Bowers Museum (Santa Ana) - 2021 What to Know Before You Go (with Photos) - Tripadvisor
Bowers Museum

Bowers Museum, Santa Ana: Hours, Address, Bowers Museum Reviews: 4.5/5

Bowers Museum
4.5
Art Museums • Children's Museums • History Museums
10:00 AM - 4:00 PM
Tuesday
10:00 AM - 4:00 PM
Wednesday
10:00 AM - 4:00 PM
Thursday
10:00 AM - 4:00 PM
Friday
10:00 AM - 4:00 PM
Saturday
10:00 AM - 4:00 PM
Sunday
10:00 AM - 4:00 PM
About
Take a trip around the globe at the Bowers Museum! Opened in 1936, the Bowers prides itself on showcasing world-class arts and cultures in a warm, inviting space located in the heart of Orange County. Bowers has been voted "Best Museum in Orange County" by OC Register for 26 years and has organized more than 50 special exhibitions in just the past 15 years in partnership with some of the greatest museums in the world. Recent highlights include blockbusters such as Terra Cotta Warriors, Mummies: Treasures from the British Museum, Guo Pei: Couture Beyond, and Inside the Walt Disney Archives. Over 100,000 square feet and surrounded by lush gardens, the Bowers campus includes a 296 seat auditorium, 12,000 square feet of event space, a Patina-owned Tangata Restaurant, a robust Gallery Store, 8 permanent exhibitions, and spectacular featured exhibits on rotation, to ensure a full day of engaging fun with every visit. Bowers Museum, bringing the world to you.
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Popular mentions

4.5
396 reviews
Excellent
256
Very good
118
Average
14
Poor
6
Terrible
2

Scott Failmezger
Oregon City, OR817 contributions
50 Years of Disney Archives
Oct 2020 • Couples
We were happy to get to see the exhibit showing the 50 years of Disney Archives gathered. From Walt's desk to Herbie the Love Bug it is all here. We enjoyed seeing the carpet bag and blocks from Mary Poppins. The letter Walt wrote about buying land in Anaheim. The costumes were very cool.
Written 25 October 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Leah S
Santa Ana, CA19 contributions
Nice Museum
Apr 2019 • Friends
We went here with friends and had a great time. This didn't look like an all day activity, but we could've easily stayed longer than we did.
I've not been to the restaurant there, but it looked good.
Also they do great community events and rotating exhibits. I'm looking forward to seeing the 50 years of Disney exhibit they have going now. In past I also remember knights, and the Terracotta Warriors.
Written 22 March 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

jodyj2017
Tustin, CA21 contributions
while there is art, the focus is more on understanding the cultures of the world and/or various eras in California
Feb 2020
loved the spirits gallery where the artifacts of Oceania are displayed. I enjoyed learning about the indigenous people of the area. I also loved the docent tour of the China gallery. They have had some really good visiting exhibits like the Qua Pao couture exhibit which was fascinating.They are also getting a Disney Archive exhibit which should be great.
Written 5 March 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

James Weaver
Irvine, CA2,171 contributions
Lunar New Year Celebration...
Jan 2020 • Couples
We went to the Bowers on Super Bowl Sunday afternoon to see the last day of the exhibit of Authur Beaumont. He was the American Navel Artist for many years and during WWII. This was titled “The Art of the Sea”. Many wonderful watercolors capturing the grandeur of the sea. He was given a commission as a lieutenant in 1933. After spending time and and making the friendship of many navel officers, he was invited to sail as a civilian, and capture what he wanted to paint. This lead to his commission. Many exciting battle scenes and of the Polar Regions where he painted out in the open during -70 weather. Leaving this exhibit we saw a few of. The dance numbers being presented for the Lunar New Year Celebration. A terrific afternoon was ours.
Written 5 February 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Sharon B
Alta Loma, CA65 contributions
A small museum with a plethora of exhibits
Jan 2020
We enjoyed a day at the museum. I especially enjoyed the exhibit called Spirits and Headhunters. It is an extensive look at the natives of New Guinea. The exhibits are well labeled and explain what and why. The gemstone carvings of Van Pelt were also both interesting and beautiful, including a crystal skull. Another interesting exhibit was the tree-sized drums, vertical carved gongs, and funeral poles of the South Pacific Islands. The tiny room housing artifacts from the First Californians (mostly woven bowls, and carved stone bowls) is not accessible by wheelchair. There is a broken lift. When you go to the Missions and Ranchos room, look up at the amazing coffered ceiling. An enjoyable day.
Written 27 January 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

02corvette
Marietta, GA1,210 contributions
Best Museum in the area
Nov 2019
I love, love , love the Bower and when I come to CA, this is my go to place, no matter the reason for coming, even when it was my dtrs wedding week.
The exhibits are always stunning and displayed so well. We knew there were carved gems as a special exhibit but the others were even more amazing.
If you can only do one museum, this is the one to do!!!
Written 7 January 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

GlobalGypsy_13
San Diego, CA2,683 contributions
What a Treasure!
Nov 2019
The Bowers is more than a local museum. In addition to discovering California artists, artifacts, and native peoples, you can learn about Pacific Island cultures (one of my favorite areas of the museum) and enjoy special exhibits, such as the current (Nov. 2019) Tamayo printmaking collaboration and Beaumont exhibit; both are outstanding. There's an adjacent paid parking lot and free street parking. The gift shop at the entrance is well worth checking out. Do enjoy exploring this world-class museum that houses many treasures.
Written 22 November 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

BrooklynDodgers13
Henderson, NV710 contributions
A unexpected pleasure
Oct 2019 • Friends
I had not been to the Bowers Museum in many years. What an unexpected surprise. It is situated in the heart of Santa Ana, CA with convenient free parking. There was a rather interesting exhibit of Mixografia, which I had never heard of. It’s quite a process. This is a temporary exhibition. A Disney one is coming soon.
Upstairs there’s a permanent Historical California exhibit. The ceiling is painted with the history of California. I found the painting and biography of Bernardo Yorba fascinating as I had lived in Yorba Linda for more than 30 years. We were one of the last people to leave. 😊😊
Written 10 November 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

scott r
Silver Spring, MD514 contributions
smaller local museum focused on ancient and or non-western cultures
Oct 2019
This is not a 'fine arts' museum in the traditional sense. Micronesia, Polynesia, some Chinese, a bit of quartz/stone fashioned objects d'art (someone's entire collection I'd guess, and not related to the above) along with a display of ranchero period paintings for local color. Eceletic. Special exhibits on Beaumont, navy painter with an impressionistic style noted in his earlier less typified work and Tamayo, who worked in a kind of lithography, and was interesting but hard to photograph - so much is diplayed under glass in close quarters / relections terrible. Still this is worth seeing.
Written 29 October 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Margeritta
London445 contributions
Small but very interesting museum
Oct 2019
It was nice to see some culture after doing all the beaches in orange county. The exhibition by mexican artist rufino tamayo was very interesting. Recommended if you are in the area
Written 10 October 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

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Frequently Asked Questions about Bowers Museum

Bowers Museum is open:
  • Tue - Sun 10:00 AM - 4:00 PM


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