Moderators: jsumali2, richierich, ua900, PanAm_DC10, hOMSaR

 
Sabena332
Topic Author
Posts: 14938
Joined: Wed May 09, 2001 3:57 am

National Air & Space Museum (Washington D.C.)

Sun Aug 24, 2003 5:16 am

Hi guys,

I will fly to Washington D.C. on Tuesday, I read in my guidebook that there is the National Air and Space Museum but they didn't provide much information about it. Has anyone been there and can you recommend a visit? I am mostly interested in civil aviation and not military aviation, so is a visit worth for me? How far away is it from the airport? (we have a hotel near Dulles airport).

Thanks in advance!

Patrick
NZ1's mother is a disgusting crack-whore and his father is a worthless alcoholic!
 
CPH-R
Posts: 6165
Joined: Thu May 03, 2001 5:19 pm

RE: National Air & Space Museum (Washington D.C.)

Sun Aug 24, 2003 5:20 am

As far as I know, it's a part of the Smitsonian Institute & located right next to DCA. There's even a taxiway linking the museum to the airport, so that future exhibitions can arrive by air (like the AF Concorde did).

However, I'm under the impression that the museum is still under construction. Or am I way off?
 
starrion
Posts: 1023
Joined: Sat Jul 19, 2003 1:19 pm

RE: National Air & Space Museum (Washington D.C.)

Sun Aug 24, 2003 5:21 am

Worth the visit. They have a wide range of aircraft from different eras. The Air and Space museum is right in the heart of the Mall in Downtown Washington so you will want to visit. If your visit isn't until December, you will be able to include the Annex at Dulles airport itself.

The annex has the Shuttle Enterprise, The B29 Enola Gay, the Boeing 307 and a variety of other notable aircraft.
Knowledge Replaces Fear
 
AMS
Posts: 1621
Joined: Thu Aug 14, 2003 7:34 am

RE: National Air & Space Museum (Washington D.C.)

Sun Aug 24, 2003 5:24 am

Patrick,

I have lived and worked myself before at IAD
IAD is in the state of Virginia and about 50KM away from the smisonian air and space museum.

I would advise you to take a coach, wich operates frequently between IAD and Washington DC.

You can find many interresting things in the air and space museum, like you can touch a stone from the moon and the aircraft of Lindberg hangs in the museum!

Although it has been 7 years ago when I lived in Virginia, maybe some things have changed, and also I did not see much commercial aviation in the smithsonian.

I also recommend to spot at DCA! it is a nice tiny airport with a great vieuw of the washington monuments!

regards,
AMS
 
JAL777
Posts: 2453
Joined: Wed Jun 04, 2003 10:13 pm

RE: National Air & Space Museum (Washington D.C.)

Sun Aug 24, 2003 5:25 am

Its a great museum, part of the Smithsonian.

The one in downtown Washington however is "small." The museum has a very large and substantial collection that will finally get the home it deserves at the Udvar Hazy Center at Washington, Dulles which is scheduled to open this December. Up until then, the aircraft (SR71, Enola Gay, 1st Space Shuttle, etc.,) had to be kept in storage and out of the public eye. I'm not sure if you can visit the Dulles center yet. Plus, its free!  Smile

http://www.nasm.edu



[Edited 2003-08-23 22:27:48]
 
starrion
Posts: 1023
Joined: Sat Jul 19, 2003 1:19 pm

RE: National Air & Space Museum (Washington D.C.)

Sun Aug 24, 2003 5:28 am

Sorry CPH-R, a bit off.

The main museum is near DCA but it is across the river. No connection between the two. The Annex at Dulles has the connection taxiway for flyable aircraft. The main museum is in downtown which is a bit of a ride from Dulles. The annex is still under construction, the main museum has been open for many years. The annex will open in December.

Knowledge Replaces Fear
 
gocaps16
Posts: 4138
Joined: Sat Jan 29, 2000 9:14 am

RE: National Air & Space Museum (Washington D.C.)

Sun Aug 24, 2003 5:29 am

The Air & Space Museam is located in downtown Washington DC in Smithsonian. Just take the metrorail to Smithsonian (Blue line) and it's a 5 minute walk from the station. Worth a visit if you're from out of town. The one in Dulles isnt completed yet. It will be open in December 2003 so you're a few months early.
From Dulles to downtown DC, its about a 40 minute drive depending on how the traffic is. Traffic can be a big mess on weekdays.

"As far as I know, it's a part of the Smitsonian Institute & located right next to DCA."

CPH-R, I beleive you meant IAD, not DCA. I don't recall seeing a taxiway from DCA to the Air & Space museam.  Wow!

Kevin

 
User avatar
Aaron747
Posts: 11914
Joined: Thu Aug 07, 2003 2:07 am

RE: National Air & Space Museum (Washington D.C.)

Sun Aug 24, 2003 5:30 am

Correction:

There is no taxiway linking DCA with the National Mall and/or museum. CPH was referring to the new permanent exhibition opening in December at Dulles Airport.

National Air & Space is a great museum, though some of the displays are a bit dated. The Apollo exhibit is excellent and it's really something to see the X-15, Chuck Yeager's X-1 and Wright Flyer suspended from the ceiling when you walk in. Give yourself a minimum three hour visit to fully enjoy the museum. Contrary to what some tourist guides will tell you, National Air & Space is a pretty good walk on the Mall from the Smithsonian Metro Station.

If you board at the end of the blue/orange line in Fairfax, VA (nearest station to Dulles), you will stay on the same train all the way to the L'Enfant Plaza or Federal Center SW stations. These stations are closer to the museum than the Smithsonian stop. If you walk from L'Enfant Plaza, you'll even pass the FAA's building along the way.

If you need someone to blame / throw a rock in the air / you'll hit someone guilty
 
Sabena332
Topic Author
Posts: 14938
Joined: Wed May 09, 2001 3:57 am

RE: National Air & Space Museum (Washington D.C.)

Sun Aug 24, 2003 5:32 am

Wow, you guys are really fast! Thanks a lot for this excellent information and thanks for the website adress, it looks very interesting!

Patrick
NZ1's mother is a disgusting crack-whore and his father is a worthless alcoholic!
 
Trident
Posts: 477
Joined: Sun Feb 27, 2000 4:49 am

RE: National Air & Space Museum (Washington D.C.)

Sun Aug 24, 2003 8:24 am

If you have any interest AT ALL in aviation or space you will find the NASM in downtown Washington DC fantastic. I visited it many years ago (1984) and it was one of the highlights of my holiday. The aircraft and space vehicles on display are truely historic -

The actual 1903 Wright Flyer
Lindergh's Spirit of St Louis
John Glenn's Mercury capsule "Friendship 7"
The actual Apollo 11 Command Module "Columbia"
Chuck Yeager's Bell X-1 "Glamorous Glennis"
and many more.

When I was there the main airliners on display was an original pre-war Douglas DC-3 in Eastern colours and a Boeing 247. There was also an ex FedEx Dassult Falcon biz jet on display but I wouldn't expect that to be there now.

 
L1011
Posts: 2153
Joined: Tue May 18, 1999 8:02 am

RE: National Air & Space Museum (Washington D.C.)

Sun Aug 24, 2003 3:10 pm

They have the front section of an American Airlines DC-7. Too bad they don't have the whole plane. I was on it in July and I noticed that the passenger seats have been removed. I don't know whether that's permanent or they have just been removed for refurbishing. They were there several years ago when I visited the museum. Also, the Eastern DC-3 is awesome.

Bob Bradley
Richmond, VA
Fly Eastern's Golden Falcon DC-7B
 
Dalmd88
Posts: 3131
Joined: Fri Jul 28, 2000 3:19 am

RE: National Air & Space Museum (Washington D.C.)

Sun Aug 24, 2003 8:54 pm

I agree with Trident. The museum has many great historic aircraft on display. Nowhere else can you see some of the stuff they have. One thing I found interesting, while standing under the Wright Flyer many people think it and the Spirit of St. Louis are copies. Sad that in today's simulated world people expect things to be fake copies.

Back in 1990 I was moving from college, ERAU in Daytona Beach to Syracuse so I made a point to stop off in DC to see the Restoration Facility that is now being moved to IAD. It that time it was in Suitland, MD. Tours were limited by appointment. That place was a aviation nuts dream. They took us through the shop where the aircraft are restored and then through two of the warehouses. Planes were stuffed everywhere. I doubt they offer tours of this facility anymore since many of the items are being moved to IAD.
 
ba319-131
Posts: 8310
Joined: Sat Jan 13, 2001 1:27 pm

RE: National Air & Space Museum (Washington D.C.)

Sun Aug 24, 2003 9:13 pm

I sure look forward to the new facility opening at IAD,might have to take a trip just for the new museum.
111 732 733 734 735 736 73G 738 739,7M8 BBJ 741 742 743 744 752 753 762 763 764 772 77L 773 77W L15 D10 D30 D40 AB3 AB6 312 313 318 319 320 20N 321 21N 332 333 342 343 345 346 359 351 388 CS1 CS3 I86 154 SSJ CRJ CR7 CR9 CRK 145 170 175 220
 
Ikarus
Posts: 3399
Joined: Mon Jan 08, 2001 10:18 pm

RE: National Air & Space Museum (Washington D.C.)

Sun Aug 24, 2003 9:59 pm

Until the facility at the airport opens, it's not really great. It may be free, but that means it's crowded. And for an airliner enthusiast, seeing some balsa wood planes isn't all that exciting. The London Science Museum is more interesting than the National Air & Space museum in Washington, which apparently is the most visited tourist attraction in the world.

Have a look inside. But I wouldn't bother with it a second time, not until the new annex opens at the airport.

Regards

Ikarus
 
OE-LDA
Posts: 207
Joined: Thu Sep 28, 2000 5:29 pm

RE: National Air & Space Museum (Washington D.C.)

Sun Aug 24, 2003 11:01 pm

If you are only remotely interested in things that fly, the National air and space museum is THE place to go. If you are an enthusiast, which I guess most of us are, it is simply heaven. I have been there more than once, with tears in my eyes (really).

Regards, OE-LDA
I am totally missing basics and clueless about airline flying!
 
Sabena332
Topic Author
Posts: 14938
Joined: Wed May 09, 2001 3:57 am

RE: National Air & Space Museum (Washington D.C.)

Sun Aug 24, 2003 11:19 pm

Thanks again for your information guys, I will definitely visit the museum next week.

Patrick
NZ1's mother is a disgusting crack-whore and his father is a worthless alcoholic!
 
StevenUhl777
Posts: 3281
Joined: Sun Jul 08, 2001 11:02 am

RE: National Air & Space Museum (Washington D.C.)

Sun Aug 24, 2003 11:39 pm

I saw this complex on finals to 1R at IAD yesterday, on the way home from BOS. Also, the AF Concorde, constellation, navy fighter, and the 207 is at IAD and ready for the museum.

Thanks for the update on the opening...since I'm flying through IAD next July, I can now take the redeye from SEA, spend the day at the new museum, and fly out that night to LHR. Appreciate it! My vacation next July is off to a great start already!
And the winner for best actress is....REESE WITHERSPOON for 'Walk the Line'!!!!!!!!
 
Trident
Posts: 477
Joined: Sun Feb 27, 2000 4:49 am

RE: National Air & Space Museum (Washington D.C.)

Mon Aug 25, 2003 12:06 am

I certainly wouldn't place the London Science Museaum ahead of the NASM. They are both great. The Science Museum's Airliner Collection is at Wroughton in Wiltshire and is very good.
 
Dulles
Posts: 63
Joined: Fri Jul 04, 2003 11:04 am

RE: National Air & Space Museum (Washington D.C.)

Mon Aug 25, 2003 9:32 am

The closest metro station to the museum is L'Enfant Plaza, although Smithsonian is a close next. The museum is open daily till 6 pm and, like all Smithsonian museums, it is free (I do not have time to dwell upon the history of that). Do not even dream of parking nearby on a weekday and, at this time of year, on a weekend, either. You may be lucky to catch a free parking spot on the mall, but the probability of that is extremely small, and there is a 3-h limit, which is not enough for such a museum (DC makes a lot of money with parking tickets). I would also recommend to visit the IMAX theater inside the museum, but: (i) the ticket should be bought well in advance; (ii) you should be at the (closed) door of the theater at least half an hour before the movie start in order to get a good seat (in the middle of a row, a little closer to the bottom than to the top).

Dulles
 
User avatar
United_fan
Posts: 6691
Joined: Fri Nov 24, 2000 11:11 am

RE: National Air & Space Museum (Washington D.C.)

Mon Aug 25, 2003 10:19 am

Any idea when the Dash 80 will arrive ??
"Suspicion is a matter of opinion"
 
IMissPiedmont
Posts: 6199
Joined: Wed May 23, 2001 12:58 pm

RE: National Air & Space Museum (Washington D.C.)

Mon Aug 25, 2003 10:57 am

As much as I love the NASM I hate to admit it's not the first of the Smithsonian museums I'd visit given one day. Of course I've been there several times so a grain of salt is in order.

One day, not likely to return and love aircraft, Yea, I'd say stop one is the NASM on the mall.

But, damn, the Smithsonian is so great otherwise.. I could spend a month amongst the museums and not get bored.

DC chamber of commerce plug over.
The day you stop learning is the day you should die.

Popular Searches On Airliners.net

Top Photos of Last:   24 Hours  •  48 Hours  •  7 Days  •  30 Days  •  180 Days  •  365 Days  •  All Time

Military Aircraft Every type from fighters to helicopters from air forces around the globe

Classic Airliners Props and jets from the good old days

Flight Decks Views from inside the cockpit

Aircraft Cabins Passenger cabin shots showing seat arrangements as well as cargo aircraft interior

Cargo Aircraft Pictures of great freighter aircraft

Government Aircraft Aircraft flying government officials

Helicopters Our large helicopter section. Both military and civil versions

Blimps / Airships Everything from the Goodyear blimp to the Zeppelin

Night Photos Beautiful shots taken while the sun is below the horizon

Accidents Accident, incident and crash related photos

Air to Air Photos taken by airborne photographers of airborne aircraft

Special Paint Schemes Aircraft painted in beautiful and original liveries

Airport Overviews Airport overviews from the air or ground

Tails and Winglets Tail and Winglet closeups with beautiful airline logos