Over 16 museums and cultural institutions are spread throughout the almost 1,200 acres that make up the “Smithsonian of the West,” Balboa Park. Each museum offers unique experiences enticing visitors to return.
All of the museums keep things fresh with special traveling exhibitions that highlight exciting topics. These special exhibitions are always thought-provoking, educational and interactive. Below are just a few of these great exhibitions currently on display:
Through January 2013
Ever wanted to learn to fly a plane, or simply wondered how they fly? You can at the San Diego Air & Space Museum’s How Things Fly… special exhibition. For the parents in the audience, the exhibition sneaks in education through four different areas of hands-on fun: aerodynamics, propulsion, meteorology and air traffic control. The kids won’t see the learning coming!
Even the adults will have fun while attempting simulated flight on a helicopter or the temperamental Wright Flyer. Visitors can also strap on wings in a small wind tunnel, watch global updates of weather around the world in real time, or rediscover the simple joy of the flying a paper airplane.
Through September 9, 2012
While visitors might not find the Heart of the Ocean diamond (sorry, I just had to!), visitors to the Titanic: The Artifact Exhibition at the San Diego Natural History Museum will encounter over 200 artifacts retrieved from the wreckage of the doomed RMS Titanic, including delicate bottles of perfume, china bearing the logo of the elite White Star Line, and many other now-priceless objects.
As visitors enter the exhibit, they will climb inside recreations of the Titanic’s beautiful interior, assuming the identity of one of its unfortunate passengers to relive the ill-fated journey. Moving through the exhibit, the artifacts provide an intricate narrative of the sunken wreckage as they lay dormant beneath the sea between 1912 and their discovery in 1985.
Through May 27, 2012
Imagine driving west, with the warm summer wind blowing though the rolled down windows, the surfboards strapped to the roof, the Beach Boys blasting through the speakers and the car filled with excitement as you head toward the beach. What type of car would you be driving? Why the Woodie of course!
At the San Diego Automotive Museum, the endless summer continues with over a dozen impeccably restored Woodies take visitors back in time. Explore the history of these iconic and quintessential beach vehicles. Swim trunks and flip-flops are encouraged! Surf boards not included.
Through April 29, 2012
Discover how to avoid be sucked into a black hole at the Reuben H. Fleet Science Center! Young and old scientists will journey into space to learn about how the theory of black holes came to be. The interactive exhibits provide an insight into how black holes work, and clears up many common misconceptions.
Remember to not get sucked in for too long, there is plenty more to see at the Fleet including Geometry Playground, on display through June 19, 2012.
There are even more great exhibitions throughout Balboa Park and you can find more information at SanDiego.org/Arts. Pick up a Passport to Balboa Park or Stay-for-the-Day Pass to save on admission. (Note: Some special exhibitions have an added cost).
Tell us in the comments below, why do you keep going back to visit the beautiful Balboa Park?