The Museum of Flight near Seattle, is one of America's best aviation museums.
It's an easy drive 15 minutes south of Seattle at Boeing Field, and houses an amazing collection of 150 aircraft and spacecraft.
It takes about 3 or 4 hours to see everything.
Step onboard the first Air Force One, sit in the cockpit of the world's fastest plane, and train on the same flight simulator that astronauts used for Space Shuttle missions.
There's also an incredible collection of WWI and II fighter planes, and a stunning Great Hall with both military and commercial planes from all eras.
The Museum of Flight is at 9404 East Marginal Way S, Seattle, 98108.
Check admission & ticket prices. Parking is free.
10 best things to do at Museum of Flight
1. Visit the Great Hall to see the fastest plane in the world.
The Lockheed M-21 Blackbird built in 1963, is still the fastest aircraft ever built in the world. The CIA utilized it to launch drones over enemy territories, for information gathering.
This is another perspective of the Lockheed M-21 Blackbird.
2. See World War I and II fighter planes involved in aerial dog fights over Europe.
The Curtiss P-40N Warhawk is a WWII fighter aircraft, first launched in 1939. It was named after a popular army drinking name, "O'Riley's Daughter".
The Messerschmitt BF 109E-3 is German WWII fighter at the Museum of Flight. Nearly 34,000 of these were built, and it was one of the Luftwaffe's most popular planes.
The Red Baron's plane is a German WWI fighter. The most famous German fighter pilot was Manfred von Richthofen, otherwise known as the Red Baron. He shot down 80 planes in the new era of aerial dogfights.
Sopwith Camel F1 Reproduction is a WWI fighter from the UK at the Museum of Flight.
Fokker D.VIII Reproduction is a German WWII fighter.
Albatros D.Va (L24) Reproduction is German WWI fighter.
3. Follow in the footsteps of Presidents by exploring Air Force One.
The Boeing 707-120 was the first ever presidential jet. It was used by Presidents Eisenhower, Kennedy, Johnson and Nixon, from 1958 to 1962. Other staff members utilized it up until 1996, including Vice Presidents.
The safe contained the nuclear codes inside a briefcase, for a strike.
This is the Communication Station on Air Force One at the Museum of Flight. It enabled the President to contact the White House Situation Room, and National Military Command Center.
This is the Presidential Stateroom and Conference Room. Look at the old rotary phone.
4. Climb in the cockpit of a super cool SR-71 Blackbird or F/A-18 Hornet, at the Museum of Flight.
The Lockheed SR-71 Blackbird was introduced in 1961 by the US Airforce, as a Cold War spy plane to photograph enemy territory. It travels at 3 times the speed of light, and is still the fastest plane in the world. Step inside the cockpit and play with its controls.
5. See Apollo 17 Mission Models from the 1960s.
The Apollo Command Module 007A was built in 1965, and was used by Apollo crews to test post-landing splashdown in the ocean. Two crews sat inside the module for 48 hours at a time, to test it in the Gulf of Mexico.
This is a temporary display of Apollo 10 astronaut John Young's spacesuit, adjacent to a Lunar Roving vehicle built in 1971. Lunar rovers could send satellite images back to Earth, and were utilized on Apollo missions in 1971 to 1972.
6. Catch a show at the 3D Movie Theater.
Watch short movies about aviation and space travel in this state-of-the-art theater, at the Museum of Flight.
7. Step in a Flight Simulator, and pilot an Apollo Lunar Lander or Space Shuttle.
The Museum of Flight has the same flight simulator that NASA astronauts once used for training on the Shuttle.
8. Visit the fun Kid's Flight Zone.
There's so much to do in the Kid's Flight Zone at the Museum of Flight, including hang gliding simulators, an aircraft instrumentation area, and aerodynamic experiments with a wind machine. Operate the controls of a Rotorway Scorpion helicopter.
9. Learn about the birthplace of Boeing.
Learn about William Boeing's incredible story at the Museum of Flight. Step inside his original Red Barn from 1909, the birthplace of Boeing, where aircraft where manufactured.
10. Listen to live conversations at the Air Traffic Control Tower.
Listen to live radio transmissions between pilots, from the Air Traffic Control Tower.
Know before you go
- Museum of Flight address: 9404 East Marginal Way S, Seattle, 98108.
- Tickets: Check ticket prices.
- Cafe: yes.
- Parking: free.
Fun things to do near the Museum of Flight
If you enjoy the Museum of Flight, you should also plan a visit to the Boeing Factory Tour 40 minutes north in Everett.
If you're looking for something to do closer to the Museum of Flight, visit the stunning Kubota Garden, just 7 minutes drive away.