U.S. Space and Rocket Center
1 Tranquility Base, Huntsville, AL 35805, USA
An out of this world family vacationThis place is so cool, part museum, part interactive classroom and all things aeronautical. The installations here are the real deal. An actual Saturn V rocket is housed in the main building along with an Apollo capsule sporting scorch marks from reentry. The exhibits cover the history of the U.S. space program from it's very beginning up to the present. Parked outside you'll see a life size shuttle mockup, and at the main entrance a SR-71 Blackbird. The big draw here is the space camp. A fully immersive experience, the students learn how to plan a mission, run it from flight control, and during the mission are given tasks to make repairs using 1/6 gravity simulators. This is as realistic as it gets, and a chance to learn in a truly hands on way. Space camp offers week long programs along with family, adult and even corporate offerings. Accommodations are right on the grounds, and the center is only a short 10 minute drive from Huntsville. For a memorable family vacation, this should be at the top of your list. The center is also celebrating it's 45th anniversary, and has many special events coming up, so visit their website for the latest schedule. And don't forget to set aside some extra days to explore Huntsville. It's small city with a lot of history, beautiful architecture, a growing micro brewery scene, and some very good restaurants, don't miss the Gulf fresh seafood, it is fantastic.