Orange Zone trail

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Time: one to two hours
Audience: everyone

Are you big on visiting museums, but short on time? This tour is for you. Designed by our knowledgeable visitor assistants, it will introduce you to the Museum's spirit collection, the futuristic Cocoon and our Wildlife Garden.

The Attenborough Studio

We start at the Attenborough Studio, which you can find by staying left after entering Hintze Hall and following our signs to the Darwin Centre. In this hi-tech space you will find scientist-led talks, specimen handling and other interesting events, including:

  • Nature Live - visit the Museum’s What’s on section for today’s topic and times
  • short films

Zoology spirit building

You can find the Museum’s spirit collection next to the Attenborough Studio. Named after the alcohol used to preserve its 22 million specimens, our spirit collection includes:

  • an octopus
  • a lesser vampire bat
  • a giant toad

Cocoon

Next up is our futuristic Cocoon, which houses millions of insect and plant specimens, as well as the Museum’s many scientists, who you can see working in their laboratories. The top two floors of this building are open to the public, and as you work your way down to the fifth floor, you will discover:

  • butterflies, tarantulas and the goliath beetle
  • digital exhibits featuring Museum scientists
  • interactive displays, including the Inside Explorer Table
  • a specimen preparation area

Wildlife Garden

Having emerged from the Museum's Cocoon, make your way downstairs and step through the glass doors to the Darwin Centre Courtyard. From here, follow the signs to our Wildlife Garden where you can find:

  • a bee tree
  • greyface dartmoor sheep (they stay in the garden for between six and nine weeks)
  • pond life drop-in workshops

Galleries and Museum map

Discover what you can see and do in our other galleries, and find out how to get around with our Museum map.

Behind-the-Scenes Spirit Collection Tour

Go backstage in the Zoology spirit building and see many specimens that aren't open to the public.

Please consider supporting the Museum and our scientific research