arrow-down arrow-left arrow-right arrow-up play-button plus tab-indicator dots close menu search facebook google-plus instagram pinterest rss twitter youtube rss-two heart Check FeaturedBadge linkedin minus apps placeholder linkedin

Air Shows and Aviation Museums in San Diego

Explore and Celebrate San Diego's Aviation Heritage

San Diego has a long history regarding aviation. In 1911, Glenn Curtiss, the Father of Naval Aviation, demonstrated his Model D-III from San Diego Bay for the US Navy and a year later the Navy established the first aviation squadron on the northeast side of Coronado's North Island. A decade later, Ryan Airlines designed and built Charles Lindbergh's iconic Spirit of St. Louis in a factory located right next to the San Diego International Airport, known locally as Lindbergh Field. 

Air Shows

Airshow San Diego

  • Formerly known as Wings Over Gillespie, Air Show San Diego in San Diego's East County features a representative collection of historic aircraft, amazing aerobatics, military re-enactors, paratroopers, and exciting mock battles. In addition to everything happening in the air and on Gillespie Field's runway, Air Show San Diego also boasts a fun kids’ zone, amusement rides, education displays, a variety of foods and beverages, and a beer garden.

    > Find out more about AirShow San Diego

MCAS Miramar Air Show

  • One of the most popular events in San Diego, MCAS Miramar Air Show features two full days of flying and entertainment, food and novelty booths, children's activity area, military displays, trade show and more! The annual air show regularly hosts spectacular flight demonstration squadrons including the U.S. Navy Blue Angels, U.S.A.F. Thunderbirds, Patriots Jet Team and the Canadian Forces 431 Snowbirds.

    > Find out more about the MCAS Miramar Air Show

Aviation Museums

Flying Leatherneck Aviation Museum

  • What sets this museum apart from all others is the fact that it is the only museum in the world dedicated to preserving the incredible contributions made by United States Marine Corps aviators and their ground support personnel. A dedicated group of staff and volunteers preserve and restore the more than 30 Marine Corps aircraft displayed throughout the museum grounds. Bring the kids to one of the Open Cockpit Days so they can sit in the cockpit and feel like a real pilot!

    > Find out more about the Flying Leathernecks Museum

San Diego Air & Space Museum

  • California's Official Air and Space Museum, the San Diego Air & Museum in Balboa Park houses a collection of historic aircraft and spacecraft from all over the world, including a flyable replica of Lindbergh's Spirit of St. Louis, the actual Apollo 9 Command Module spacecraft, the real GPS satellite on display in the world, MaxFlight® and Space Shuttle simulators, a 3D/4D Theater, interactive kid zone, ever-changing traveling exhibitions and the Flight Path Grill serving up food and a million-dollar view of Downtown San Diego from the Observation Deck.

    > Find out more about the San Diego Air & Space Museum

USS Midway Museum

  • Imagine living aboard a floating city at sea with 4,500 shipmates on the USS Midway, the longest-serving U.S. Navy aircraft carrier of the 20th century! Exploring the galleys, officer's country, sleeping quarters and the four-acre flight deck. Walk through helicopters, ride three types of flight simulators, climb in bunks, and sit in ejection seat theatre. Admission includes a self-guided audio tour to over 60 locations from the engine room to control tower, narrated by Midway sailors who lived or worked in each.

    > Find out more about the USS Midway Museum

Discover more museums throughout San Diego, each with it's own unique style and history.

Find a place to stay

Book online or call 1-800-350-6205 to speak with a local expert

Related Articles and Features

Deals just for you

Childcare Services

Kids Free Rental Item from Toddler's Travels

Toddler's Travels
Valid: Oct 1 - Oct 31, 2018

Reserve one deluxe item (Crib, Toddler bed, Premium car seat, or City Mini GT/BOB Revolution Stroller) with Toddler's Travels and add any non-premium item of equal or lesser value from the...

Accommodation

Westgate Escape Package

The Westgate Hotel
Valid: Apr 10 - ongoing

The Westgate offers guests an exclusive package: stay in a deluxe room with the standard rate of $299, and stay a second night for only $49 plus tax! Guests will enjoy a Deluxe Room, some...

Galleries & Museums

Save up to $3 on admission to The Nat

San Diego Natural History Museum
Valid: Jan 25, 2018 - ongoing

Save $3 on Adult Admission and $2 off other admission categories at the San Diego Natural History Museum. Admission includes access to 3D films. 

Events to check out

Event

A.S. Roma vs. Tottenham Hotspur F.C.

Jul 25, 2018

The International Champions Cup is bringing together two of the best soccer clubs in the world to SDCU Stadium this summer - AS Roma and Tottenham Hotspur.

Event

Supergirl Surf Pro

Jul 27 - Jul 29, 2018

The world’s top professional female surfers are back in Oceanside, CA for the 11th Supergirl Surf Pro, a 3-day event July 27-29, 2018. The weekend will be jam-packed with world-class...

Event

US Sand Sculpting Challenge & Dimensional Art Expo

3D Art Expo LLC
Aug 31 - Sep 3, 2018

One of the top 20 "Must See" seaside festivals in the world according to American Express and USA Today's 10 Best, the U.S. Sand Sculpting Challenge and Dimensional Art Exposition will return to San...

Stay in touch

Sign up to receive the latest news, events, and updates about San Diego. Our monthly and weekly newsletters will keep you informed about the latest and greatest happenings in the destination.

Sign Up

Visitor planning guide

For the ultimate guide to planning your San Diego vacation, view and download the San Diego Visitor Planning Guide, packed with useful information that will help you plan the perfect San Diego getaway.

Read More

Partners

Explore

Plan

Stay

Follow Us

Language:

English | Change Language

Select your country or region

China FlagChinaGermany FlagGermanyGreat Britain FlagGreat BritainJapan FlagJapanMexico FlagMexicoKorea FlagKoreaSwitzerland FlagSwitzerlandBrazil FlagBrazilFrance FlagFranceAustralia FlagAustraliaCanada FlagCanada USA

Or use Google Translate

Afrikaans Albanian Arabic Belarusian Bulgarian Catalan Croatian Czech Danish Deutsch Español Estonian Filipino Finnish Francais Galician Greek Haitian-Creole Hebrew Hindi Hungarian Icelandic Indonesian Irish Italian Japanese Korean Latvian Lithuanian Macedonian Malay Maltese Nederlands Norwegian Persian Polish Portuguese Romanian Russian Serbian Slovak Slovenian Swahili Swedish Telugu Thai Turkish Ukranian Vietnamese Welsh Yiddish