- Engaging and educational toys, tons of fun, museum mementos, dinosaurs galore!
Gems and Mineral Store
- Extraordinary fossils, gemstones, mineral specimens, and science kits
- Unique cultural treasures from around the globe - jewelry, gifts, books, media, and graphics
- A world full of plush animals
Natural History Express Kiosk
- In a rush? Stop by this location for great gifts to go.
Very Limited Food Service
The Museum’s cafeteria—the Atrium Café—is currently closed for renovation.
A light menu is available at Café Natural on the ground floor. Seating is extremely limited.
Outside food is prohibited in the Museum. There will be no seating area for school or tour groups.
- Ice cream, specialty coffees, and homemade desserts
There are men's and women's restrooms available in the lobby of the Constitution Ave entrance.
The first floor has restrooms available in two different locations:
- Ocean Hall – off the museum’s central hall (to the right) there are restrooms for men, women, and families (a companion restroom) available on this side of the museum.
- African Voices - there are men's and women's restrooms at the end of the exhibit behind the Freedom Theater. (Insiders tip: there are rarely lines here!)
- Human Origins Hall - there are men's and women's restrooms available near the middle of the exhibit.
Located at the very end of the temporary exhibit Beyond Bollywood, near the exhibit case Backyard Dinosaurs and the FossiLab, there is access to men's and women's restrooms.
Security & Policies
The security office is located on the ground floor near the Constitution Avenue entrance.
Lost & Found
Lost and Found at the Natural History Building is located in the security office only on the day you lost the item. The item is then kept in a central location with all the Smithsonian lost property.
We have security measures in place to ensure your safety and the protection of the objects in the Museum. You’ll be greeted upon entry by one of our security personnel who will conduct a thorough but speedy hand-check of all bags, briefcases, purses, strollers, and containers. All visitors are required to walk through a metal detector. Those who are unable to go through the metal detector will be hand-screened with an electronic wand by security personnel.
Help speed your entry into the Museum by having your bags open and ready for inspection, and empty your pockets before going through the screening station. Prohibited items include sharp items such as knives (including pocket or "Swiss Army"-style knives), screwdrivers, scissors, etc. Other items not permitted include firearms, pepper spray, and Mace.
Please note there may be a line to enter the Museum on busy days.
The Smithsonian permits still and video photography for noncommercial use only in its museums and exhibitions, unless otherwise posted.
For the safety of our visitors and collections, the Smithsonian prohibits the use of tripods or monopods in our museums and gardens. Monopod selfie sticks are included in this policy. This is a preventive measure to protect visitors and objects, especially during crowded conditions. We encourage museum visitors to take selfies and share their experiences—and leave the selfie sticks in their bags.
Smoking is prohibited inside the building and within 25 feet of the doorways.
Strollers are permitted in the museum.
Wheelchairs are available on a first-come, first-served basis from the security office.
Companion animals are not permitted in the museum, except for service animals.