07 Jun 2017
Planning for the Smithsonian
It is nearly impossible to know, understand the depth, wealth of knowledge, history, education, culture and beauty that the Smithsonian institution contribute to the Nation and the world until you visit one Smithsonian Museum.
The Smithsonian Museums are vast and take considerable time to visit. In some of the museums one can spend days because they are vast in scope and detail. Most first-time visitors do not know how to plan because they see Smithsonian with limited vision. It is therefore, of utmost importance to familiarize with the various institutions and get idea of what they offer so as to maximize the effectiveness of your visit.
Smithsonian institution is tied to the history of the nation from the early beginning. Brief Introduction to History from si.edu,
“The Smithsonian Institution was established with funds from James Smithson (1765-1829), a British scientist who left his estate to the United States to found “at Washington, under the name of the Smithsonian Institution, an establishment for the increase and diffusion of knowledge.” On August 10, 1846, the U.S. Senate passed the act organizing the Smithsonian Institution, which was signed into law by President James K. Polk.”
Since, and particularly in Washington DC, Smithsonian institutions have played great role in educating the public. Over the years the Smithsonian has grown and numbers. Today, there are 19 world-class museums, galleries, gardens, and a zoo.
These museums are rich in depth and they are vast. They offer different fields of interest that satisfy the needs of most visitors and best of all, they are free. Foreign visitors are often surprised that the museums are free.
Over the years, as the number of visitors to Washington DC grew, the number of people that visit the Smithsonian Museums has gotten higher.
Museums that experience large volumes of visitors are the Air and Space, American History, Natural History, The Holocaust and latest African American Museum.
These vast museums require adequate time to truly enjoy the depth of knowledge they offer. However, due to the large size of people that visit these museums it is important to plan. Most people visit Washington DC for limited time. Therefore, regardless of the duration of your stay it helps when concrete plans are put in place to maximize on your visit.
The hours of the Smithsonian institution are 10-5:30. Some of the museums have extended summer hours. The Portrait Gallery, Archives of American Art and American Art are open 11:30am to 7pm. The Zoo is open March 15–September: 9am to 6pm. (Grounds 8 a.m. to 7 p.m.)
For more information https://www.si.edu/museums