NASA Visitor Centers to Visit across U.S.
To learn more about NASA, head to one of its visitor centers across the U.S. See everything from Apollo capsules to space suits to retired Space Shuttle orbiters. Some visitor centers offers viewing platforms for launches.
Space Center Houston
As an official NASA visitor center of NASA, it’s also home to the Johnson Space Center. Named after Lyndon B. Johnson who championed the human space flight and the Mission to the Moon in the 1960s.
This is where Mission Control is located for NASA launches and see the original 1969 Apollo Mission Control. The majority of Astronaut training occurs at the Johnson Space Center and it’s also responsible for development of human space flight.
In a sprawling complex that requires a tram ride to see all the attractions. The standout exhibit is the original shuttle carrier, NASA 905 with a full-scale orbiter replica mounted on top.It’s a converted Boeing 747 used to transport the Space Shuttle Orbiters.
Located at 1601 NASA Parkway. Open Monday to Friday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., Saturday and Sunday from 10 a.m. tp 6 p.m. Adult admission is $29.95 and kids (3 to 12) are $24.95.
Kennedy Space Center, Cape Canaveral Florida
One of the official NASA visitor centers and the Mothership of NASA. It was named after John F. Kennedy who launched the 1960s space race. It’s also close to one of the launch facilities, Cape Canaveral.
If you’re visiting just one NASA visitor centers, this is the one. As a bonus, it’s a few hours away from Orlando.
First up, see the retired Space Shuttle Orbiter Atlantis. Walk through the Rocket Garden to see a visual history of the evolution of the rocket. Another must is the U.S. Astronaut Hall of Fame.
Also board the tour buses for the working Kennedy Space Center’s Spaceflight Center, including a look at the Apollo/Saturn V Center. And the upcoming, Mission to Mars with live shows and interactive exhibits.
Note: Visitors can see the launches from here. For an up-close view, an additional ticket is required.
Located at Space Commerce Way. Open every day from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. and 6 p.m. during school breaks. Adult admission is $75, and kids 3 to 11 are $65, this includes the bus tour and IMAX film.
U.S. Space and Rocket Center Huntsville Alabama
The U.S. Space and Rocket Center features a sprawling complex with largest collection of rockets and space memorabilia in the world. A day’s worth of discovery and learning awaits along with an IMAX theater and glimpse into Space Camp.
As a Smithsonian affiliate and the Official Visitor Center of NASA’s Marshal Space Flight Center, the U.S. Space and Rocket Center features a rocket park with that grew into the NASA program. Find the Space Shuttle Pathfinder, a test simulator along with one of the original Saturn V rockets.
This location is also home to Space Camp, a specialized camp for kids, educators and adults. Participants work through a mock Astronaut program.
Located at One Tranquility Base. Open 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. every day. Adult admission is $30 and $20 for kids (5 to 12) and 4 and younger entering for free.
Virginia Air and Space Center
Visit the official NASA Visitor Center of Langley Research Center. It’s the birthplace of America’s space program.
Learn about 100 years of flight and see 30 historic aircraft. Don’t miss the Apollo 12 Command Module that landed on the Moon. Find an IMAX theatre as well.
Located at 600 Settlers Landing Rd, Hamilton, Virginia. Open Wednesday to Saturday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Sunday from noon to 5 p.m. and closed Monday and Tuesday. Adult admission is $22.50 and kids (3 to 18) are $19.
NASA Goddard Visitor Center Maryland
This facility focuses on Earth Science so learn how NASA explores Earth from Space.
Learn about the James Webb telescope built at Goddard Space Flight Center. Then learn about Hubbard Space Telescope that’s been in orbit for 25 years.
Launched in 2009, learn about the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter and its mission to map the moon’s surface. Looking for ice, or water, and suitable places to land on the Moon, the LRO’s mission continues.
Don’t miss a walk through Goddard’s Rocket Garden and the Astrobiology Walk.
Located next to Goddard Space Flight Center on ICESat Rd., it’s free to visit. Open Tuesday through Friday from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., Saturday and Sunday from noon to 4 p.m. It stays open until 5 p.m. during the week in July and August.
INFINITY Space Center Mississippi
It’s the official NASA visitor center for NASA Stennis Space Center. Learn about the evolution of the NASA space program starting with the Gemini Project to the Apollo Program and continuing to the ISS, or International Space Station. Also learn about the future of NASA with the latest on the SLS, Space Launch System. It will get humans to Mars.
See the Apollo 19 Saturn V first stage booster, from the cancelled Apollo program. Also find the Apollo 4 command module.
Located at 1 Discovery Circle in Pearlington, Mississippi, in southeast Mississippi. Open Thursday to Sunday from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Adult admission (14+) is $15 and kids (4 to 13) are $10.
NASA Wallops Flight Facility Visitor Center Virginia
This facility explains the role of orbital and sub-orbital rockets and scientific balloons. It’s also a launch facility for sub-orbital missions.
Located at Building J20, Route 175 on Wallops Island. It’s free to visit. Open Tuesday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
NASA Glenn Visitor Center Ohio
Located inside the Great Lakes Science Center in Cleveland learn about living in space at the International Space Station. Then see the Skylab 3 Apollo Command Module.
Located at 601 Erieside Avenue. Open Tuesday through Saturday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Sunday from noon to 5 p.m. Adult admission to the Great Lakes Science Center is $19.95, students with ID $18.95 and kids (2 to 12) $14.95.
Other NASA Sites
The Jet Propulsion Laboratory offers tours for groups or individuals with advance notice. See a movie then take a tour of the Karman Visitor Center, Space Flight Operations Facility, Earth Science Center and the Spacecraft Assembly Facility.
Located at 4800 Oak Grove Dr. in Pasadena, California. All visitors 18 and over must present a valid driver’s license or passport. All non-U.S. visitors must present a passport or resident visa card.
The Neil A. Armstrong Flight Research Center in Edwards, California, is listed as an official NASA visitor center. Though it doesn’t not support public tours on a regular basis.