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The Franklin Institute

One of the oldest and most beloved science museums in the country

Franklin Institute

The Franklin Institute is located on 20th Street over looking Logan Square. Credit: J. Fusco for Visit Philadelphia


Body Worlds: Animals Inside Out

Dates: October 4, 2015-April 12, 2015
Get a literal look inside the animal kingdom as Body Worlds returns to the Franklin Institute. Housed in the new Nicholas and Athena Karabots Pavilion, Body Worlds: Animal Inside Out features a rare and unprecedented view of the anatomy of nature with more than 100 specimens including sharks, goats, ostriches, a giraffe and even a giant squid.

For more info on Body Worlds, click the button below.

Body Worlds: Animals Inside Out

New Permanent Exhibition: Your Brain at the Franklin Institute

Discover what’s going on inside your head at the Franklin Institute’s newest permanent exhibition, Your Brain. The centerpiece of the new Nicholas and Athena Karabots Pavilion expansion, the 8,500-square-foot exhibition is an interactive, high-tech glimpse into the power of the brain.

Fire a neuron and wander amongst the discreet pathways that allow your brain to control the rest of your body. Learn how your brain interprets and analyzes information from the outside world and see how things are not always as they seem on a city street filled with illusions.

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Nicholas and Athena Karabots Pavilion

Opened in summer 2014, the Nicholas and Athena Karabots Pavilion is a massive 53,000-square-foot space for permanent and traveling exhibitions.

The dazzling, three-story expansion of the Franklin Institute also holds the spectacular new permanent exhibition, Your Brain – more info above.

On the exterior of the Pavilion you’ll find a Shimmer Wall created by internationally renowned artist Ned Kahn. Composed of 12,500 clear anodized aluminum squares, the Shimmer Wall changes with the wind.

The Experience

An innovator in designing hands-on exhibits before “interactive” became a buzzword, The Franklin Institute is as clever as its namesake. Its eminently touchable attractions explore science in disciplines ranging from sports to space.

Highlights include The Sports Challenge, which uses virtual-reality technology to illustrate the physics of sports; The Train Factory’s climb-aboard steam engine; Space Command’s simulated earth-orbit research station; a fully equipped weather station; and exhibits on electricity.

Films assume grand proportions on the Tuttleman IMAX Theater’s 79-foot domed screen; galaxies are formed and deep space explored in North America’s second-oldest planetarium, which reopened in 2002, sporting the continent’s most advanced technology. Don’t miss the 3D Theater and the indoor SkyBike.

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The History

In 1824, The Franklin Institute opened in Independence Hall to honor Benjamin Franklin and his inventiveness. In 1934, with the construction of the current building and the adjacent Fels Planetarium, it became a hands-on science museum. The IMAX Theater and the Mandell Center were added in 1990. Today, it’s Pennsylvania’s most visited museum. In the museum’s rotunda is the Benjamin Franklin National Memorial, with a 20-foot-tall marble statue of the scientist and Founding Father.

Great Kid’s Stuff

Course through the walk-through heart like a human corpuscle; at 15,000 times life size, it’s one of the museum’s first and most popular attractions.



222 N. 20th Street
Philadelphia, PA 19103
(215) 448-1200

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