, loud voices, and disruptive behavior are not permitted.
    We encourage respectful conversation about our objects and exhibitions. Please be mindful when using cell phones.
  • Pencils are the only writing tools that can be used in the galleries.
    If you need a pencil, please ask at one of our front desks.
  • Please properly store large backpacks, suitcases, and umbrellas at the Museum entrances before entering the galleries.
    Private property is stored at your own risk.
  • Photography and videography is permitted for personal use, except in some special exhibitions.
    Professional photography, videography, selfie-sticks, monopods, and tripods are not permitted without advanced notice. Contact Public Relations at 215.898.4045 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. for information.
  • Possession of dangerous materials, including firearms, is not permitted.
  • There is no smoking, including electronic cigarettes, in the Museum, Warden Garden, or near Museum entrances.

We hope you enjoy your visit at the Penn Museum. If you need assistance, please ask a Visitor Services or Security representative onsite.


Museum FAQs

Is the Penn Museum, the Museum Archives, and the Museum Library open to the general public?
The Penn Museum is part of the University of Pennsylvania and is open to the general public. We invite all visitors to enjoy our galleries, exhibitions, and gardens during our public hours.

Access to the Penn Museum Archives for research is available by appointment. The public can view exhibitions of the Museum’s archival material in the Archives hallway and tour the Archives on most Friday afternoons through Unearthed in the Archives. Groups may also book Archives programs through Group Sales.

Access to the Penn Museum’s Research Library is available during Museum hours. Visit the Library's website for more information.

What are your public hours?
The Museum is open Tuesdays through Sundays, 10:00 am to 5:00 pm and select Wednesdays that offer evening programs. The Museum is closed on Mondays and major holidays. See Hours and Admission for details.

How do I get to the Museum? Where is the best place to park?
The Museum is located in University City neighborhood on the University of Pennsylvania Campus. See our information on directions and parking.

Do tickets need to be reserved in advance? Can I purchase tickets online?
Individual tickets can be purchased without reservations at our Museum admission desks when you arrive. You may purchase tickets online in advance if you wish. Reservations are requested for groups of 10 or more. View Group Visits for details and group discounts.

What types of photography or videography are allowed in the Museum?
Photography is permitted for private, noncommercial use except where otherwise posted. Flash photography is not permitted in the galleries. Videotaping with small, personal recording devices is allowed for non-commercial use. To protect visitors and objects, the Penn Museum prohibits the use of tripods, monopods, or selfie sticks in the Museum and gardens. We encourage visitors to share their photographs with others through social media.

Photographs cannot be published, sold, reproduced, transferred, distributed or otherwise commercially exploited in any way. See our filming request policies for commercial filming.

Are baby strollers allowed inside the Penn Museum?
Yes. Strollers are allowed throughout the Museum. We encourage families to visit!

Is the Penn Museum accessible? Do you have wheelchairs or other visitor accommodations?
Yes. Visit our Accessibility Page for details. See the Museum map to find accessible entrances and elevators. Wheelchairs are available at the Main Kamin Entrance and the Group Entrance (Kress). There are certain areas that are inaccessible without a staff escort. Please see any of the admissions or security staff for assistance.

Is there a café in the Museum?
Yes. The Pepper Mill Café, located on the Museum’s 2nd Floor, serves breakfast, lunch, and snacks. The café is open Tuesday through Friday 8:30 am to 4:30 pm, select Wednesdays until 7:30 pm, and weekends 10:00 am - 4:30 pm.

Does the Museum have a gift shop?
The Penn Museum Shop is located on the 2nd Floor at the Main Kamin Entrance, behind the admission desk. 

Are the galleries kept at a comfortable temperature?
Some of our galleries do not have air conditioning, so they are warm in the summer. The Museum is undergoing renovations to help improve the visitor experience.

What is the construction happening at the Museum?
The Museum will transform several of its signature galleries over the next five years. We will ensure a great visitor experience during the renovations. Please view the “Gallery Closures and Alerts” section of Plan Your Visit for details. The University of Pennsylvania health system has construction behind the Museum. Thank you for your patience as we make improvements.

How can I become a member of the Penn Museum?
Membership provides year-round Museum experiences. Learn more and join online here, or onsite at any of our admissions desks.

How can I volunteer or work for the Penn Museum?
Visit the Volunteer section of our site. See our Employment Opportunities page for a listing of current job offerings at the Museum.

Is the Museum interested in acquiring artifacts or objects?
See our Registrar's Office information on Donation Policy.

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