Celebrate the First Moon Landing with These Fun Space Tourism Spots
The Apollo to the Moon exhibition at the Smithsonian. (Photo: Getty Images)
On July 20, 1969, Neil Armstrong made history by being the first person to set foot on the moon. On the 45th anniversary of the event, while we wait for Virgin Galactic to start offering commercial flights, lunar enthusiasts can celebrate the anniversary and satisfy their inner astronaut at these earthbound space-related attractions.
Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum
Home to the world’s greatest collection of all things related to flight, you could spend days wandering the galleries. But on this anniversary, go straight to the Apollo to the Moon exhibition, which displays hundreds of actual items used in the moon launches, everything from the actual Command Module that the astronauts rode back to Earth to their space suits, toothbrushes, and even their “urine accumulator bag.” For a modern twist, follow the Smithsonian-run Apollo 11 twitter feed to track the crew’s 1969 journey to the moon as if it were being live-tweeted today.
(Photo: Corbis Images)
U.S. Space & Rocket Center
Unknown to many, this Alabama town was the birthplace of the U.S. rocket program, with ex-Nazi Wernher von Braun and his team using their V-2 know-how to design the Saturn V rockets that sent the Apollo 11 team to the moon. Nowadays the museum on the grounds of the missile development center houses hundreds of artifacts from the space programs as well as a Space Camp, in which kids ages 9-18 spend nearly a week training to be junior astronauts, participating in mission simulations, firing model rockets, and conducting low-gravity experiments. Caution, math is involved.
(Photo: David Jones/Flickr)