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National Museum of African American History and Culture
Book In Advance
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$69.00*
and up
Washington DC Hop-on Hop-off Bus Tour and...
Ranked #13 of 483 things to do in Washington DC
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: 2-3 hours
Useful Information: Activities for older children, Activities for young children, Stairs / elevator, Bathroom facilities, Food available for purchase, Wheelchair access
Reviewed 3 weeks ago

First, reserve tickets online in advance. You don't have to pay, but need to reserve a time to visit. And, try to book an early time. There is A LOT to see in this museum.
Second, plan how you will get there. Traffic can be hectic in DC and parking is not always easy, so get that figured out and allow yourself time to get there.
Third, eat lunch in the cafe!! It is the best museum food you will ever find. It is a full-fledged restaurant with fabulous meals that truly mirror various regions of the US and the common meals African Americans in those regions may have eaten. It's not cheap, but it's so good!
Now, about the museum itself. They will direct you towards the bottom levels first, which will allow you to learn this history in a chronological order. I highly recommend this method. Spend the bulk of your time in these lower levels. It is well worth it and is really the heart of the museum. On the upper levels, you will approach more of the current day / modern history. Here, you will find incredible artifacts and write-ups on athletes, musicians, chefs, entertainers, and other well-known African-Americans. This is an area where you might breeze through certain parts and focus on things that interest you to learn more about specific people. We spent about 5 hours exploring and could easily go back and continue to learn more.

2  Thank WPLandry
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ask_NMAAHC, Manager at National Museum of African American History and Culture, responded to this reviewResponded 3 weeks ago

Thank you for letting us know about your recent experience with NMAAHC and submitting a review.
Sincerely,
NMAAHC Visitor Services

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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"slave trade"
in 108 reviews
"sweet home"
in 64 reviews
"the upper floors"
in 75 reviews
"jim crow"
in 39 reviews
"timed passes"
in 32 reviews
"bottom floor"
in 73 reviews
"soul food"
in 21 reviews
"below ground"
in 27 reviews
"civil rights"
in 67 reviews
"months in advance"
in 50 reviews
"gift shop"
in 86 reviews
"american history"
in 82 reviews
"the lower level"
in 48 reviews
"wear comfortable shoes"
in 30 reviews
"emotional experience"
in 24 reviews
"free tickets"
in 28 reviews
"stand in line"
in 20 reviews
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84 - 88 of 2,101 reviews

Reviewed 3 weeks ago

We were able to get tickets on the website day-of at 6:30am, for 11am. You can spend hours there if you have the time. The building itself is striking. Exhibits are set up chronologically,beginning at the lowest level with the slave trade. It's crowded on that floor, but for a reason, to experience discomfort. So much to see and read.

As you work your way up, it's not as cramped. There are some short films along the way, worth viewing. The upper floors have additional exhibits.

It may take more than one visit to take it all in, but still worth it, even with limited time. So much to learn.

1  Thank mfnyc
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ask_NMAAHC, Manager at National Museum of African American History and Culture, responded to this reviewResponded 3 weeks ago

Thank you for letting us know about your recent experience with NMAAHC and submitting a review.
Sincerely,
NMAAHC Visitor Services

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed 3 weeks ago

Went on a Birthday trip to DC. was on my list of to-do. First thought wow, lines long and Im not even going to wait. Went around to rear, no line no wait. Im a Veteran so showed ID didnt need a time pass or nothing, walked right in. Start at bottom work your way up , just so must information you will never learn in school

1  Thank Denise F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ask_NMAAHC, Manager at National Museum of African American History and Culture, responded to this reviewResponded 3 weeks ago

Thank you for letting us know about your recent experience with NMAAHC and submitting a review.
Sincerely,
NMAAHC Visitor Services

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Reviewed 4 weeks ago

I made a return trip to the museum with a friend (who used to teach history) and now have visited every part of the museum. There were several school groups visiting, which meant crowding in some areas but on the whole the museum spaces were all still accessible. The cultural and sports exhibits are very well done, as is the story of the contributions of African Americans to the military, but the meat of the museum is in telling history. The history of slavery is sad and complicated. The slave trade was a particularly dark time in history where many were lost or enslaved while others were enriched. We both found the exhibits riveting and factual. We also found the stories of individuals, thought-leaders, progressives, protesters and more than a century and a half of difficult progress leading up to today to be carefully balanced in its presentation. Just the facts and images.

It is a museum to study and to cause one to reflect. We both had lived the most recent parts of the history being told and were struck by how much has changed from when we grew up, how far we have come and still how much further we need to go as a society. It is a museum where you can confront difficult truths and realities but also can be inspired by courage, bravery, convictions and dreams. It is a very important public space to have on the Mall in Washington, DC.

1  Thank waterandmore
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ask_NMAAHC, Manager at National Museum of African American History and Culture, responded to this reviewResponded 3 weeks ago

Thank you for letting us know about your recent experience with NMAAHC and submitting a review.
Sincerely,
NMAAHC Visitor Services

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Reviewed 4 weeks ago

Both the contents of the Museum and the architecture are amazing. There are three levels of the Museum: Slavery and Freedom, The Era of Segregation and 1968 and Beyond. Try to see as many short movies as possible. The Museum is free, but you must have a ticket. Ordertickets months in advance or go online at 6:30 am that day. We were able to get tickets through our Senator.

1  Thank jackie g
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Ask_NMAAHC, Manager at National Museum of African American History and Culture, responded to this reviewResponded 3 weeks ago

Thank you for letting us know about your recent experience. We actually have 6 levels of gallery spaces within our museum. It seems you only completed the lower 3 levels. Thank you for visiting and submitting a review.
Sincerely,
NMAAHC Visitor Services

Report response as inappropriate
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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