We noticed that you're using an unsupported browser. The TripAdvisor website may not display properly.We support the following browsers:
Windows: Internet Explorer, Mozilla Firefox, Google Chrome. Mac: Safari.
National Museum of African American History and Culture
Open today: 10:00 AM - 5:30 PM
Save
  
Ways to Experience National Museum of African American History and Culture
from $69.00
More Info
from $46.95
More Info
Reviews (2,721)
Filter reviews
2,721 results
Traveler rating
2,323
281
59
20
38
Traveler type
Time of year
LanguageAll languages
More languages
2,323
281
59
20
38
Show reviews that mention
All reviews slave trade sweet home the upper floors jim crow timed passes soul food three floors bottom floor below ground civil rights months in advance the lower level american history gift shop free tickets wear comfortable shoes eye opening
Filter
Updating list...
2,584 - 2,589 of 2,721 reviews
Reviewed September 29, 2016

Overall, we really enjoyed our visit to this museum and are excited to return. Below are a few observations from our visit.

Getting there
It is very close to the Federal Triangle DC metro stop, so it is very accessible by public transportation and only a 7-10 minute walk from the metro stop to the museum (close to Washington Monument). Parking garages are nearby as well.

Experience
It is a beautiful museum inside and out, with a very distinctive bronze exterior. The inside is a pale grey which juxtaposes the colorful exhibits and paintings on the wall. Each floor represents a different period, starting with a closer look into slavery in the basement of the museum to the positive influence of African American music and dance on the top floor. The entire experience was authentic and honest about African American history without the "guilt" or "shame." It was truly mind-blowing to know that I was that limited in my knowledge of African American history because I am an American. With that said, I learned a lot and hope to return soon!

Food
The Sweet Home Café is separated into four different types of cuisines: Agricultural South, Western Range, Creole Coast and a cuisine that represents the North. The food ranges between $14.00 - $20.00, but plan to spend at least $50 for two people for lunch. I ordered the catfish po'boy from the Creole Coast because we didn't want to wait for the Gulf Shrimp & Grits. The food was pretty good for a café.

Unfortunately, it was so crowded that I could not visit the gift shop. However, that is what second trips are for!

Of course, it is VERY busy because it is a new museum, however it is definitely worth the visit!

Date of experience: September 2016
Thank EndaTravel
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 29, 2016

The museum has an exquisite exterior and an interior to match. I went during opening week and the excitement was palpable. I was educated, inspired, awed and moved. I started with floor that was dedicated to sports, religion, medicine and the armed forces. I also visited the floor dedicated to African American contributions to the arts. I ended with the casket of Emmitt Till.

The crowds were large, which did make it difficult to get through the museum. There was a 45 minute wait for the gift shop as well as the cafe. I hope to visit these areas during the next trip.

It is not feasible to see everything in one day so definitely plan on a series of visits.

Date of experience: September 2016
1  Thank s y
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 28, 2016 via mobile

I was so grateful to visit this museum in its opening week.

Let me start with logistics however.

Etix timed tickets allowed us to visit during this first week. So much to see in this beautiful museum. We all appreciated timed tickets and got in line about half an hour ahead of our time. We entered promptly at our time.

The process for entry wasn't totally clear for the timed tickets. I'm sure they are extremely busy and working out some kinks. There were three cue lines. I never figured out what the point of that was.

There weren't maps for the exhibits but brilliantly they had maps you could take a photo of with your phone. There's an app fro guide you also (see website).

Basics like the path to the exit or where bathrooms are, weren't as evident. The elevators are run by a person and slow.

Etix is already sold out through January 2017.
You can get tickets by standing in line daily (1,000 available per day I believe).

Re: exhibits
Beautifully done! I read in advance and mapped out my approach as I frequently get overwhelmed. The lower levels, below first floor,were the beginning of the exhibits, It was tremendously overcrowded. So much for pre-planning.

We opted for a higher floor that covered African Americans in war and sports. I saw Ali's boxing robe! I loved seeing the videos of his quick tongue and mind. An Ali remembered.

Our business work team came as a retreat. A bonding experience.

My colleague and I talked about where we were at the time of these historic events. How we perceived them then and now. The Olympic "raise your fist" and the comparison to "taking a knee" now. Jesse Owens. The skill but also the courage. The rise but lack of Black coaches in the NFL and colleges.

In an hour we had not even covered a portion of one floor. So -- great walking shoes, and time will be needed!

I highly recommend this museum. I'm glad I live here so I will get back to finish the visit. I'm sure I will need 4-8 more trips - when I can get tickets!

Date of experience: September 2016
Thank NEVenturer
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 28, 2016

This new museum is beautiful, both inside and out. It's moving, informative, and a long-overdue addition to the Smithsonian family of museums. If you start at the bottom, and work your way up, you start with the story of African Americans in North America -- slavery, reconstruction, through civil rights, and into the current era. Especially moving is the casket of Emmet Till...such an iconic piece of history.
It's going to be difficult to get in for awhile, due to the newness & popularity, but it's well worth putting on your list of 'must sees' in DC.

Date of experience: September 2016
1  Thank Kris M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed September 28, 2016 via mobile

My visit was on the third day of its opening. The crowds were massive and that made it a little difficult to see the exhibits. The scope of the museum is very large. You begin with slavery in the lowest level and progressively move up in time with the top level being about art and culture of the African American. There are large walls with quotations from great men and so much to see. The general atmosphere was that finally, African American's stories were given credence. Go there and spend time seeing and looking!

Date of experience: September 2016
Thank Klawonn
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
View more reviews