Although most visitors consider Point Reyes National Seashore to be primarily a park at which to enjoy the outdoors, there are three Visitor Centers in which one can find shelter and learn more about Point Reyes during inclement weather. In the Visitor Centers, one will find informative exhibits about the natural and cultural history of the Point Reyes area. Please see our Visitor Centers page to learn more about the Bear Valley, Kenneth C. Patrick and Lighthouse Visitor Centers. Or visitors with an appointment are welcome to check out the artwork that is on display in the Red Barn Classroom.
During inclement weather, visitors may also wish to visit the Jack Mason Museum in Inverness or the Bolinas Museum in Bolinas. There are also numerous art galleries in the vicinity.
Visitors may also request and view a number of audio-visual programs at the Bear Valley Visitor Center.
Bear Valley Visitor Center Auditorium
"Point Reyes: The Point of Kings" - Point Reyes Orientation (16 minute video)
"Enchanted Shore" - Inspiring Images of the Seashore (20 minute slide presentation)
"Something Special" - Point Reyes Orientation and Introduction (22 minute video)
"On a Barren Rock" - Point Reyes Lighthouse History (11 minute video)
"A Spark of Life" - 1995 Vision Fire (12 minute video)
Attend a presentation of the park's Science On a Sphere® (SOS) at the Bear Valley Visitor Center. SOS presentations may be offered as a "Ranger's Choice" program at 1:30 pm on weekends. Check the program schedule on our Schedule of Events: Weekend Ranger Programs page, or stop by or call the Bear Valley Visitor Center at 415-464-5100 x2 x5 to learn when the next SOS program will be offered. We also have a variety of SOS films which can be viewed at other times of the day.
Science On a Sphere® is a room sized, global display system that uses computers and video projectors to display planetary data onto a six foot diameter sphere, analogous to a giant animated globe. Researchers at NOAA developed SOS® as an educational tool to help illustrate Earth System science to people of all ages. Animated images of atmospheric storms, climate change, and ocean temperature can be shown on the sphere, which is used to explain complex environmental processes in a way that is simultaneously intuitive and captivating.
In 2003, Point Reyes National Seashore Association (PRNSA) established the art gallery in the Red Barn Classroom at Point Reyes National Seashore. Rotating painting, photography, and educational exhibits were on display throughout the year. Themes of the selected shows reflected the natural or cultural aspects of the Seashore and surrounding area. PRNSA sponsored the Art Exhibitions and handled all art show sales, a portion of which supported the Point Reyes National Seashore Museum and Archives Research Services.
(415) 464-5100 This number will initially be answered by an automated attendant, from which one can opt to access a name directory, listen to recorded information about the park (i.e., directions to the park; visitor center hours of operation; weather forecast; fire danger information; shuttle bus system status; wildlife updates; ranger-led programs; seasonal events; etc.), or speak with a ranger. Please note that if you are calling between 4:30 pm and 10 am, park staff may not be available to answer your call.