Explore... the Bakersfield Museum Trail
Explore a turn-of-the-20th century 16-acre village, the largest collection of Shark Tooth Hill Miocene Fossils in the world, score of endangered animals and plants, and a broad spectrum of visual arts experiences, all along the Bakersfield Museum Trail.
This 15 mile driving route connects four unique and family-friendly Bakersfield attractions. Bakersfield Museum of Art, Buena Vista Museum of Natural History and Science, California Living Museum, and Kern County Museum. Along the way, discover some historic sites and points of interest, plus statues of both the first European visitor to our area and a giant Native American.
Your Bakersfield Museum Trail brochure gets you special savings at each museum. The more you visit, the more you save. Pick up your free Bakersfield Museum Trail brochure, which includes a detailed driving map at any of the museums listed below, or at Visit Bakersfield (515 Truxtun Avenue). You also can download it below.
Bakersfield Museum of Art
1930 “R” Street, (661) 323-7219
One of Bakersfield’s finest cultural institutions, it is dedicated to engaging, inspiring, and building community through the arts. In its 60-year history, it has provided outstanding exhibits and offered unique educational opportunities in the visual arts to Bakersfield and its surrounding communities. Enjoy world renowned exhibitions or relax in the beautiful sculpture garden at Bakersfield’s only museum accredited by the American Alliance of Museums.
Buena Vista Museum of Natural History and Science
2018 Chester Avenue, (661) 324-6350
A unique museum offering fun and educational experiences for all ages, it is home to a world-class collection of one-of-a-kind Miocene fossils (14-16 million years old) found in the foothills of Bakersfield. Additional exhibits include a large collection of African, Asian and North American animal mounts; dinosaurs replicas and fossils; and Native American Lifeways, a life-size Interpretive family dwelling area with artifacts, paintings and baskets. Also explore a geology section with gems, minerals, petrified woods, fluorescent rocks, and the Oh! Zone and Explore-it Zone interactive hands-on areas are designed for children (but have something for all ages to enjoy).
California Living Museum (CALM)
10500 Alfred Harrell Highway, (661) 872-2256
This is California’s premier native zoo and garden. Consistently voted “Best Family Attraction” in the Bakersfield Californian’s Reader’s Poll, its spectacular Holiday Lights, with more than three million lights, was voted “Best Annual Event.” Many of the 250+ animals at CALM are non-releasable. Some cannot live in the wild due to physical disabilities and others have become dependent on humans due to being orphaned in the wild. Visit the $2 million, award-winning “Cats of California” exhibit which houses mountain lions and bobcats, and the desert bighorn sheep exhibit, a cooperative breeding program aimed at increasing this endangered species.
Kern County Museum
3801 Chester Avenue, (661) 437-3330
Take a walk through history at the Kern County Museum! Thousands of historical and cultural artifacts are displayed in more than 56 historic buildings on 16 beautifully landscaped acres. Your tour includes treasures such as a one room school, a general store, a jail, an oil derrick, seven historic homes, a world-class Oil Museum and a Children's Museum! From California’s Gold Rush, through its settlement and development, to the crucial oil industry of today, the state’s rich heritage can be experienced in one convenient and central location at the Kern County Museum.