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Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center
14390 Air and Space Museum Parkway, Chantilly, VA 20151
703-572-4118
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Ranked #1 of 11 Attractions in Chantilly
Type: Museums, Specialty Museums, Science Museums
Useful Information: Activities for older children
Attraction Details
Useful Information: Activities for older children
Toronto
Top Contributor
115 reviews 115 reviews
56 attraction reviews
Reviews in 43 cities Reviews in 43 cities
127 helpful votes 127 helpful votes
“Trip Highlight!!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 8, 2012

This was really one the the highlights of our recent trip to DC.

If you are driving to DC, make sure to get to this place on your way in to town or if you are already in DC, I beleive there are tour buses that will take you to this museum.

I've been to other museums and this place could easily charge $25 per person admission but, like other museums nearby this place is free. People really shouldn't complain about the $15 charge for parking.

We went on Thanksgiving Day, and it seemed that this place wasn't that busy which was great for us. This place has great opening hours, although I felt bad for everyone having to work on a holiday.

The space shuttle Discovery and Concorde were really cool to see but the best plane was the SR-71 Blackbird. This thing is a beast.

The store on site has lots of cool merchandise to purchase as well so you'll be able to buy the coolest gifts for all your friends.

Visited November 2012
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Virginia
Top Contributor
204 reviews 204 reviews
43 attraction reviews
Reviews in 89 cities Reviews in 89 cities
69 helpful votes 69 helpful votes
“Great for All Ages”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 5, 2012

I've been here twice in the last few weeks and I'm sure I'll be visiting again. One visit was on the Friday after Thanksgiving when many are looking for things to do, other than shop. Even though there appeared to be a lot of people (judging by the parking lot) there was plenty of space once you entered the museum. Planes/helicopters/gliders are all placed hanging and on the ground to get the most out of the huge space that is available. You can view the aircraft from a second story walkway or from ground level. The only thing we missed that day was the observation tower, which is a must for youngsters. The line was just too long for my granddaughter to wait it out.
When I returned with my grandson a few days ago, we went straight to the tower and there was no line at all for the elevator that whisked us up to the seventh floor. There, my grandson was fascinated as he had a view of planes coming in for a landing at Dulles airport, first on one runway and then another. I think we spent almost an hour up there as he went from one side to the other.
For the older kids there were some simulators, but we didn't try them. For adults, there is a lot of information about each of the aircraft that is displayed. The layout of the museum is easy to maneuver. The left wing of the museum is commercial aviation and early military, the right wing is recent military aircraft while straight back you'll find spacecraft. Anchoring it all in the center is the SR-71 Blackbird. There is also a viewing area in the spacecraft area where you can watch technicians work at turning old planes into the pieces that can be exhibited.
If you're looking for souvenirs, the upstairs store (on your left as you pass security) is always busy. They have a kiosk near the simulators downstairs that also sells souvenirs and it was never crowded. There is no cost to the museum itself, but parking will cost you $15 so bring the gang.

Visited December 2012
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Charles Town, West Virginia
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14 reviews 14 reviews
9 attraction reviews
Reviews in 12 cities Reviews in 12 cities
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
“Lots to See; Spend Some Time”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed December 4, 2012

The main attractions here are the aircraft -- from hang gliders to the Discovery Space Shuttle and everything in between -- all on display in the cavernous space. There are artifacts such as engines and pilot clothing, etc. I'm a "local,: and have been here 3 times. Be aware that you must pay for parking, but admission is free.

Visited April 2012
Was this review helpful? Yes 1
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Charles Town, West Virginia
Contributor
14 reviews 14 reviews
9 attraction reviews
Reviews in 12 cities Reviews in 12 cities
10 helpful votes 10 helpful votes
“Lots to See; Spend Some Time”
4 of 5 stars Reviewed December 4, 2012

The main attractions here are the aircraft -- from hang gliders to the Discovery Space Shuttle and everything in between -- all on display in the cavernous space. There are artifacts such as engines and pilot clothing, etc. I'm a "local,: and have been here 3 times. Be aware that you must pay for parking, but admission is free.

Visited April 2012
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Chicago, Illinois
Senior Contributor
44 reviews 44 reviews
5 attraction reviews
Reviews in 18 cities Reviews in 18 cities
14 helpful votes 14 helpful votes
“Much better than the Mall”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed December 4, 2012

We went to see the Shuttle and had a great visit. We got to see the Concorde and way more planes than are at the site on the mall. Definitely take the drive to see this if you are all interested in air and space travel.

Visited December 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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