Tour: The Natural History Trail

Students get a general introduction to the Museum and discover the highlights of the 10,000 specimens on display during this tour. There is a focus on the 160 year history of the collection, the secrets behind taxidermy and the unique stories of the zoological and geological animals and fossils that are on display in the Irish Room and Mammals of the World exhibition.

School group on a guided tour looking at the Giant Irish Deer in the Museum

Tour at a glance

Level Junior Infants to 6th Class
Group size Designed for groups of 30 maximum
Location National Museum of Ireland, Natural History, Merrion Street
Duration 45 minutes
Dates 2019 8th, 15th, 16th &29th May; 5th, 6th, 12th, 13th, 19th, 20th, 26th & 27th June
Times 10am & 11:30am

This tour is not wheelchair accessible. With advanced notification the tour can be adapted to take place on the ground floor only, for groups with mobility issues.



Curriculum Links

SESE Science

Investigating and experimenting
Collect information and data from a variety of sources

Living things
Human life; Plant and animal life

Environmental awareness and care
Environmental awareness; Science and the environment; Caring for the environment



Learning Outcomes

  • Gain a greater knowledge of the history of the Museum's collection of animals and fossils
  • Increased knowledge of Ireland's wildlife and habitats
  • Understanding of mammals and where they live in the world

Learn about:

  • The fossil antlers of the giant Irish deer and how it became extinct in Ireland 
  • Irish predators and why they are endangered
  • The skull of a pilot whale and discover how it feels and smells
  • The largest mammals in the world - stand underneath a 20m fin whale
  • The tale of Irish Arctic Explorer, Sir Francis Leopold McClintock and his encounter with a polar bear


Resources & Suggestions

Before Your Visit

Make the most of your visit to the Museum. Why not take a 3D virtual tour of the Natural History Museum in the classroom with your students.

Prepare the class for the visit - give them an idea of what to expect to see or have a discussion about the Museum in advance of the visit. Other topics you might like to cover might include biodiversity, endangerment & extinction, predator-prey interactions, camouflage and animal prints, conservation, different rock types or how fossils are formed.