We are very excited to share that the Smithsonian will begin reopening with two of its most family friendly facilities on Friday, July 24, 2020. The National Zoo in Northwest Washington, D.C., and the National Air and Space Museum’s Steven F. Udvar-Hazy Center in Chantilly, Virginia, near Washington Dulles International Airport will be reopening with some new Covid safety measures in place. All other Smithsonian museums will remain temporarily closed to the public.
As of now, visitors to the National Zoo and Udvar-Hazy Center will be required to obtain free, timed-entry passes for both locations. The National Zoo will be open 8 a.m.–4 p.m. daily, and the Udvar-Hazy Center will be open 10 a.m.–5:30 p.m. daily.
The new safety measures will include:
- Requesting that all visitors who are sick or do not feel well stay home.
- Requiring that visitors ages six and older wear face coverings during their visit—inside the Udvar-Hazy Center and Zoo buildings as well as in Zoo outdoor spaces. Face coverings are also strongly recommended for visitors between the ages of two and six, per CDC guidelines.
- Limiting the number of people in each facility by requiring all visitors to obtain a free, timed-entry pass in advance of their visit. Beginning today, July 20, visitors can reserve passes online or by phone and select the desired date and time for their visit. The Smithsonian will release 5,000 timed passes per day for the Zoo and about 1,500 passes per day for the Udvar-Hazy Center. Those numbers may change over time.
- Implementing safe social distancing, including some one-way paths and directional guidance where appropriate.
- Providing hand-sanitizing stations for visitors and conducting enhanced cleaning throughout both facilities.
Families can still access restrooms, outdoor concessions and retail kiosks at the Zoo. Indoor concessions and retail will not be open at the Udvar-Hazy Center, but food trucks will be on-site when available.
Be prepared for some changes. Some exhibits, interactives, rides, demonstrations, theaters or indoor spaces may be closed or operate at limited capacity. All on-site public tours and events are temporarily suspended. Detailed information for visitors is available on the National Zoo’s website and the National Air and Space Museum’s website.
All visitors will need to obtain a free, timed-entry pass to enter the Zoo and the Udvar-Hazy Center. You can reserve passes online at si.edu/tickets or by phone at 1-800-514-3849, ext. 1. An individual will be able to reserve up to six passes. Visitors can choose to print timed-entry passes at home or show a digital timed-entry pass on their mobile device. Each visitor must have a pass regardless of age.
Visitors who plan to drive and park at the Zoo can purchase a parking pass that serves as a timed-entry pass for all people in the vehicle; they will not need to separately reserve individual timed-entry passes. Vehicles may only enter the Zoo through the Connecticut Avenue entrance.
At the Udvar-Hazy Center, visitors can pay for parking as they depart.
The Smithsonian is not announcing a reopening date for its other museums at this time. Updates will be available on si.edu and via Facebook and Twitter @Smithsonian.