Rules and Restrictions/FAQ

Rules and Restrictions

  • Parkwide, Limited Adult: Ages 12+
  • Parkwide, Limited Youth: Ages 3 – 11
  • Explorer Annual Pass
    • Family: Up to any 2 adults and up to any 4 children, ages 3 – 17
    • Adult: Ages 18+
    • Senior: Ages 65+
    • College Student: College/University student w/ valid ID
    • Youth: Ages 3 – 17 (Available online soon! Purchase over the phone today!)

General Disclaimer 

All sales are final; non-refundable and non-transferable. Passes are not for resale. All passes have no blackout dates. Passes must be used within one (1) year of purchase date and are not valid for select events, special exhibitions, and programs. Before visiting, please contact the participating venues or check their websites for more information on hours, closures, additional events, special exhibitions, and film costs.

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I use my Parkwide or Limited Pass?

The Parkwide Pass provides one general admission to each participating Balboa Park venues and is valid for 7 consecutive days, beginning with first use. It is not valid for re-entry* across multiple days. Guests will receive their tickets via email which will be scanned at each venue’s front desk.


The Limited Pass provides you with one general admission to up to 4 of the participating venues, valid on the day of first use only. Guests will receive their tickets via email, which will be scanned at each venue’s front desk.

*Check with the museum for same-day re-entry privileges.

Are there any additional costs when visiting the venues in Balboa Park?

Occasionally, a venue will feature a special exhibition that requires an additional admission fee. Often times, special exhibitions are discounted for Balboa Park Explorer Annual Passholders. Always contact the venue to verify their policy before visiting. Here are some special exhibitions and experiences requiring an additional admission fee:

*Additional $10 fee per person. Note: Tower Tour may be limited as a result of COVID-19 health and safety guidelines.

**The additional discounted cost of $9.95 is only applicable to Balboa Park Explorer Annual Passholders. Note: There may be capacity limitations for the IMAX theater as a result of COVID-19 health and safety guidelines.

Are there blackout dates for the Balboa Park Explorer?

There are no blackout dates for the Balboa Park Explorer. The Pass will be accepted during all regular museum operating hours. Please note that some museums are closed on Mondays, The San Diego Museum of Art is closed on Wednesdays, and each venue has individual hours of operation. Be sure to visit each venue’s website for hours or closures.

What is the Balboa Park Explorer Annual Pass?

The Balboa Park Explorer Annual Pass provides general admission to 16 venues in Balboa Park, for 365 days, with no blackout days. As an Annual Passholder, you gain access to newsletters that include recommendations and announcements about happenings in the Park and exclusive invitations to monthly special events, providing a truly unique behind-the-scenes look into Balboa Park.

Are there different kinds of Balboa Park Explorer Annual Passes?

Yes. The Balboa Park Explorer program offers a multitude of Pass options to fit your needs!

Who qualifies for a College Student Annual Pass?

The College Student Annual Pass is for college/university students with a valid student ID. The Passholder must present their student ID and Explorer Annual Pass when entering a venue. It is also required to have a school name on file.

When may I begin using my Balboa Park Explorer Annual Pass?

Immediately! The Balboa Park Explorer Annual Pass is valid for 365 days from the date of purchase. A Temporary Pass will be sent via email for online orders, and issued in person for onsite orders. Physical Passes will arrive in the mail within 3-7 business days.

Is the Annual Pass a membership?

No. The Balboa Park Explorer Annual Pass is a discounted general admission ticket, valid for 365 days from date of purchase.

Are guest passes included in the Annual Pass?

No. Each individual Annual Passholder must be named.

Can I transfer an Annual Pass to another person?

All Balboa Park Explorer Annual Passes are non-transferable. If you renew your Balboa Park Annual Pass, you will have the option to swap or replace names as needed.

What happens if I come to Balboa Park and I’ve forgotten my Balboa Park Explorer pass?

For the best visitor experience, we encourage you to ALWAYS keep your Balboa Park Explorer Pass with you!  However, if you have forgotten your Pass, please stop by the Balboa Park Visitors Center, Fleet Science Center, San Diego Air & Space Museum, or San Diego Natural History Museum to pick up a Temporary Pass for the day.

What happens if I lose my Balboa Park Explorer Annual Pass and need to replace it?

If you lose your Balboa Park Explorer Annual Pass, there is a $5 reprint fee per Pass. To replace your lost Balboa Park Explorer Annual Pass, you may email the Balboa Park Explorer office at or call us at (619) 232-7502 and press 2 to speak with a representative.

Are payment plans available?
No, we do not offer payment plans at this time.
Can I upgrade my Parkwide or Limited Pass to an Annual Explorer Pass?

No. All sales are final. The Parkwide Pass is valid for seven consecutive days, beginning with the day of first use. The Limited Pass is valid for one day only on the day of first use. Unused Passes are valid for one year from the order date.

Are there discounts on Explorer Passes?

The discount is already built into the price of all Explorer Pass options!

Can I get a refund on my Explorer Pass?

No. There are no refunds on any of our Passes and they are not for resale.

Is the San Diego Zoo included with the Balboa Park Explorer?

No, the San Diego Zoo is not included with any Explorer Pass options.


NOTE: The Parkwide Pass w/ Zoo (formerly Explorer Combo Pass) has been temporarily paused.

Valid vouchers will still be honored. Please contact us via email at or by using Live Chat on our website for redemption options.

Can I participate in San Diego Museum Month?

No. San Diego Museum Month is a program of the San Diego Museum Council and Balboa Park Explorer does not participate. Head to their website for more info.

Can I participate in The Big Exchange?
No. The Explorer Annual Pass is not a membership and does not qualify for The Big Exchange. Head to San Diego Museum Council’s website for more info.
Can I participate in Kids Free in October?

No. The Explorer Parkwide and Limited Pass are discounted tickets and do not count as full-priced admission to the venues as required by Kids Free October rules and regulations. Head to San Diego Museum Council’s website for more info.