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“Very informational” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Spaceport America

Spaceport America
Sierra County, Nearest town is Truth or Consequences, NM
1 575.373.6110
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Stow, Ohio
Senior Contributor
23 reviews 23 reviews
11 attraction reviews
Reviews in 13 cities Reviews in 13 cities
24 helpful votes 24 helpful votes
“Very informational”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed November 4, 2012

Our tour guide was excellant. This tour is not for everyone but for my husband it was perfect. Why we came to T or C was to take this tour. We actually got to go out on the runway. This will stop soon, as flights start, no more tourists on the runway. NM is very ahead of it's time with space and you will learn a lot about this on the tour. Kudos to all of it. As others have noted, this is ongoing. There was no aircraft there to view but by taking this tour now you will be doing things that others can not do coming up when the program gets going in full swing. It's kind of neat to think I got to go on the runway with the tour van, as close as I'll get to this trip unless I win the lottery to afford the ticket. LOL This tour will be something to look back on as this adventure gets going.

Visited October 2012
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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22 reviews from our community

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Date | Rating
  • English first
  • Any
English first
Santa Fe, New Mexico
Contributor
14 reviews 14 reviews
5 attraction reviews
Reviews in 5 cities Reviews in 5 cities
50 helpful votes 50 helpful votes
“Spaceport America”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed October 17, 2012

I drove 30 miles from TorC (not 20, as advertised) to get there. It was a Sunday, and a direct shot, with very little traffic. I was behind a Scenic tours van and pulled up with it at the security checkpoint. However, I could not get in. I was informed one needs to call ahead in advance, make a reservation with the tour, and go through TSA for clearance. I was quoted $50-80 for such a tour. Also, one STILL cannot go inside the Spaceport, as the van merely drives around the hanger(s). I now understand why many of the 'locals' have not gone there.
The drive from TorC takes one past the Elephant Butte Recreational area, and along the Jornada del Muerto. It is a pretty and easy drive.

Visited October 2012
Was this review helpful? Yes 3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Pennsylvania
Top Contributor
124 reviews 124 reviews
56 attraction reviews
Reviews in 83 cities Reviews in 83 cities
104 helpful votes 104 helpful votes
“Expensive - but you must keep in mind it is a work in progress”
3 of 5 stars Reviewed August 2, 2012

First thing to consider if you are thinking of taking this tour is that it is a work in progress. It is not complete. There are no spacecraft to see. There are no operations going on.

Your tour begins at your assigned pick up location (for us it was in the town of Truth or Consequences) across from the Pelican Spa in their parking lot. A "Follow the Sun" tour van arrives to pick you up and drives through the town pointing out some sights and explaining its history. You drive for about 45 minutes to the Spaceport site and have to provide government issued ID to the security booth for entrance. The van then drives you past the terminal and points out how the terminal was built to the shape of the mountains and blend in with its surroundings; that was kind of neat.

Next, you drive a few feet to the operations center (which was vacant at the time we were there) and you get to look in the windows at the empty space. Then, you drive on the actual runway and park to take some pictures of the runway. I believe the man said it was 15,000 feet long.

Next, you then drive to the spaceport entrance but you are only allowed to get within 100 feet of the building as construction was going on inside. Here you take a few more pictures.

You are there for approximately 20 minutes or so and learn about what Virgin Gallatic is developing and other interesting details about the site and Spaceport America's purpose.

When we left, we then drove to a reseovior and walked around a bit. Next stop is at a dam. More pictures.

All, in all, it was $60 a person and if you are really interested in space history and this type of thing, or want to be a person who can say they stood on the runway of Spaceport America, then I recommend the trip. Otherwise, it was alot of money for nothing.

P.S. Unrelated to this review, but on the way out of town, be sure and stop at Maria's Mexican Restaurant (on the left hand side) as we had the best mexican food ever at a very reasonable price!

Visited July 2012
Was this review helpful? Yes 5
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Singapore, Singapore
Senior Reviewer
7 reviews 7 reviews
3 attraction reviews
Reviews in 7 cities Reviews in 7 cities
17 helpful votes 17 helpful votes
“WoW - Must See if you are in NM”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed July 29, 2012

Mark, our guide did a fantastic job putting the site and the big plans for space travel into context and we learnt a lot - the kids aged 17 and 13 were fascinated too. Standing on the runway was really special - we will reflect on it when the spacecraft are doing their first takeoff. The location is 2 hours from albq, and the tour was 3 hours - so its a full day trip - but really excellent - we will be back!

Visited July 2012
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Cardiff
Top Contributor
331 reviews 331 reviews
153 attraction reviews
Reviews in 202 cities Reviews in 202 cities
242 helpful votes 242 helpful votes
“Dreams do come true!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed June 17, 2012

This was an amazing paradox, located in a remote area of New Mexico. Within 1/2 day (plus drive time), it is possible to share memories of the past and visions of the future. Anyone with an interest in military and or space travel will find it worthwhile.

First, I visited the White Sands Missile Range, where he first atomic bomb was detonated in 1945 and weapons of mass destruction prevail, the Space Shuttle Columbia landed in 1982, and there is also a National Monument with numerous environmental and educational programs for kids. I walked the outdoor missile site, but did not have time to tour the museum.

From there, I headed to Truth or Consequences, NM to board a van for the 40 minute drive out to a remote area for a tour the Spaceport America site. This is a glimpse into the future of what private investors can do, when given the opportunity without cumbersome government regulations. It is a glimpse into the future, where individuals who aspire to be astronauts will enjoy a flight into space and return, if they have the current $200,000 each. It is also a potential test site for drones and other future aviation projects by private companies.

The site is still under construction, but everything was done in typical Branson style and designed to be very environmentally friendly and energy efficient. We were able to see the unique hangar with Branson's signature "eye" design, learn much about the design and use of the building, peer into the control area thru glass, to actually drive on the runway as our guide simulated a take-off with the imaginary control tower(can't do this once it's operational) and to peek into the empty hangar that can house up to 5 planes/spaceships at a time. It is an inspiring facility in the middle of BLM land (for safety), so future development in the immediate area will be limited. It should be a boon to the towns nearby as they provide labor and services for future visitors.

This trip may be very emotional for anyone who has dreamed of experiencing space travel. It was impossible for a female in the 1960's, but has become more real for private citizens since the aircraft are being designed by Burt Rutan (X Prize winner), and the vision and capital provided by Richard Branson (Virgin Records, Virgin Atlantic, Virgin America, Virgin Galactic) and other entrepreneurs.

Visited June 2012
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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