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Things to See & Do

Find unique objects and fascinating specimens throughout National Museum of Ireland - Natural History.


Also known as 'The Dead Zoo', the Museum's 10,000 exhibits provide a glimpse of the natural world that has delighted generations of visitors since the doors opened in 1857.

The building is a ‘cabinet-style’ museum designed to showcase a wide-ranging and comprehensive zoological collection and has changed little in over a century.

The Irish Room on the ground floor is dedicated to animals native to Ireland, featuring a variety of mammals, birds, fish, and insects.

The giant Irish deer skeletons found at the entrance of the Museum are some of the most famous and distinctive animals on display here. One of the skeletons has an antler span of 3.5 metres.

On the upper floor you will find an elephant, polar bear, lions, an array of monkeys, apes and lemurs which make up the Mammals of the World collection.

Other popular favourites include Spoticus the giraffe, and a 20 metre long whale skeleton suspended from the roof.

Life On Land Activity Cart at Natural History - National Museum of Ireland

The Discovery Zone within the Museum gives adults and children a unique chance to get to grips with a Badger and a Pilot Whale skull.

This hands-on area has two mobile units with the themes: Life on Land and The Life Aquatic.

A Reading Room provides an opportunity for visitors to sit and read more about the many animals which are on display and other topics related to Natural History.

Research visitors are always welcome to the collections in storage. Scientists, artists and historians are among the visitors actively encouraged to contact staff for access. See our section on Research Services for more information.

360° Exhibition Images - Natural History

360° Exhibition Images - Natural History

To give you an insider's view of the National Museum Ireland - Natural History.

Visitor Vox Pops

Visitor Vox Pops

Watch what visitors are saying about their visit to the National Museum of Ireland - Natural History...

Admire the Statue of Thomas Heazle Parke

Admire the Statue of Thomas Heazle Parke

Before entering, find out about the man whose statue stands guard outside National Museum of Ireland - Natural History.

Discovery Zone

Discovery Zone

This hands-on area has two mobile units, Life on Land and The Life Aquatic.

Draw in the Museum

Draw in the Museum

Are you an artists or an art student? Visit and be inspired by our animal exhibits for your drawing and sketching.

Reading Area

Reading Area

This quiet corner of the Museum is stocked with reference books, where children can find out more about the animals that they have just seen.

Meet Spotticus the Giraffe

Meet Spotticus the Giraffe

Meet the Museum mascot, Spotticus, a giraffe at the Dead Zoo with his own Twitter account.