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National Museum (Museo Nacional)

Calle 17, Avenidas Central y Segunda | Antiguo Cuartel Bella Vista, San Jose, Costa Rica
Experience for Yourself
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Discover Costa Rica's Capital City and Museums
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Private San Jose City Tour with Lunch
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San Jose Walking Tour including Central Market and Lunch
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This 19th-century building contains a well-organized exhibits on Costa Rica's history and culture.
  • Excellent42%
  • Very good40%
  • Average14%
  • Poor3%
  • Terrible1%
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Hours Today: 08:30 - 04:30
Calle 17, Avenidas Central y Segunda | Antiguo Cuartel Bella Vista, San Jose, Costa Rica
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Reviews (944)
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151 - 160 of 539 reviews

Reviewed 22 April 2016 via mobile

The design of this museum instantly caught my eye! The museum houses a number of interesting sections including a collection of butterflies, prehistoric animal display and a description of the history of San Jose.

Thank Susanne L
Reviewed 21 April 2016

While on a self-guided walking tour along Central Avenue (Avenida Central) pedestrian mall, I came across an interesting park with a yellow building at the other end. Approaching, I saw a sign designating this National Museum. What a delight to find a butterfly garden and...More

Thank DeanMurphy2020
Reviewed 20 April 2016 via mobile

We learned alot about Costa Rican indigenous history. Really liked the carved stools and art. Nicely exhibited and english signs. Kids loved it.

Thank June C
Reviewed 17 April 2016

This great centrally located museum gave us a great overview of the history of Costa Rica. It has a lovely butterfly garden and various different rooms with interesting history and explanations. Worth a visit!

Thank kathys377495
Reviewed 10 April 2016

We only had a couple of hours in San Jose, but it was well spent in this lovely museum. It starts with a butterfly garden, then you go around the old fort seeing a variety of permanent & temporary exhibitions. It's not large, but 5...More

Thank Farnham-Family-of-4
Reviewed 7 April 2016

We had a day to explore San Jose and included the National museum for a brief visit. They have a wonderful section with live butterflies, in an open air two story atrium filled with flowers butterflies love and feeders. You can get close to the...More

Thank JohnKappa
Reviewed 6 April 2016

The butterfly enclosure entrance was an unusual but pleasant feature. The museum is not too large and has very well presented exhibits giving an informative history of Costa Rica. Quite quiet whilst we were there. Pleasant garden with plenty of shade to sit in. Worth...More

Thank Val C
Reviewed 4 April 2016 via mobile

A delight to enter this museum because you walk through a butterfly garden The museum has some good exhibits from pre historic times to the life of pre and post Colombian life. There are also temporary exhibits. The tower in the gardens outside still has...More

Thank ukcamel
Reviewed 3 April 2016

Access to this well laid out museum is via a butterfly 'farm' which really warms you up in readiness for a most interesting cultural tour. Hot outside, hot inside but the exhibits were truly amazing. I learned a lot but my favourite section had to...More

Thank John C
Reviewed 1 April 2016 via mobile

Took some time to walk through this old fortress which is. Ow a museum. My favorite part was walking through the butterfly sanctuary. On the top, there were some good views of the city and the cells were of interest. Had fun posing with the...More

Thank Joseph G
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Questions & AnswersAsk a question
Brooke E
The website says $9, but many of the reviews say "free." Is anyone able to clear this up?
9 January 2017|
Response from bdstephen | Reviewed this property |
It has been free while they are remodelling. At normal times are free 1 day/week
What are the opening hours?
7 January 2017|
Answer Show all 3 answers
Response from rainiershadow | Reviewed this property |
8:30a.m. to 4:30 p.m. great place to visit
I don't speak or read Spanish. will I be able to get much out the museum or do you need to know some Spanish to understand the context of the exhibits?
8 October 2016|
Answer Show all 4 answers
Response from markremarks | Reviewed this property |
As others have said, many of the exhibits have English information as well as Spanish. I don't speak Spanish either but I enjoyed my visit.