National Museum of African American History and Culture

National Museum of African American History and Culture

National Museum of African American History and Culture
5
10:00 AM - 5:30 PM
Monday
12:00 PM - 5:30 PM
Tuesday
10:00 AM - 5:30 PM
Wednesday
10:00 AM - 5:30 PM
Thursday
10:00 AM - 5:30 PM
Friday
10:00 AM - 5:30 PM
Saturday
10:00 AM - 5:30 PM
Sunday
10:00 AM - 5:30 PM
About
This 10-story Smithsonian Institution museum is dedicated to showcasing the African-American way of life, culture, and experiences through America's history.
Duration: 2-3 hours
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The area
Address
How to get there
  • Federal Triangle • 6 min walk
  • Smithsonian • 7 min walk
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See what travellers are saying
  • Thomas T
    5 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    A must see attraction when you are in Washingron DC
    This museum has been on my "bucket" list for many years. The pandemic delayed my trip, but this year, I made a special effort to secure tickets. From my initial entry into the museum, I knew this was going to be a special trip. I walked up to the information desk and asked the employee, "As a first timer, where do I begin?" She answered by saying, "The museum is decided into two main sections, History and Culture. Which are true most interested?" With a slight pause, I said,"Let's start with history." She showed me where to take the elevator 3 stories down at the start of the History section and work my way back up to the main level. Even though I visited at 2 pm on the 4th of July, the museum was not overly crowded. The exhibits were well documented and presented in a way to allow a person to take all the time they needed to absorb the content without feeling rushed or in the way. The most impactful display to me was the exhibit of the segregated railway car. To visually see the difference between the "colored" and "white" section allowed me to "experience" the shame a person felt during that time. Please take the time to schesule a visit to this museum. The tickets are released one month in advance. I would recommend setting aside 2, 3 hour days, at a minimum. You will not be disappointed.
    Visited July 2023
    Travelled with friends
    Written July 23, 2023
  • TravelNerd
    Tirana, Albania63 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Unique experience as a foreigner
    Each floor gave you interesting information about history, unlike any I've seen before. I took my time, didn't schedule much else for the day and I'd suggest it. It's a huge museum and don't want to miss any of the exhibitions.
    Visited February 2023
    Written July 27, 2023
  • Iponema
    Bronx, New York93 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    This museum is wonderful!
    This is my second time visiting this museum since b4 the Pandemic. I was able to view exhibits this time that l was not able to view the first time that l had visited. Great museum, great information about African American/Black culture & history throughout the years Wonderful museum to visit for all people to learn about African American/Black history.
    Visited July 2023
    Travelled with friends
    Written August 3, 2023
  • RoadTripperNYC
    69 contributions
    4.0 of 5 bubbles
    Amazing History
    The 3 hours I spent here was not enough! There is so much to take in, every word needs to be read and absorbed. What an amazing museum! I even overheard a couple white women say, “How can anyone deny this, there’s so much history right here?!” I wholeheartedly agree. Because there was so much, I felt like they crammed alot into the below space, and even with timed entry, it got pretty crowded. I was also not so happy with the cafe, which felt very ordinary with hot dogs and fried chicken and bbq. And they charged almost $5 for a bottle of water!!
    Visited August 2023
    Travelled solo
    Written August 12, 2023
  • EastCoastCanada
    234 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Great experience
    I didn’t know what to expect and almost didn’t go. Stayed for 4 hours. So glad I did and I learned so much. The way the visit was structured it was an experience : the museum visit and learning started in floors below ground and through gradually walking up ramps you ascended to street level and then could visit upper floors that more focused on celebrating accomplishments and achievements. One of the most well-planned museums I have visited. Great use of video footage and exhibits throughout to contribute to the overall experience.
    Visited August 2023
    Travelled solo
    Written August 14, 2023
  • ItchyFeet
    Camarillo, California10,906 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    6 floors - 2 days
    This museum is great to take you from pre slavery to current times. There are extensive exhibits that take a huge amount of time to read and or listen too. You can really only take about 3 hours of standing and reading plus the overwhelming info in one day. I was only able to walk through the history galleries and wish I had a lot more time. I was not aware of any guided tour and I stopped by the info desk when I entered the museum. Plan to go early and plan on maybe having lunch in the museum and then continuing on after lunch.
    Written August 30, 2023
  • Stay173387
    2 contributions
    5.0 of 5 bubbles
    Museum in Washington Dc
    We enjoyed a day at the museum,the first time the museum were closed down early due to weather warnings.We were allowed to return at a different date. I recommend 2 days to see every thing.We had lunch it was ok,not best soul food,but ok a snack. The museum share a history to all.
    Visited August 2023
    Travelled with family
    Written September 2, 2023
These reviews are the subjective opinion of Tripadvisor members and not of TripAdvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Most Recent: Reviews ordered by most recent publish date in descending order.

Detailed Reviews: Reviews ordered by recency and descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as waiting time, length of visit, general tips, and location information.

Popular mentions

5.0
5.0 of 5 bubbles3,747 reviews
Excellent
3,154
Very good
408
Average
100
Poor
31
Terrible
54

Rosebud39631
Ponchatoula, LA70 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Feb 2020
This wonderful museum shares the history in a great way. Be prepared to walk though. There are three large floors under the ground that we didn't expect. You can get tickets on line to avoid the wait, and there is a locker to store your possessions while you tour. . The restaurant is an amazing, great priced, home cooked meal venue, even if you don't have time to tour the museum. The history of the athletes and musicians is great too.
Written February 12, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Dear Rosebud39631, Thank you for visiting the National Museum of African American History and Culture and providing your feedback. We appreciate your enthusiasm for the museum, and we thank you for your comment on your visit. We hope you plan to return! Thank you for visiting and submitting a review. Sincerely, Visitor Services National Museum of African American History and Culture
Written March 20, 2020
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Nelson T
Mandeville, LA556 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Oct 2019
A great addition to the museums on the Mall. Allow lots of time and schedule your trip at other than a peak time. It can get very crowded. You will need a timed ticket booked in advance at certain times of the year. In early October we walked right in. Just a short line at security. The lower level floors are the historical floors. They cover everything from the beginning of the slave trade to the present day. Very powerful. Spend the time to take it all in. The upper floors are dedicated to African American culture. We particularly enjoyed the music and sports exhibits. There is a meditation room off to the side at the beginning of the lower levels with a fountain. Easy to overlook, but don't miss it. The Sweet Home self service cafe was handy and good, but a bit overpriced which is typical of most museum cafes in Washington.
Written January 3, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Dear Nelson T, Thank you for visiting the National Museum of African American History and Culture and providing your feedback. We appreciate your enthusiasm for the museum, and we thank you for providing your personal experience and tips for visiting the museum. We hope you plan to return! Thank you for visiting and submitting a review. Sincerely, Visitor and Guest Services National Museum of African American History and Culture
Written March 24, 2020
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Khai L
Austin, TX628 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jan 2020
This museum is usually difficult to get admission tickets, so the trick is to come during winter time. All you need to do is to walk-in. The earlier you arrive, the sooner you will get in.

This museum is informative and tells the history, the struggles, and the success of African Americans. A must see! The cool part is that the exhibition is underground.
Written January 31, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Dear KhaiLe1989, Thank you for visiting the National Museum of African American History and Culture and providing your feedback. We appreciate your enthusiasm for the museum, and we thank you for providing your personal experience and tips for visiting the museum. We hope you plan to return! Thank you for visiting and submitting a review. Sincerely, Visitor Services National Museum of African American History and Culture
Written March 20, 2020
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

WHMeg
Willoughby Hills, OH490 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Feb 2020 • Friends
Make sure you check the website to determine if you do or don’t need passes. If you don’t, you still will want to arrive before opening time in order to get in line to be admitted! If the weather is cold, make sure you wear enough outerwear to stay warm, but be aware that there is not a coat check but there are lockers in which you can place items. This is a museum for everyone... don’t pass it by because you don’t have African ancestry. Take your time viewing the exhibits (there are some interactive exhibits which are just as informative as some of the other displays). We spent an entire day at the museum and still didn’t have enough time to thoroughly peruse all of the exhibit areas. You may want to split your visit into two days, concentrating on the history areas one day and the other thematic exhibits the next. If you have many food intolerances or allergies, you won’t find much to eat in the cafe, although the offerings are quite tasty according to the other people with whom I visited the museum. You can not bring in outside food, so that may also determine your visiting schedule. Do make time to visit the extensive museum shop. I participate in an international postcard exchange and this museum store had the most postcards of any DC museum I’ve visited.
Written February 16, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Dear WHMeg, Thank you for visiting the National Museum of African American History and Culture and providing your feedback. We appreciate your enthusiasm for the museum, and we thank you for providing your personal experience and tips for visiting the museum. We hope you plan to return! Thank you for visiting and submitting a review. Sincerely, Visitor Services National Museum of African American History and Culture
Written March 19, 2020
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Victoire Brillard
Bergues, France3 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
May 2019 • Solo
I highly recommend the NMAAH because as far as I’m concerned it's a beautiful place where you can better understand the full history of the United States. Furthermore it’s a place where you can go as a family, indeed I've seen a lot of grandparents tell their grandchildren their history and what they've been through. Everybody should visit this museum, it gives a breath of optimism, it makes you want to fight for your ideals because there are still too many issues that divide us. If you're going to Washington DC you must go there ! In addition you can see the White House and the US Capitol from the Museum. And I think it's really fantastic. It was a great experience and a very nice day but nonetheless there was a long line and a lot of people.
Written April 24, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Dear victorie_blld, Thank you for visiting the National Museum of African American History and Culture and providing your feedback. We appreciate your enthusiasm for the museum and passion for African American history. We thank you for sharing your personal experience visiting the museum and hope you plan to return! Thank you for visiting and submitting a review. Sincerely, Visitor and Guest Services National Museum of African American History and Culture
Written February 3, 2021
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

genmasjoy
West Palm Beach, FL160 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Aug 2021
I spent more than four hours at the museum. It is very impressive because it details African American History from its beginnings up through the modern era. The information is well presented through narration, objects, videos, photos, and art. It is comprehensive and fascinating. At the present time, visitors must reserve a timed ticket in advance. I highly recommend it.
Written August 17, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Dear genmasjoy, I spent more than four hours at the museum. It is very impressive because it details African American History from its beginnings up through the modern era. The information is well presented through narration, objects, videos, photos, and art. It is comprehensive and fascinating. At the present time, visitors must reserve a timed ticket in advance. I highly recommend it.
Written August 26, 2021
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Kathy C
Los Angeles, CA103 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Oct 2020
This museum remains so popular that in ordinary times you need to reserve admission several MONTHS in advance. Now you can reserve up to 30 days out and you need to go online and reserve admission in the morning 30 days out in order to be sure you can get in. It has an incredible collection of artifacts that bring you into the culture of accomplished African Americans and gives you remarkable insight into their lives outside of the activities that brought them fame.
Written November 3, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Dear Kathy C, Thank you for visiting the National Museum of African American History and Culture and providing your feedback. We appreciate your enthusiasm for the museum and passion for African American history. We thank you for sharing your personal experience visiting the museum and hope you plan to return! Thank you for visiting and submitting a review. Sincerely, Visitor and Guest Services National Museum of African American History and Culture
Written February 3, 2021
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Sham Nashell
2 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Apr 2019 • Friends
We were lucky enough to snag our tickets months in advance. This was such an amazing experience and I would recommend everyone come to the National African American Museum when they are visiting DC. It was impossible to see everything in one visit but we made a decent dent. We will see the remaining floors the next time we visit.
Written February 11, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Dear ShamNashell, Thank you for visiting the National Museum of African American History and Culture and providing your feedback. We appreciate your enthusiasm for the museum, and we thank you for your comment on your visit. We hope you plan to return! Thank you for visiting and submitting a review. Sincerely, Visitor Services National Museum of African American History and Culture
Written March 20, 2020
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

J D
Sterling, VA153 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Mar 2020
This is a museum that has been hard to get into, since the volume of visitors has been steady and heavy since its opening. It's near the Smithsonian metro stop, so that is probably the best way to visit this place. Parking in D.C. is almost non-existent. It's wrapped in a metal sheathing and is impressive to look at. Timed tickets must be obtained for a good part of the year. There are food trucks outside and a really great cafe inside. This museum has 6 floors and the concourse where visitors enter. It also has plenty of restrooms and a very good gift shop. The front desk docents provide maps and guidance on how to see so much African American history in an organized way. There are ramps, elevators, and escalators to move visitors from floor to floor. The lower 3 show exhibits and history from the earliest time. The top 3 floors exhibit more modern history, ending with President Obama's tenure. It was a wonderful experience and I will go back to see the entire collection of items and stories again. I highly recommend this wonderful addition to the Smithsonian buildings.
Written March 4, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Dear J D, Thank you for visiting the National Museum of African American History and Culture and providing your feedback. We appreciate your enthusiasm for the museum, and we thank you for providing your personal experience and tips for visiting the museum. We hope you plan to return! Thank you for visiting and submitting a review. Sincerely, Visitor Services National Museum of African American History and Culture
Written March 18, 2020
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

Curators2
Utica, NY75 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Dec 2019
I am a museum director and have seen many museums over the years, but this one is really one of the best I've seen. The museum tells the complex story of Africans in America in such a coherent and sensitive way, with a strong individual, human component, that I found myself enthralled for several hours. It's a big museum, with several floors, so set aside at least half a day to see it properly. Make sure you make it to the fourth floor where there is a major installation on African American arts and culture, including music. And take a moment to appreciate the unique building as well. There is a small exhibition about the architecture on the bottom floor, where the history exhibitions are. The shop and cafe are also worth checking out. Super friendly staff too!
Written January 8, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Dear Curators2, Thank you for visiting the National Museum of African American History and Culture and providing your feedback. We appreciate your enthusiasm for the museum, and we thank you for providing your personal experience and tips for visiting the museum. We hope you plan to return! Thank you for visiting and submitting a review. Sincerely, Visitor Services National Museum of African American History and Culture
Written March 20, 2020
This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of Tripadvisor LLC.

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National Museum of African American History and Culture - All You Need to Know BEFORE You Go (2024)

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