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Smithsonian Institution

Journey into the past, present and future

From history and science to art and culture, the Smithsonian Institution invites you to uncover the most intriguing parts of our planet at 19 museums, galleries, gardens and a zoo. Admission is free at all their locations, making it a treasure chest for visitors to Washington D.C.

Here they are in Alphabetical order:

National Museum of African American History and Culture

Delve into a variety of topics including African American art, athletics, slavery, the Civil Rights Movement, and more in the only national museum dedicated to all aspects of African American life.

National Museum of African Art

Home to approximately 12,000 traditional and contemporary art pieces from Africa including the renowned Walt Disney-Tishman African Art Collection.

National Air and Space Museum

Aspiring pilots and astronauts will get to see the famous 1903 Wright Flyer, touch a moon rock brought back from Apollo 17 and gaze at stars in the public observatory.

Air and Space Museum Udvar-Hazy Center

The Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center serves as a companion to the National Air and Space Museum. Inside, you’ll find the Lockheed SR-71 Blackbird, Discovery space shuttle and other iconic craft hanging from the ceiling.

American Art Museum

Explore the country’s artistic development by admiring three centuries worth of American art. See works by such artists as John Singleton Copley, Winslow Homer and Georgia O’Keeffe.

National Museum of American History

Interactive exhibits and over three million artifacts immerse you in all aspects of American history. Must-see items include George Washington’s uniform and Dorothy’s ruby slippers.

National Museum of the American Indian

With items and exhibits covering over 12,000 years of history and 1,200+ indigenous cultures, this museum brings Native stories to life and gives you valuable perspective into their lives.

Anacostia Community Museum

Learn about the evolution of urban life and examine topics like globalization, climate change, modernization, and African American culture through dynamic exhibitions.

Freer Gallery of Art

One of two museums showcasing Asian art. Galleries feature Chinese paintings, Islamic metalware, Indian sculpture, and Japanese lacquer dating from Neolithic times to the early 1900s.

Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden

Houses more than 12,000 pieces of contemporary art in a stunning cylindrical building and sunken sculpture garden. Outside, you’ll find works by Auguste Rodin, Henry Moor, and Yoko Ono.

National Zoo

Come face-to-face with giant pandas, tigers, giraffes, elephants, lions, and more in this 163-acre park.

National Museum of Natural History

Bigger than 18 football fields, this museum boasts the largest natural history collection in the world. Don’t miss Egyptian mummies, dinosaur fossils, and the Hope Diamond.

Portrait Gallery

Peer at paintings, photos, and sculptures of famous American presidents, actors, poets, and activists.

National Postal Museum

Discover the fascinating evolution of mail through stamp collections, postal artifacts and fascinating exhibits. You’ll also find the William H. Gross Stamp Gallery here, the largest on Earth.

Renwick Gallery

Part of the American Art Museum, this gallery highlights American craft and decorative art from the past few centuries.

S. Dillon Ripley Center

Stop by to see the Discovery Theater, Smithsonian Associates and Smithsonian Traveling Exhibition Service.

Arthur M. Sackler Gallery

Enjoy a wealth of Asian art including contemporary Japanese ceramics and ancient Chinese jades and bronzes. Lectures, concerts, and films elevate your experience.

Smithsonian Institution Building (The Castle)

Start your day at the Smithsonian Visitor Center, which is housed within the Castle. Here you can explore highlights from each museum and ask experts for recommendations.

Smithsonian Gardens

Described as a “museum without walls,” these gardens enhance your overall experience by complementing the museums they border. Weekly garden tours take place from mid-April to September.

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Smithsonian Institution

Destination D.C.