- Titan Missile Museum – Green Valley, AZ: best of the best – they focus on one topic and do it extremely well. The one and only place you can see a retired Titan Missile literally sitting in it’s underground launch silo. Great tour too!
2. Pima Air & Space Museum – Tucson, AZ: the best general air and space museum in the country where you can get up close to the aircraft and take your time.
3. Kennedy Space Center – Cape Canaveral, FL: awe-inspiring and vast. Be sure to try time your visit to see a launch.
4. National Air & Space Museum – Washington, DC: while glorious, it is too often crowded and chaotic to make the experience as worthwhile as it could or should be.
5. International Balloon Museum – Albuquerque, NM: impressive presentations on famous balloons and similar lighter-than-aircraft at the site of the International Balloon Fiesta held in early October. Enjoyed the interactive exhibits and the history of ballooning. Could use more information and displays on blimps and dirigibles. – Added on 10/25/21
6. White Sands Missile Range Museum – White Sands, NM: the museum portion could use some improvements, but the display of missiles is outstanding. Combine this with the nearby Space Mural and Museum (see below) and it would be closer to the top of the list.
7. Prairie Aviation Museum – Bloomington, IL: very pleasant regional air museum. When we visited it in 2006 they had a vintage 1942 Ozark Airlines DC-3. Unfortunately, the plane was sold in 2009 to a restoration firm.
8. Space Murals and Museum – Las Cruces (Organ), NM: a delightful undiscovered treasure trove of aerospace information that has no admission charge. Located right along US 70. Only suggestion would be to revise the name to better represent the rich amount of information here or combine this with the White Sands Missile Range Museum.
9. Mid-Atlantic Air Museum – Reading, PA: nice regional air museum.
10. Planes of Fame Air Museum – Valle, AZ: worth a stop on the way to or from the South Rim of Grand Canyon National Park.
11. International Space Hall of Fame/New Mexico Museum of Space History – Alamogordo, NM: too oriented towards school field trips, though when we visited in early 2020, there was a terrific Star Trek exhibition. Also interesting to see the burial site HAM the Space Chimp. FYI – this complex is closed on Tuesdays.