The McWane Science Center is a state-of-the-art museum, aquarium, and 280-seat IMAX Dome Theater, housed in the historic Loveman’s department store in Downtown Birmingham, Alabama.
With over 9,000 square feet of interactive exhibits, including the Challenger Learning Center of Alabama, created in memory of the Space Shuttle Challenger Flight 51-L crew, your crew is sure to be entertained while learning so much!
The World of Water exhibit is home to more than 50 species of marine and freshwater aquatic life. You will also find a touch tank with small sharks and rays, environmental displays, and interactive microscope exhibits.
The Alabama Collections Center exhibits over 500,000 precious minerals, fossils, and Native American artifacts, the most noteworthy among them including the world’s fourth-largest collection of mosasaurs; the Appalachiosaurus (similar to Tyrannosaurus); and the state fossil of Alabama, the Basilosaurus cetoides (an 80-foot fossil whale).
The little ones will enjoy Itty Bitty Magic City, featuring a climbing structure, a water play area, a toddler zone, a grocery store, and, of course, an itty bitty sized city!
Hours and Admission
McWane Science Center is open seven days a week, 360 days a year, and now offers new extended hours. See below for information about admission prices to both the museum and the IMAX® Dome Theater.
Hours and admission are subject to change without notice and are subject to a 10% sales tax. Note: McWane Science Center is a weapons-free facility.
General Admission Prices
|Adventure Hall Only||$15||$12||$14|
*Under 2 years old: Free
Current McWane Science Center Hours
- Weekday Hours . . . . . . . . 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM
- Saturday Hours . . . . . . . . 10:00 AM to 6:00 PM
- Sunday Hours . . . . . . . . . 12:00 PM to 6:00 PM
Special Hours and Closings
- Closed New Year’ s Day
- Closed Christmas Eve & Christmas Day
- Closed Easter Sunday
- Closed Thanksgiving Day
McWane Science Center is located in the heart of downtown Birmingham. McWane Science Center is easily accessible from Interstate 65, *Interstate 59/20, Highway 31, and Highway 280.
*Your route may be affected due to ongoing construction on I 20/59
Please check 5920bridge.com for updated detours and directions.
- From Montgomery/ Hoover: Take I-65 North to exit 260-B. Follow 3rd Avenue North to 19th Street North. Turn right. McWane Science Center is located on the corner of 2nd Avenue North and 19th Street North.
- From Huntsville/ Gardendale: Take I-65 South to exit 260. Turn left at 4th traffic signal. Follow 3rd Avenue North to 19th Street North. Turn right, McWane Science Center is located at the corner of 2nd Avenue North and 19th Street North.
- *From Chattanooga/Gadsden: Take I-59/20 South/West to exit 125-B. Turn left. Follow 22nd Street North to 2nd Avenue North. Turn right, McWane Science Center is located at the corner of 2nd Avenue North and 19th Street North.
- *From Tuscaloosa/Bessemer: Take 1-59/20 North/East to exit 125-B. Follow 22nd Street North to 2nd Avenue North. Turn right, McWane Science Center is located at the corner of 2nd Avenue North and 19th Street North.
- From Auburn/Inverness: Take Hwy 31/280 to the 2nd Ave. North exit. Follow 2nd Ave. North. McWane Science Center is located at the corner of 2nd Avenue North and 19th Street North
Parking Deck: McWane Science Center’s parking deck offers safe and convenient parking on 2nd Avenue North. The height limit for the deck is 6’8”.
6:30am – 6:30pm: $5.00 required to exit deck. The exit gate accepts $1, $5, $10, $20 bills as well as debit and credit cards. You can also purchase a token at the ticketing counter inside the center. Members receive free parking in the deck. For after hours parking from 6:30 PM-10:00 PM, the cost to exit is $8.
Additional parking is available on the streets surrounding the center. On Monday – Friday there is a 2-hour limit on the street parking. The meter charges $0.25/hour. Street parking is free on Saturday, Sunday and on Holidays.