In line with NSW Health advice, the AM remains temporarily closed to the public. Follow us on social media to receive the latest updates regarding reopening. We look forward to seeing you online and hopefully onsite again soon.

As a result, the Early Birds: Autism and Sensory-Friendly Mornings program scheduled for Saturday 2 October has unfortunately been cancelled. If you have registered for this event, you will receive separate communication from us.

In the meantime, we encourage visitors to explore our online content hub, AM Inside Out, which offers fun activities for kids at home, fascinating stories and other ways to engage online with the AM’s collections, scientists and other programs.

Early birds in the Dinosaurs gallery
Early birds in the Dinosaurs gallery Image: Anna Kucera
© Australian Museum

Ages: All welcome!

Early Birds: Access Mornings provide a reduced sensory, relaxed and supportive environment prior to the Museum opening to the public for the day. This can make visiting the Museum easier for visitors on the autism spectrum or those who have other access requirements, together with their family and friends.


  • A supportive environment with limited visitors prior to the Museum opening at 10am
  • A designated quiet area for those needing to take a break
  • A Visual Story with more details on what to expect.
  • Staff trained in autism awareness and disability
  • A kiosk for an early morning beverage or snack. The main café will open at 10am
  • After 10am Early Birds are welcome to stay for the remainder of the day


  • Bookings essential. Places are limited and tickets should be booked in advance.
  • There will be multiple Early Birds events throughout the year.

The Australian Museum has worked with Autism Spectrum Australia to make this an accessible event.

The Australian Museum together with its Early Birds program has recently won Aspect’s Autism Friendly Achievement Award 2021. This award recognises significant achievements by an individual or organisation towards making the world more autism friendly.

This program is funded by a grant from the Australian Museum Foundation.


Early Birds is designed for visitors on the autism spectrum or those with sensory sensitivities. Features of this event may also benefit visitors with other access requirements and their families or friends. This event is for all ages.

Early Birds events align with the Australian Museum's Accessibility and Inclusion Action Plan 2018-21 (AIAP) to break down barriers that hinder the full and effective participation of people with access requirements, and create a place where everyone can be inspired to explore and understand our natural and cultural worlds. Early Birds is a gateway event where visitors become familiar with the Australian Museum in a safe and supportive environment, in order to feel comfortable and confident visiting us again.

  • Early Birds events have limited capacity to reduce crowds, queues and associated noise.
  • Lighting and sound levels will be adjusted, where possible, throughout the Museum.
  • Exhibitions will have lighting increased and loud, unexpected sounds such as dinosaurs roaring, switched off.
  • High sensory areas where lighting can't be increased due to conservation issues, will be indicated on the Museum map and in the Visual Story.
  • Hand-dryers will be turned off and paper towel will be available in toilet facilities.
  • PA announcements will be avoided from 8am-10am
  • A designated quiet room will be available for use to take a break and reset before continuing on your Museum adventure!
  • The first Early Birds event took place in January 2021. View blog here.

Yes. Early Birds are welcome to stay and enjoy the Museum for the remainder of the day, however, lighting and sound in exhibition spaces will return to previous levels along with other features.

Everything you would do during opening hours!

Early Birds events are scheduled to occur one Saturday morning during every NSW school holiday period. Dates for 2021 include 16 January, 10 April, 10 July and 2 October.

The Australian Museum is COVID Safe

The Australian Museum is observing strict physical distancing and hygiene measures to protect the health of visitors and staff and minimise the spread of COVID-19 (coronavirus).

Read the latest visitation information here.