All trails are currently CLOSED. Trails reopen May 1.
Up close with a mountain lion

Know Before You Go

last updated 3/30/2021

The live animal exhibit trail and hiking trails are CLOSED for the season and will reopen May 1, 2021. Online tickets will be available in late April. Check back for reservations.


Please review the information on this page before your visit as conditions may change. The Science Center follows New Hampshire's guidelines to keep guests, staff, volunteers, animals, and our community healthy. We need you to do your part. Thank you for your patience and compliance.

Before Your Visit
  • Our capacity is limited. All visitors, including members, must make reservations and pay in advance for tickets online for a specific date and arrival time. Members must show their membership card upon arrival.
  • See the Hours and Admission page for details about special admission.
  • If you are sick or not feeling well, please stay home and come back another time. We will reschedule your tickets as available or refund your purchase.
  • Please come prepared. We are a carry in/carry out facility. Remember that food and drink (except for water) are not allowed on the animal exhibit trail for the safety of our animals.
On the Trail
  • All visitors ages 3 and older must wear face coverings to help keep our animals, other members of the public, volunteers, and staff safe, as recommended by state officials.
  • Your family group must maintain a physical distance of six feet from other family groups.
  • Hand sanitizer is available at each trail exhibit.
  • Restroom use is limited to one person or family group at a time.
  • Guests must follow a one-way path on the live animal exhibit trail to help ensure safe physical distancing. Guests should not backtrack. Re-entry is not allowed.
  • Some buildings and exhibits are closed. See our trail map.
  • The picnic area is closed and food is not available onsite. Limited picnic tables are available in the parking lot.
  • Drinking water fountains are not operating. Bring your own water or buy bottled water at the outdoor retail kiosk.
  • The gate to Kirkwood Gardens is closed. To visit the garden, drive to it and park there. The bathrooms there are closed.
What We Are Doing to Keep You Safe
  • Limiting daily attendance and requiring pre-purchased timed tickets.
  • Cleaning restrooms and exhibits multiple times per day.
  • Closing some exhibits and building.
  • Providing hand sanitizer along the trail at exhibits.
  • Requiring guests to wear face masks (age 3+).
  • Limiting contact between visitors and staff.
  • Screening staff prior to work. Employees are required to complete a health screening questionnaire followed by a temperature check. Only those who pass both the questionnaire and temperature check are allowed to report for work.
Squam Lake Cruises
  • Squam Lakes Cruises are operating at reduced capacity.
  • Cruises operate with side curtains open to provide maximum ventilation and air flow.
  • Binoculars are disinfected after each passenger use.
  • Dress appropriately for the weather and remember it is cooler on the lake. Be prepared for rain.
  • There are no combination (trail and cruise) tickets this year.
  • Private Charters are a great way to see Squam Lake with your family group.
Other Things to Know
  • The Howling Coyote Gift Shop operates an outdoor gift kiosk in lieu of indoor shopping.
  • You may bring your own stroller but none are available to borrow on site.

We are committed to the health and safety of our visitors, volunteers, staff and animals. Please help us keep everyone safe by following the posted instructions and following directions from our staff. There is an inherent risk of exposure to COVID-19 in any public place where people are present. COVID-19 is an extremely contagious disease that spreads through person-to-person contact and can lead to severe illness and death. By visiting Squam Lakes Natural Science Center, you voluntarily assume all risks related to exposure to COVID-19.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I leave and come back the same day?

No, guests must complete their visit before leaving.

After I purchase my reservation and enter, will my time be limited or restricted?

Each timed reservation group should have more than enough time to see all available and open exhibits, however it is important to note that the trail will be one-way, encouraging guests to move along while adhering to the physical distancing recommendations set by the state and CDC. We ask guests to refrain from backtracking.

I have free passes or use of a library membership. Can I use them?

Call 603-968-7194 x 7 to reserve tickets for a specific date and time. Bring your free passes or library membership form with you when you visit.

Will you be open if it is raining?

Yes, we will be open regardless of the weather, so dress accordingly. All tickets are rain-or-shine. Refunds, rainchecks, and rescheduling are not available due to weather.
Still have questions? Contact us at
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