Museum Tours

Tour of the Day

Join us for a Tour of the Day! These themed tours focus on specific Yale Peabody Museum exhibitions and are offered occasionally on weekends. Tours are led by enthusiastic Yale graduate students and other knowledgeable volunteers. You’ll learn fascinating information about familiar Peabody specimens.


Free with regular admission. Meet in the Peabody lobby.


Upcoming Schedule:  Spring 2020

Saturday, 3/72:30 pmJewels of the Earth
Saturday, 4/42:30 pmJewels of the Earth
More tours coming soon!  


Tour Themes


Evolution and Extinction

Evolution, adaptation and extinction are not just for textbooks and classrooms! Here at the Yale Peabody Museum, we have a multitude of fascinating fossils that reveal these concepts—no scientific background required! Open to all ages. Your tour guide Dan Thoreson is a third-year molecular biology doctoral student studying how the cells in our bodies respond to viral infections. When he’s not in the lab studying viruses, he is sharing his excitement for science with our visitors.


The Peabody Dioramas

Hannah Weinberg-Wolf is a fifth-year doctoral candidate in Yale’s Department of Psychology, where she spends her days figuring out how monkeys think about each other. With a master’s degree in museum studies and a love of natural history museums (especially the Peabody!), Hannah would love to show you around the Museum’s magnificent world-famous dioramas. In about 30 minutes you will learn why they are unique and a lot about what makes the animals and landscapes in them so special.


Hollywood Dinosaurs

Visit the real dinosaurs featured in some of Hollywood’s biggest movies! The Peabody is home to the original fossils of pop culture’s most famous prehistoric reptiles. Could a Tyrannosaurus rex really chase down a speeding truck? Can scientists extract dinosaur DNA from amber? Learn the science and debunk the myths in your favorite blockbusters. A life-long visitor to the Peabody, your tour guide Ryan Timpe has been a volunteer here since 2014. He leads weekend tours and helps at some of the Museum’s biggest events. Ask him about his favorite exhibit! Image: Deinonychus. Credit: Robert Lorenz


Jewels of the Earth

Here in David Friend Hall, Peabody’s state-of-the-art gem and mineral gallery, you will be amazed by the dazzling and breathtaking specimens from all around the world. This 30-minute exploration of natural wonders will not only show you the beauty, but also the physics and chemistry, of diamonds, opals, amethysts, and more. The tour is open to all ages! Your tour guide Qianhong Zhu is a fourth-year doctoral candidate in Yale’s Department of Chemical and Environmental Engineering, focusing on developing new materials for water treatment applications. Image: Quartz, variety amethyst with calcite. Gift of David Friend (YC '69). Credit: Robert Lorenz


Ancient Climate Change

People sometimes say, "the climate's changed before," but what does that mean? Take a billion-year journey through our exhibits to learn about some of Earth's most extreme climate changes, how they affected life, and what processes caused them. Why was it so warm when dinosaurs ruled the planet? Did you know there was a time when Earth froze solid? Your tour guide is Daniel Gaskell, a third-year doctoral candidate in paleontology who specializes in using microscopic fossils to figure out the earth's ancient climate.


Fossil Forensics

When we think about paleontology and fossils, often our first thought is of dinosaurs—but don’t overlook mammals! Your guide Brian Chang will take you on a tour of the Peabody’s Hall of Mammalian Evolution. Join him for a close examination of several ice age mammal skulls and look for clues that help us to understand how the animals behaved in life. Although Brian, a first-year undergraduate student at Yale, is undecided about his major, he knows he loves the Peabody and all its exhibits.