Opened in 1984 alongside Robins Air Force Base near Macon, Georgia, this museum has grown to become the second largest Air Force museum in the United States. While there, you can do more than gaze at the historic aircraft on display—you may even have a chance to chat with a veteran who once flew them.
One of the things that makes this museum unique is the fact that they regularly invite retired veterans who flew on these aircraft to hang out near the aircraft they flew on. While they’re there, the former flyers have informal discussions with visitors. The chance to learn about aviation history from people who have actually lived it offers an experience you won’t get from any book or documentary.
Even if you go on a day when the veterans aren’t present, there’s still so much to explore. It’s one of the few air museums where the workers undertake historic aircraft restoration onsite and in full view of the public. They have recently started on a Boeing B17 Bomber from World War II.
The museum has expanded over the years and now includes several different hangers that are dedicated to various eras in aviation history. Some notable, exceptionally rare aircraft on display include the SR-71A Blackbird which set the absolute speed record, a U-2C, a UC-78B Bamboo Bomber, and a Mig-17. The museum even invites children to come and learn and has three aircraft cockpits that they can climb in to get a more realistic experience.