Sunday, February 15, 2015

The National Air and Space Museum, Washington DC

In a city where there’s so much to see, you need to plan your visit carefully to make the most of the time you have available.  If you have any interest in flight and/or space travel, then one of the must do items on your Washington DC itinerary is a visit to the Smithsonian’s National Air and Space Museum.  Even those with little more than a passing interest will find themselves caught up in the magic of space travel when they come face to face with aircraft that have actually been into space or are able to touch a rock that once belonged on the moon. 

Many of the exhibits at this museum, which has no obligatory entry fee, are either the real artefacts that went into the air or space, or are the back-up ones which would have went on the missions had the first equipment failed.  There are two main areas to the museum, the National Mall Building, and the newer  Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center. 

In the National Mall Building you can find exhibits as historically diverse as “The Spirit of St Louis” in which Charles Lindbergh made the first transatlantic solo flight, and the Apollo 11 Command module.  The Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center is home to items such as the Enola Gay, and the space shuttle “Enterprise” (you can find the original filming model of the starship USS Enterprise in the lower level of the museum gift store!). 

With hands on teaching exhibits on such subjects as planetary science, as well as the artefacts, the National Air and Museum is not only interesting to adults who have lived through many of the flight achievement firsts noted at the museum, but it’s also educational and fun for kids, making it a perfect family destination.

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