With each visit to the Air Force Armament Museum, you will gaze in wonder at all the amazing aircraft and weaponry displayed there. Both the inside and outside of the museum are full of iconic machinery and much more, aimed at educating everyone about each piece. The aircraft span from the World War II-era until current times to provide an in-depth history of the planes and helicopters used by the Air Force.
Upon stepping on the grounds, you will undoubtedly want to make a beeline to the SR-71 Blackbird to see the fastest plane ever made. From there, you can stroll along the pathways to see many other phenomenal aircraft, including the B-52 long-range bomber. All around each plane are the bombs and missiles they all use to provide a sense of their sheer size and power. In their collection, they have everything from cluster bombs and Sparrow missiles to the Bunker Buster and MOAB.
If you manage to make your way indoors, there is still plenty more to see. For starters, they play an educational film on the creation of the Eglin Air Force Base on repeat all day. By watching this film, you can learn about why the base was created and its role in creating armaments of all kinds. Afterward, you can walk over to the gun vault to view all the different weapons used by Air Force personnel over the years. Or you can simply stroll through the venue to see all the other planes they house inside, such as the F-105 and F-80.
Visitors always look forward to seeing:
The SR-71 Blackbird sits right front and center as soon as you walk onto the grounds from the parking lot. With its ability to travel at Mach 3.2 speeds and reach 85,000 feet, this impressive plane holds all the airspeed and altitude records possible. Even standing still, it has a breathtaking appearance that demands attention from all angles.
MH-53 Pave Low IV
A short walk away from the Blackbird is the MH-53 Pave Low IV helicopter. This aircraft played an important role in the Vietnam War, Apollo Space Program, and many other missions through the years. Although it was retired in 2008, many hold this helicopter dear in their hearts, coming from near and far to take a glimpse at its beauty.
Republic P-47 Thunderbolt
If you want to check out the Republic P-47 Thunderbolt, you will have to head inside to the ground floor of the museum. There, you will find this aircraft sitting proudly under the lights and right next to the American flag. This plane was flown in World War II and became well-known for its ability to keep flying despite taking extensive damage.
Admission to the museum is always free, but the indoor area is not always accessible. If they are holding an event, they may close the museum doors, only allowing visitors to tour the grounds. When you do get to go inside, make sure to stop by the gift shop for a souvenir of your visit. They have everything from model plane kits to bomber jackets available for purchase.
– If you build up an appetite while checking out all the sights to behold, stop in at ‘The Pig in the Garden’ restaurant. You can order pulled pork, burgers, and much more without having to leave the museum grounds.
– Although admission is always free, they gladly take donations to keep the space in good condition and running smoothly.
– With so much to see here, expect to spend 90 minutes to over three hours checking out all the exhibits.