Prepare the family for blast-off and to experience a place unlike any other. At Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex℠, visitors will be able to discover the epic story of the U.S. space program and watch it all come to life. Nowhere else can visitors get this close to space without leaving Earth. Located at America’s spaceport, Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex will transport you to a realm of memorable experiences that allow you to see, hear, and feel what it’s like to live and work in space.
1. Space Shuttle Atlantis®
Stand in awe of an American icon at the permanent home of the actual space shuttle Atlantis. Displayed as if in orbit with payload doors open, the spacecraft appears to have just undocked from the space station. With more than 60 interactive exhibits celebrating the history, technology, and impact of NASA’s Space Shuttle Program, this complex will prepare the whole family for liftoff.
2. Heroes & Legends
Celebrate the pioneers of NASA’s early space programs, which inspired a nation to reach for the stars. Experience the stories of the brave astronauts that first left Earth’s gravity in a 4D, immersive experience. After, explore the new U.S. Astronaut Hall of Fame® and discover in-depth backgrounds of our space flight heroes in compelling, interactive displays.
3. Kennedy Space Center Bus Tour
Kennedy Space Center is a massive complex spanning thousands of acres. How can you possibly see the whole thing? Simply hop on a bus tour and you’ll go behind the gates of NASA, getting access to historic launch sites and working spaceflight facilities. The tour takes you up close to the main sites for great photo ops. Those hankering to see more can book a special interest tour (for a separate fee) and make exclusive stops along the way.
4. Apollo/Saturn V Center
Few periods in recent American history are as compelling as the space race that culminated in the manned lunar landings. At the Apollo/Saturn V Center you and your family can relive the key moments. Stand at the foot of a monumental Saturn V, the largest rocket ever flown. At 363 feet, it’s taller than the Statue of Liberty! Outfitted with consoles from the Apollo launches, the Firing Room lets you relive the emotions of the first crewed orbit of the Moon in 1968. Touch a Moon rock, see an authentic Lunar Module, imagine yourself in a spacesuit tucked into a capsule hurtling to beyond.
5. Astronaut Encounter
Here’s an opportunity like no other, a chance to meet a living legend—one of the veteran astronauts or mission specialists who helped create space-flight history. Their clear-headed bravery in tough times, their sense of humor, and their teamwork made dreams a reality. Listen to their stories during a live presentation at Universe Theater. Check the daily schedule for show times.
6. Rocket Garden
Walk among the giants to see rockets from NASA’s Mercury, Gemini, and Apollo programs. These towering vehicles powered the aspirations of the entire world, starting in 1958 with the launch of a 71-foot Juno 1, which sent America’s first satellite into orbit. The 83-foot Mercury-Redstone propelled astronaut Alan Shepard into space in 1961 during NASA’s Project Mercury, making him the first American in space. As you continue your tour, the rockets grow taller and more powerful as we reached for the Moon.
7. Shuttle Launch Experience®
Go into outer space. That’s right, strap yourself in for the Shuttle Launch Experience! You’ll start with a pre-launch briefing by veteran space shuttle Commander Charles Bolden. Then get ready for takeoff. During this eight-and-a-half-minute simulation you'll ascent into orbit and fly amongst the stars. The visuals and rumbles of blasting into space are a thrill for all ages, so much so that veteran NASA astronauts have called it “the next best thing to flying aboard the space shuttle.”
8. IMAX® Theater Space Films
The next best thing to being in space is experiencing it through the magic of three-dimensional movies. Space-themed films included with daily admission take you on a stunning visual ride. Like in Journey to Space 3D, narrated by Sir Patrick Stewart, you’ll get an overview of NASA’s past, present, and future. You can also check out our blue globe from an astronaut’s perspective.
9. Astronaut Training Simulators
Do you have the right stuff to be an astronaut? Inside Space Shuttle Atlantis, you can train on high-tech simulators just like the astronauts. Learn how to pilot and land a space shuttle. Practice docking with the International Space Station. Perform tasks in a virtual spacewalk. Experience the satisfaction of completing a mission by landing at Kennedy Space Center.
10. Journey to Mars
Does the idea of traveling to Mars spark your imagination? Whether you want to do it yourself, or cheer the next generation of space explorers on, you’ll be fascinated with NASA’s plans to explore deep space, including Mars, the asteroids, and the Moon (again). Children and adults will enjoy this multimedia exhibit and live presentation of cutting-edge technology.