Look closer! This gallery serves as an introduction to the overall museum experience and encourages exploration of our natural world. Inside this exhibit gallery are live animals: bees, turtles, alligators, snakes, and more!


Explore the Earth’s unique place in space and its “just right” relationship to the sun: not too close and not too far. Also, touch a real meteorite from outer space!


See how different conditions on Earth, including geography and weather disturbances, relate to different biomes. Experiment with a hands-on Kinetic sand table and create an erupting volcano, snow-capped mountains, or flowing rivers. Discover beauty in the earth’s rocks and minerals.


Explore various habitats that are made possible by fresh water, including a 600-gallon fresh water aquarium. Ever wonder what’s inside a beaver lodge? Crawl into ours and find out!


Explore an authentically recreated cave based on Alabama caves. Look for hidden animals and crawl through walls, and watch out for bats and bears! Visitors learn about the creatures that live in the different parts of a cave, and it’s all wheelchair accessible.


The Arctic/Desert compares the similarities and differences between the Arizona Sonoran Desert and the Alaskan Arctic. Did you know both are home to foxes and bees? How do they survive the extreme heat or cold? Find out in our Arctic/Desert exhibit gallery!


Marvel at the amazing life of a coral reef in our 15,000-gallon saltwater aquarium. Our 440-gallon aquarium is home to the type of jellyfish known as a Moon Jelly. Discover live coral as well as a digital sea shell generator.


Wander through the forest and look up, down, in, and under. Climb “Big Tree,” explore Curiosity Cabin, and visit our Birds exhibit on the second-floor mezzanine. Learn about the plants and animals of southeastern forests, including carnivorous plants that catch insects for food!


Take a close look at both live and pinned insects. Insect terrariums on display include an ant colony and insects that live in water. There is also an area for toddlers to play.