Disclosure: I was given tickets for my family to visit the Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex to facilitate my review. The views expressed in this post are my own.
Road Tripping To Florida
This summer we embarked on a road trip to end all road trips. It was epic. It was a trip I had dreamed about for years. Not necessarily to the destination we picked, but a cross-country road trip has been on my bucket list for ages. I had hoped to do a cross-country road trip…perhaps in an RV…to the Grand Canyon, Yellowstone, and Mount Rushmore, but school, swim team schedules, volleyball tournaments, college, and of course money meant we didn’t stray far from the East coast. Except for two trips to California, we’ve mainly vacationed to Florida (twice), Williamsburg (VA, three times), Niagara Falls (the Canadian side, once), and Pennsylvania (many times). I’ve visited Minnesota, North Carolina, Texas, and South Carolina without the kids. My husband has spent a few days in Las Vegas. Even with these road trips, the vast majority of the United States is uncharted territory for my family.
Sightseeing at the Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex
A trip out West wasn’t in the cards this year. Not enough vacation time. That didn’t stop us from doing an Epic Road Trip! After extensive planning in a very short time frame–we thrive on last minute planning–the Epic Road. This Epic Road Trip combined two trips…a tour of colleges in the South with a family vacation to the South. This Epic Road Trip, dubbed the #CollegeTourCation, saw the 5 of us driving over 2,500 miles…in an 8-day period…crammed in a 9-year-old minivan…packed to the rafters with suitcases, backpacks, blankets, drinks, snacks, towels, and sunscreen (2006 Toyota Sienna…you did not let us down!)…staying at 7 hotels…eating countless free hotel breakfast buffets…and stopping at more restaurants, fast food places, and pizza joints than I care to count…touring 6 colleges…visiting 5 tourist spots…the Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex was a huge hit with all of us! Phew! Writing everything down tires me out!
What You Need To Know About the Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex
- The Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex is open 9 a.m. to 7 p.m.
- Admission to the KSC Visitor Complex is $50/adult and $40 for Child (3-11) for one-day admission. Multiday tickets are available. Don’t forget to ask about special tours, events, and launches.
- Admission to the Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex includes two IMAX space films — Journey to Space 3D and Hubble 3D, all exhibits and shows, the Kennedy Space Center Bus Tour, the U.S. Astronaut Hall of Fame (located just outside the KSC Visitor Complex; admission is valid for up to 7 days after you visit), and so much more!
- Musings from Me Tip: If you arrive before 10 a.m., visit the Rocket Garden, Children’s Playdome, and all of the exhibits on the main concourse: Nature and Technology, Journey to Mars, Astronaut Encounter. If you arrive at or after 10 a.m. proceed directly to the Kennedy Space Center Bus Tour boarding area.
- The Kennedy Space Center Bus Tour starts at 10 a.m. each day, runs continuously every 15 minutes, and includes a stop at the Apollo/Saturn V Center. The tour culminates at the Space Center Atlantis building. The KSC Bus Tour is 90 minutes long. Plan to spend at least 1 hour at the Apollo/Saturn V Center. Plan to spend about 6-8 hours at the KSC Visitor Complex. There is so much to do!
- The Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex Bus Tour includes: Space Shuttle Atlantis, Shuttle Launch Experience (an interactive motion ride), Meet an Astronaut (we met Donald Thomas, a veteran Space Shuttle mission specialist), Astronaut Encounter, Mission Status Briefing, Journey to Mars: Explorers Wanted, and Character Appearances, and much more.
- The Kennedy Space Center Bus Tour is the only way to see the entire working spaceflight center. We saw the massive Vehicle Assembly Building where shuttles and rockets are assembled, the Mobile Launch Pad and the gravel path that the Mobile Launch Pad moves on to take shuttles and rockets to the Launch Area, and much more.
- The Apollo/Saturn V Center — a stop on the Kennedy Spaced Center Bus Tour gave my family and I a chance to “touch a moon rock, experience the thrill of liftoff in the Firing Room and stand beneath the largest rocket ever flown.” Allow 2-3 hours to fully experience the Apollo/Saturn V Center in addition to the KSC Bus Tour.
- The Kennedy Space Center Bus Tour ends at the Space Shuttle Atlantis building. With over 60 exhibits and simulators we had fun learning the history of the U.S. space shuttle program. Allow 2 hours to tour the Space Shuttle Atlantis building.
- Musings from Me Tip: A must-see at the Space Shuttle Atlantis are is the Space Shuttle Experience where you “strap in for the sights, sounds and excitement of a space shuttle launch.”
Want To Learn More About the Kennedy Space Center?
- Visit the Kennedy Space Center website. There’s also an official NASA site for the Kennedy Space Center for more technical information. The KSC site is for visitor information.
- Like Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex on Facebook.
- Follow @ExploreSpaceKSC on Twitter.
- Follow KennedySpaceCenter on Instagram.
- Watch videos about the Kennedy Space Center on the YouTube channel.