Visitor update: Coronavirus

COVID-19 Visitor information

Questacon is now open for self-guided 2-hour visits to Questacon. Explore select galleries (open during set times each session) and exciting live demonstrations. Timed sessions will be in place and pre-booked tickets are essential for entry. Tickets will not be available at the door.

For younger visitors aged 3-6 years, we have developed a special new early learning program – Questacon Science Sprouts. Each session runs for 60 minutes and includes a number of role play exercises, hands-on activity stations and a science show.

The safety of visitors, staff and the wider community is our top priority. We continue to take a conservative approach to reopening our doors and have a number of safety measures in place, including limiting numbers of visitors and ensuring all tickets are pre-booked online.

The Questacon Mission to Mars and Questacon Mission to Mars Junior tours have now finished. However, you can still see the impressive 7 metre Mars globe installation in Gallery 8.

While a visit to Questacon will be different for some time, our aim, as always, is to unlock your curiosity and inspire your imagination with the world of science and technology!

We look forward to seeing you at Questacon soon, where you can travel from the centre of an Earthquake, to the heart of a beehive, all the way to outer space!

FAQs

Will a visit to Questacon be different than it was before the pandemic?

While we are still offering interactive and immersive experiences, a visit to Questacon will continue to be different. Our doors are now open for pre-booked time sessions hourly from 9am daily. The last session will begin at 3pm. Questacon closes at 5pm daily. Each session runs for a maximum of 2 hours and includes allocated time in 5 galleries and exciting live demonstrations. Pre-booked tickets are essential for all visitors, including infants.

To ensure restrictions are followed and physical distancing can be observed, each timed session has a limited number of people who can attend. While these sessions run as a self-guided tour, each gallery will only be open for a set time to allow for cleaning between sessions.

The health and safety of visitors and staff is our top priority. You’ll notice signage in our galleries that shows how to safely interact with our exhibits. Please observe these safety signs and any directions given by our staff. Some exhibits can only be activated by our staff and others can be used by visitors, with safety precautions in place.

What can I see and do during my visit?

We are offering timed, ticketed 2-hour sessions that include allocated time in select galleries. Each gallery will be open for a specified time during your visit. Once a group has moved through a gallery, the gallery will be closed for cleaning. A one way directional route applies as you move through the Centre. Upon arrival you will be provided with a printed guide to help you plan your time in the Centre.

  • Gallery 1: Born or Built? examines the similarities and differences between humans and machines
  • Gallery 2: Fundamental explores classic science in exciting ways
  • Gallery 3: Experience the power and beauty of our Awesome Earth
  • Gallery 4: At Q Lab explore live science demonstrations alongside staff and see our busy honeybees in the Questacon Beehive
  • Gallery 5: Enjoy an exciting array of hands-on exhibits
  • Gallery 8: Questacon’s newest interactive gallery experience including our 7m Mars globe

We have installed new signage in each gallery to show how to safely interact with our exhibits. Please follow these instructions and any directions given by Questacon staff. Some exhibits can only be demonstrated by our staff and others can be used by visitors, with safety precautions in place.

Following your session, you are welcome to browse the Questacon Shop.

There will be a number of audio experiences and apps to enhance your Questacon experience! Please bring your own device to download the apps. If you don’t have your own device during your visit, our team will be able to demonstrate how these apps work.

Are all the galleries and exhibits open?

To ensure we can follow health and physical distancing guidelines we need to limit access to some Questacon experiences. Unfortunately this means exhibits such as Free Fall, and galleries including Mini Q and Excite@Q are closed for now. The usual activities in The Shed, including Science Time, are also currently unavailable.

How can I buy tickets to Questacon and what is the cost?

From 8 December 2020, our doors will be open for pre-booked times sessions, running hourly from 9am daily. The last session will begin at 3pm. Questacon closes at 5pm daily. Each session runs for a maximum of two hours, where you can enjoy allocated time in 5 galleries live science demonstrations and visit the Questacon Shop.

  • To ensure restrictions are followed and physical distancing can be observed each timed session has a limited number of people
  • Every visitor will need a ticket for entry, regardless of age (this includes babies and toddlers)
  • All tickets need to be pre-booked and paid for online
  • Additional visitors arriving with your group without a valid ticket for the correct session will not be permitted entry
  • Please ensure you book for the correct session day and time as we are not able to admit visitors for alternative sessions without a valid ticket
  • In case we need to contact you about your visit, please ensure you enter your correct contact details are provided when booking
  • Bookings cannot be made over the phone, email, Instagram or Facebook – Please see our tickets page for information on purchasing tickets.
  • Due to the limited number of available spots per session, we are unable to reserve tickets for payment on arrival and we do not have a waitlist system
  • All visitors will need to register their visit using the Check In CBR app

General admission

Ticket General price Members' price
Adult $24.50 $11.25
Concession card $18.90 $11.25
Companion card Free Free
Children 4-16 Years $18.90 $11.25
Child under 4 Free Free
Family (2 adults 2 children $73.40 $37.75
Family (2 adults 3 children $73.40 $37.75

Every visitor requires a ticket for entry, including children under 4.

Science Sprouts

Ticket type Ticket price
Adult $11.25
Child (3-6) $11.25
Child (0-2) $2.50

What health and safety precautions are in place?

The health and safety of our visitors, staff and volunteers is high priority for Questacon.

During your visit, we will do all we can to ensure the safety of our visitors and staff, in line with public health advice.

Our safety measures include:

  • Physical distancing - floor markers and other signage is in place
  • Hand sanitiser stations located throughout the building
  • Safety signage to indicate how to interact with Questacon exhibits
  • Regular and additional cleaning procedures
  • Separate entry and exit doors and one-way movement throughout the building
  • The Members’ Lounge is closed
  • Lockers and drinking fountains are unavailable for the time being

How you can help:

  • Follow directions from our staff
  • Ensure you maintain a distance of at least 1.5m from other people, in line with physical distancing guidelines
  • Practice good hygiene. Wash your hands well with soap and water. You will notice hand sanitiser in several locations during the tour.
  • Register your visit to Questacon with the Check In CBR App prior to entering the Centre.

Please do not come to Questacon if you:

  • are unwell
  • have been to any of the current COVID-19 affected locations within 14 days of your planned visit
  • have been advised by health authorities to self-isolate.

If you are unwell, have been to any of the current COVID-19 affected locations within 14 days of your planned visit and/or have been advised by health authorities to self-isolate, we can arrange a refund for your pre-booked tickets. To request a refund in line with our Terms and Conditions, please forward your Ticketek booking confirmation email to info@questacon.edu.au prior to the booked session time. Unfortunately we will not be able to refund tickets if the cancellation request is not made in writing or is made after the time of your booking.

Please visit the ACT Health and NSW Health websites for more information and details of COVID-19 affected locations.

For the latest health advice, please visit the Australian Government Department of Health website.

What is the Check In CBR app and why do I need to register?

When you arrive at Questacon, you will need to register your details with the Check In CBR app.

The Check In CBR app enables individuals to register their details when they visit Canberra venues and have this data stored securely with ACT Health in case contact tracing is needed due to a confirmed case of COVID-19.

You can download the Check In CBR App to your device from the Google Play Store or the Apple App Store. You will need to register your details the first time you use it. When you visit participating venues, such as Questacon, open the app, select ‘Check In Now’ then hover your smartphone over the QR code to check in.

At Questacon, the QR code will be displayed on signs in the foyer. If you need any assistance, please speak with someone from our team. You will also need to register any additional people in your group who don’t have their own device to register on.

During the COVID-19 public health emergency non-essential businesses and undertakings are required by law to ask for the first name and phone number of people who attend their venue. If you do not have a device with you and are unable to use the Check In CBR app, we will record your details manually.

Visit the ACT Government online for more information about the Check In CBR app.

When will Questacon fully reopen?

Due to the nature of Questacon’s interactive exhibits, we are continuing to take a conservative and phased approach to reopening. We will announce any changes on our social media pages and website, so please keep an eye on these pages for updates.

Will Mini Q be open?

Unfortunately Mini Q is closed for the time being. We know our little scientists want to experience Mini Q as soon as it is safe to do so. Due to the particular nature of the displays in Mini Q, it is taking a little longer to make sure it is the best COVID Safe experience. We are assessing how and when we may be able to reopen Mini Q consistent with current social distancing guidelines and health regulations. We will announce more information on our social media pages and website when dates and details are confirmed.

For Mini Q aged visitors we have developed a special new early learning program – Questacon Science Sprouts. Each session runs for 60 minutes and includes a number of role-play exercises, hands-on activity stations and a dedicated show.

What is Questacon Science Sprouts and how do I book?

Questacon Science Sprouts is a new interactive role-play experience for 3-6 year olds and their carers. On this 60 minute guided adventure, little sprouts will be able to explore the world around them by participating in a mini show before jumping into role-play activities and engaging with hands-on science experiments. Children will experiment, discover and have the opportunity to ask lots of questions for each of our exciting topics in a friendly and inclusive environment.

Science Sprouts sessions do not include time in any of the Questacon galleries, including Mini Q.

How do I book Science Sprouts and what is the cost?

Science Sprouts Sessions will be held at 9:30am and 11:30am from Wednesday to Saturday each week. Sessions run for 60 minutes. Tickets can be booked through our tickets page.

  • To ensure restrictions are followed and physical distancing can be observed, each timed session has a limited number of people
  • Every visitor will need a ticket for entry, regardless of age (this includes babies and toddlers)
  • All tickets need to be pre-booked and paid for online, by 7:30am on the day of your visit.
  • Additional visitors arriving with your group without a valid ticket for the correct session will not be permitted entry
  • Please ensure you book for the correct session day and time as we are not able to admit visitors for alternative sessions without a valid ticket
  • In case we need to contact you about your visit, please ensure you enter correct contact details when booking
  • Bookings cannot be made over the phone, email, Instagram or Facebook – Please see our tickets page for information on purchasing tickets
  • Due to the limited number of available spots per session, we are unable to reserve tickets for payment on arrival and we do not have a waitlist system.

Science Sprouts is a paid program and fees apply. Every visitor will need a ticket for entry, including children under 3.

Science Sprouts Tickets

Ticket type Ticket price
Adult $11.25
Child (3-6) $11.25
Child (0-2) $2.50

Can I attend both Science Sprouts and general sessions?

Yes, visitors are most welcome to attend both Science Sprouts and General Admission sessions provided they have booked the appropriate tickets for both. Please note, Science Sprouts sessions run for one hour. If you wish to attend a general session afterwards you will need to book those sessions seperately.

My child is almost 3; can they come to Science Sprouts?

The content for Science Sprouts is tailored to engage 3 to 6 year olds and their carers. We ask that you wait until your child is 3 before booking them in to this program.

My child is 7 years old; can they come to Science Sprouts?

Science Sprouts is tailored to engage 3 to 6 year olds and their carers. For children aged 7 and above our general admission 2-hour sessions are more suitable.

Can I bring my child’s older and/or younger siblings to Science Sprouts?

Science Sprouts is tailored to engage 3 to 6 year olds and their carers. Children outside this age range can attend a session, however;

  • They must be pre-booked and paid for in advance of the session
  • They will not be able to take part in all of the activities due to content suitability
  • Parents/ guardians are responsible for their conduct and must ensure they do not disturb the session for the intended participants
  • They should not attend if they are not coming with a child aged between 3 and 6 years

As a Questacon Member do I need to pay to attend a Science Sprouts session?

Yes, Questacon members do need to pay for Science Sprouts. The benefits of the Q Club membership program are currently on hold.

When will there be new Science Sprouts topics to book?

Science Sprouts is a new program and new topics will be introduced over the coming months. Keep an eye on our social media and website for updates about when new Science Sprouts themes are available to book.

When will Science Time start running again?

Science Time at Questacon is on hold for the time being. However, our Questacon Science Sprouts program has been specially developed for children aged between 3 and 6 years.

I have booked tour tickets but have been in a COVID-19 affected location, what do I do?

If you have been in any of the current COVID-19 affected locations within 14 days of your planned visit, please do not come to Questacon. To request a refund in line with our Terms and Conditions, please forward your Ticketek booking confirmation email to info@questacon.edu.au prior to the booked session time. Unfortunately we will not be able to refund tickets if the cancellation request is not made in writing or is made after the time of your booking. 

Please visit the ACT Health and NSW Health websites for more information and details of affected locations.

For the latest health advice, please visit the Australian Government Department of Health website.

I have booked but I don’t feel well on the day, what should I do?

If you are unwell on the day of your tour, please do not come to Questacon. To request a refund in line with our Terms and Conditions, please forward your Ticketek booking confirmation email to info@questacon.edu.au prior to the booked session time. Unfortunately we will not be able to refund tickets if the cancellation request is not made in writing or is made after the time of your booking. 

If you feel unwell during your visit, please speak with one of our staff.

For the latest health advice, please visit the Australian Government Department of Health website.

Is parking available close to Questacon?

If you are driving to Questacon, you can find parking close to the building in the car parks on Parkes Place. Paid parking applies on weekdays.

Is the Questacon Shop open?

The physical Questacon Shop will be open at the end of each session for visitors with session tickets. Alternatively, the Questacon Shop is open for online shopping year-round. Choose from a large selection of all things science-related including science kits, books, board games, gifts and more.

‘Click and Collect’ is also available for local orders. This will operate as a drive-through collection only. Please visit the Questacon Shop website for more information on how you can take advantage of this.

Is the Café open?

While our indoor café remains closed for now, we are preparing to open the POD on the Rear Science Terrace with takeaway food and drink options in the coming weeks. Stay tuned for updates!

How can I find out more about my Q Club membership?

The usual benefits of Q Club membership are currently on hold. All memberships will be extended to compensate for time lost during the COVID-19 closure and during our current visitor offering.

Q Club members are welcome to attend any available sessions at members’ prices. Tickets must be pre-booked online. You will need to enter your membership number during the booking process and membership will be verified prior to the session commencing.

If you have any questions about your Q Club membership, please contact our membership team for assistance.

Can free passes be used to book Questacon timed sessions?

We are currently unable to accept free passes including the National Capital Education Tourism Project Teachers’ Pass. All Questacon free pass expiry dates will be extended to compensate for time lost by the COVID-19 shutdown.

Can I use my reciprocal membership?

Although the usual benefits of the Q Club membership are currently on hold, Questacon members can still take advantage of free or discounted entry at a number of our reciprocal science centres and museums. We recommend you call each centre or museum before you travel to see what current discounts and offers are available.

Questacon is pleased to offer reciprocal members visiting Questacon the same discounted entry prices as our Questacon members.

A Questacon membership card or reciprocal membership card must be shown to staff at check-in.

Is the members’ lounge open?

No, unfortunately the Members’ Lounge is closed for now.

Accessibility

Questacon is accessible for visitors who may need additional support to enjoy their visit.

All galleries have ramp and/or lift access. If you require assistance with mobility aids, loops and other adjustments, please let us know what we can do to assist. Unfortunately, we are unable to offer Auslan interpretations or multi-lingual experiences at this time. Hearing loops and voice amplification for our presenters will be available for visitors who have a hearing impairment.

We are an Autism Friendly organisation. For those visitors who have heightened sensitivity to noise, the visit will involve fewer visitors in the building. However, there are some loud noises during the experience.

If you require additional support during your visit, please contact our team so that our presenters and staff can help make your visit more comfortable.

Is Questacon accepting 3infun tickets?

We are not accepting 3infun tickets at this time. Once restrictions ease we will provide further updates. For further information, please visit www.3infun.com.au.

Can school groups visit Questacon?

School group visits will recommence in 2021. Each school session runs for a maximum of two hours and includes allocated time in 5 galleries and exciting live demonstrations.

To ensure restrictions are followed and physical distancing can be observed, there will be limited school sessions offered. Each timed session has a limited number of students who can attend and pre-booking is required for all schools. We recommend no more than 4 teachers attend per school session. While these sessions run as a self-guided tour, each gallery will only be open for a set time. Once a session group has moved through a gallery, the gallery will close to allow for our follow-me cleaning to occur. To allow this to run smoothly, a one way directional route applies. School groups will not cross paths with general public sessions

To make a school group booking or to change your upcoming booking, please visit the Book Canberra Excursions website. We will not apply any cancellation fees during this period.

If you have any further enquiries regarding school bookings, please email group.bookings@questacon.edu.au.

Are teacher professional learning workshops and national touring programs running?

In 2020 we went digital with our workshops and programs but as the COVID situation in Australia improves we are looking to go back to face-to-face activities across the country in 2021.

Questacon Science Circus, Questacon Innovation Programs and Engineering is Elementary have finished for 2020 and will recommence in Term 1, 2021 with both virtual and in-person offerings.

Engineering is Elementary is planning to run in-person teacher professional learning workshops in every state and territory. We will also continue to run virtual workshops for those unable to attend in-person.

Questacon Science Circus will be providing in-school science shows, educator professional learning and other activities in ACT/NSW, Queensland and Tasmania.

Questacon Innovation Programs will be providing in-school workshops, regional Invention Conventions and professional learning for informal educators (libraries/community organisations) in Tasmania, Northern Territory and New South Wales.

Questacon Innovation Programs will continue to offer virtual excursions to schools across Australia for both primary and secondary students. These can be delivered to a single classroom or to dispersed students.

Due to the continuing unpredictable COVID-19 situation we may have to cancel or postpone tours at very short notice. If this is the case we will communicate changes as soon as possible and will look to provide virtual workshops where possible.

If you have any questions or would like to enquire about making a booking please contact outreach.bookings@questacon.edu.au or phone 1800 889 995.

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