“the only museum in the U.S. dedicated to espionage”
The International Spy Museum opened in Washington, DC on July 19, 2002. It is the only public museum in the United States solely dedicated to espionage and the only one in the world to provide a global perspective on an all-but-invisible profession that has shaped history and continues to have a significant impact on world events. The Museum features the largest collection of international espionage artifacts ever placed on public display. It is the only public museum in the United States solely dedicated to espionage and the only one in the world to provide a global perspective on an all-but-invisible profession that has shaped history and continues to have a significant impact on world events. The Museum features the largest collection of international espionage artifacts ever placed on public display. Many of these objects are being seen by the public for the first time. These artifacts illuminate the work of famous spies and pivotal espionage actions as well as help bring to life the strategies and techniques of the men and women behind some of the most secretive espionage missions in world history.
Went here upon recommendation from family and it was a great time for both adults and kids. Plenty of cool spy gadgets both new and old, plus history. James Bond type stuff, cold war type stuff, plus stuff you never thought of or heard about.
Plan on about 2-4 hours.
Best museum I have ever been to
Short version: It was great! Lots of genuine historical items and information, and a big Bond-007 section too.
Long version: Didn't know what to expect, went in a on whim having walked passed it the previous day. Paid my money and was shown to an elevator. Up to the 3rd floor and there an intro sequence about being a spy, choose and memorize your legend, blah, blah, blah - bad 80s game show\video game stuff. Unimpressive first 15 minutes if you're older than 10.
After that things really improved, lots and lots of historical items including mini cameras, microphones, micro dots, gun lipsticks, gun umbras, disguising spy equipment, all accompanied by short by informative plaques explaining what you are looking.
Sections on the history of spying including World War II SOE equipment, Enigma machines, Bletchely Park, Cold war, Manhattan Project and Elizabethan spy masters.
Lots and lots of stuff (knifes, blades, and other movie props and the odd car) about 007 and the villains he meets\defeats - this section seemed to be a big hit with the teenage school party that appeared from nowhere.
Was expecting to kill an hour or so in the museum, 3 hours later I exited having rushed the last bits thinking the place was going close.
Well worth a visit.
Cute but not what I was expecting.
This was a highly recommended stop from a friend, and she knows me so well. Had a blast in this museum!!
You get your secret identity upon arrival and then make your way through the museum. Tons of interesting displays involving people and events. Along the way, you use your secret identity to engage with the displays. You are just walking along and a display will ask you if you are code name "such and such" and then you are engaged with that game. Too fun.
It is busy though so there were stations I went right by because of the # of people milling around just to get on and use.
I would definitely recommend this as one of the must dos when in DC.
Had a great time here! It’s very interactive which is fun for all ages, and finishes with a huge James Bond exhibit.
Pricey but interesting!
This was a lot of fun but super busy and therefore difficult to maneuver. Go later in the afternoon or dinner time to avoid crowding.
I wasn't too overly impressed with the Spy Museum .. perhaps because there is so much more to see and do in DC that is free ..
Standing line had the feel of a ride attraction that would just disappointe .. you know long wait 15 seconds of the actual experience
A good place to spend an afternoon. Better if you have kids. It's a little expensive, but they have a lot of neat things to look at.
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International Spy Museum
- Sun - Sat: 9:00 am - 7:00 pm
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