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“A "must do" for the aviator buff” 5 of 5 stars
Review of Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center

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 9 attractions in Chantilly
Type: Museums, Specialty Museums, Science Museums
Useful Information: Activities for older children
Attraction Details
Useful Information: Activities for older children
Collierville, Tennessee
Top Contributor
223 reviews 223 reviews
140 attraction reviews
Reviews in 103 cities Reviews in 103 cities
147 helpful votes 147 helpful votes
“A "must do" for the aviator buff”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 12, 2013

If you enjoy flying, planes, and space, you'll think you've died and gone to heaven. We thoroughly enjoyed our visit here, but what made it exceptional was the tour led by docent, Sig Crossland. There are tours led twice a day and I would strongly advise you to take one of these tours. They don't just breeze you through and point out areas - they go into the history behind many of the exhibits (obviously they can't cover them all). We thought we were going on a 1/2 hour "highlights' tour, but the tour was 2.5 hours long and extremely informative. Sig patiently answered many questions and made the tour interesting for everyone. You can tell he loves this museum and is passionate about connecting people to it.

Don't get discouraged if it looks like there's going to be a lot of people on the tour - they broke the large group we were in into two groups and with the microphones they have, you can hear everything very clearly.

You can go into the "control" tower at the museum and I'd suggest you do that early as we understand the wait time can get quite long in the afternoons.

The one thing to be aware of is - the only place to eat here is a McDonalds that can get very crowded. You might want to time your eating to "off" hours (if there are any). One option may be to pack something in a cooler and eat it in your car - not from a cost perspective, but from a wait time perspective. Of course you'd have to weigh this against the wait time to get back into the museum since they have to search all bags - the lines weren't long when we were there.

Parking is $15, but everything else is free - a deal that can't be beat.

Visited April 2013
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Briabane
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29 reviews 29 reviews
8 attraction reviews
Reviews in 18 cities Reviews in 18 cities
7 helpful votes 7 helpful votes
“Amazing !!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 9, 2013

This would have to be one of the best air and space museums on the planet. You could easily spend a full day there, with interests one the entire family. Admission is free once you pay for parking $15.00, there are food facilities there as well. Very much recommended for anyone interested in aviation.

Visited May 2013
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This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
California
Senior Contributor
31 reviews 31 reviews
11 attraction reviews
Reviews in 16 cities Reviews in 16 cities
21 helpful votes 21 helpful votes
“Space out!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 7, 2013

Take time to see one of the IMAX movies. Totally enjoyed all the displays. Very well put together for such large items to work with. It was a nice way to view aviation and space travel all through the years! Highly recommended for all ages. Take at least 3 hours, time to watch an IMAX as well.

Visited May 2013
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McLean, Virginia
Top Contributor
300 reviews 300 reviews
85 attraction reviews
Reviews in 69 cities Reviews in 69 cities
94 helpful votes 94 helpful votes
“You'd need to visit every day for a week to see all the cool stuff”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 6, 2013

The Udvar-Hazy Center is the facility of the National Air & Space Museum where the truly big historical items are displayed. The place is huge, and has to be to house many dozens of full-size aircraft and spacecraft including a B-29 bomber and a space shuttle. Also on display are missiles, satellites, engines, etc., along with some personal items from famous people in history.

This place cannot fail to please any visitor who is the least bit interested in aircraft...or the history of aviation...or space exploration...or technology innovation...or the history of warfare. If you are interested in only one of those topics, you can still spend many hours just focusing on your area of interest. You can even find many items of interest if you are a sci-fi buff. Look around!

A $15 parking fee is charged for this location. Even though admission is nominally free, you still have to pay 15 bucks to park your car, and I frankly view it as an admission charge. The Center is in the middle of nowhere adjacent to the runways at Dulles Airport. Unless you take a cab, trust me, you are driving there.

I specifically timed my visit to see one of the IMAX movies at the time advertised on the current "Now Showing" flyer distributed by Air & Space Museum staff. Unfortunately, the Udvar-Hazy Center evidently alters its show times from what is published on the flyer. So, I missed the only showing that day of the specific movie I wanted to see.

Food is available from the on-site McDonald's outlet.

The gift shop has some interesting clothing and hobby items related to aviation and space exploration. The flight suits in toddler through adult sizes looked rather entertaining.

Visited May 2013
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Melbourne, Australia
Senior Contributor
42 reviews 42 reviews
27 attraction reviews
Reviews in 27 cities Reviews in 27 cities
11 helpful votes 11 helpful votes
“Don't miss!”
5 of 5 stars Reviewed May 6, 2013

The Space Shuttle Discovery is here in all it's glory. If this was the ONLY exhibit - I'd still mark it as excellent (it IS a space shuttle) - but there's so much more.

Every plane/flying vehicle imaginable is here. We took our two daughters (aged 9 and 11) and they had a great time as well. This museum is for EVERYONE - no matter your age or gender. Could not recommend more highly.

Visited April 2013
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