Museum of Flying, Santa Monica

Originally founded in 1974 by Donald Douglas Jr. as the Douglas Museum and Library located on the South side of the Santa Monica Airport, the Museum migrated to the North side of the Airport and reopened as the Museum of Flying in April of 1989. The Museum gradually grew to a collection of over 50 vintage aircraft with many still in flight ready condition.

The anchor aircraft for the Museum was the Douglas World Cruiser, "New Orleans" which made the first circumnavigation of the globe along with its sister ship, "Chicago", in 1924. The Chicago now sits at the Smithsonian Institution's National Air & Space Museum. The museum's collection of artifacts, exhibits, and aviation art chronicle the development of aviation in Southern California.

Over the next several year's the museum played host to many historic and memorable special events and activities, including "A Walk on the Moon" in 1999 in which 7 NASA lunar astronauts were present and honored for their advancement in the discovery of space and the moon. In 2000, the museum held the 60th Commemorative Anniversary of the Battle of Britain. Attendees at this event witnessed first-hand accounts of this epic air battle, live and in person from several RAF and Luftwaffe pilots who joined us for this milestone occasion.

The Museum was forced to temporarily close in July of 2002 due to economic challenges. Since that time, Museum officials have been in discussion with the City of Santa Monica on a suitable new location at the Santa Monica Airport. Recently, the Museum executed a lease agreement with the City of Santa Monica for the leasehold at 3100 Airport Avenue. The new Museum expansion and remodeling project is estimated to cost nearly $2 million. Construction and the Capital Campaign to support it are in progress. Please support the construction effort by making a donation.
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Museum of Flying Reviews
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67 reviews
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4.5
TripAdvisor
  • We visited with our 3 grandkids. They have docents positioned around the museum to help explain the planes. There are a couple of cockpits they can climb into and pretend to fly the plane. They also h...  more »
  • Nice Museum, you'd expect to see more in reality is not great so I guess they could not put anything more in view of the topics in question, ingo bri but certainly interesting and worth seeing, the Council dimprendere one of those appliances that imparticolari, explain why something, at least in my case was different from what I remembered, or thought.
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  • My job had a meeting with 300 people at this museum. Everything was super organized, the displays were amazing.Although, the reason I'm giving 4 stars instead of 5 is because the airplanes that are outside that are a part of the show are way too dirty. If they were cleaner and shinier, it would tie the whole place together. Nevertheless, I left with a wonderful first impression of the place, and would definitely recommend it as a place to visit and explore.
  • Small flight museum. Aircraft collection is small and limited. However, the real gems are artifacts associated with the history of Douglas Aircraft Company. There you can see most of the models produced by the company, hear amazing stories about building a fake city to protect the factory and airport during WWII and see Executive Boardroom. However, the last one was closed and one needs to ask to gain the access.
  • Great for little ones. Actual plane cockpit for little ones to stay entertained.
  • Provides a pleasant personal experience, full-rotation flight simulator, great exhibits, love the location.
  • Wonderful experience. Staff proactively gave us a trip around with many interesting facts. Thank you! Must visit if you are in the area. Pros - Very quiet on weekday, very friendly, helpful and knowledgeable staff, cool planes and a very realistic simulator. Get cheap deal on groupon. Cons - None

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