The Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum is located at Pier 86, along the Hudson River, near 12th Avenue and 46th Street on the West Side of Manhattan. It consists of an education center, several decommissioned military ships, and dozens of historic aircraft. There visitors of all ages can explore these remarkable vessels firsthand while enjoying an assortment of exciting and informative programming.
History of the Intrepid Air Craft Carrier
The Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum has a rich, fascinating history. It was founded in 1982, when private investors acquired the decommissioned USS Intrepid, an aircraft carrier that played an important role in American military history. The Intrepid—which was named a National Historic Landmark in 1986—anchors a collection that in time grew to comprise multiple ships, nearly 30 unique planes, and even a space shuttle.
In 2006, the Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum closed for almost two years to undergo an extensive renovation project. Today it features an approximately 20,000-square-foot education center and welcomes over 1 million visitors each and every year.
What’s at the Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum
The Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum has both an impressive permanent collection and an eclectic lineup of rotating exhibits. The museum’s star attraction, of course, is the USS Intrepid. Launched in 1943, the Intrepid served for over 30 years, seeing action in World War II, the Vietnam War, and even functioning for a time as a NASA recovery vessel. Visitors can explore numerous parts of the restored ship’s interior, and view over 20 unique airplanes on its historic flight deck.
Other exhibits of particular note include the USS Growler, the sole existing American guided missile submarine that can be toured by civilians; the British Airways Concorde plane responsible for the fastest transatlantic flight in history; and the Space Shuttle Pavilion, which houses Enterprise and memorabilia related to its influential role in the NASA program.
There are two dining options located at the Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum. Aviator Grill is a sit-down restaurant with a menu full of classic American fare like burgers, pizzas, salads, and more. It’s found on the second floor of the Welcome Center, and has views of Pier 86. Intrepid Marketplace, located on the ship’s mess deck, is the more casual option. It serves wraps, soups, sandwiches, pizzas, and has both vegetarian and vegan selections. At the present time, it is temporarily closed.
The Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum also has two distinct gift shop options. The gift shop found on the first floor of the Welcome Center is the more traditional souvenir store. It sells a number of accessories, souvenirs, toys, and pieces of apparel that reflect the museum’s educational mission. A second gift shop, in the Space Shuttle Pavilion, specializes in NASA-related items perfect for those outer space-loving guests.
Tips for Visiting the Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum
- The Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum is included on several money saving tourist passes including the New York Pass, NY Explorer Pass and New York CityPASS.
- General Admission to Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum costs $33 for adults, $31 for seniors over the age of 65, and $24 for children between the ages of 5 and 12. Significant discounts are available for members of the military and residents of New York City.
- 3D films and flight simulators are a favorite part of the Intrepid experience for many visitors—but they aren’t part of your general admission ticket. Depending on which option you select, these add-ons can run you as much as 10 extra dollars.
- Admission to the Concorde is permitted only via private guided tour. These tours occur daily. In general, guided tours at Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum will cost you significantly more than general admission, but many visitors think they’re well worth it. You’ll need to contact the museum in advance of your visit if you’re interested.
- Not all portions of the Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum are accessible to those individuals in wheelchairs. These areas include Growler, Concorde, and the gallery deck of the Intrepid. The museum does, however, offer special programming for visitors with mobility concerns, so if this might be of interest to your or someone in your group, be certain to speak with a staff member.
- The Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum livestreams many of its special events across a variety of social media platforms. If you’d like to get a better sense of what to expect when you visit in person, consider checking out one of these programs.