USS Midway Museum Coupons & Information Guide

Photo of jet pilot at USS Midway Museum

We all know that aircraft carriers are massive. Being on one makes us realize just how big.  Having the opportunity to step aboard and tour the USS Midway, the longest serving Navy aircraft carrier of the 20th century, is an awesome experience.  On a journey through this warship, compelling exhibits and dynamic interactive experiences put you up-close to both man and machine.  You leave with a sense of what life is like aboard a floating city patrolling somewhere in one of the world’s oceans.

USS Midway tours are popular with military personnel, past and present, and they are also wonderful, eye-opening experiences for people of all ages and backgrounds. The list of over 60 restored areas – from the Ship’s Island/ Bridge, the carrier’s Command Center located high above the flight deck, to the massive main engine room below the water line in the bottom of the ship – makes the USS Midway a San Diego must see.  These highlights give you an idea of why.

Photo of Blast Hole
See restored vintage WWII aircraft up-close.  Climb into cockpits to feel what it’s like inside. Visit the Battle of Midway Theater where the Battle of Midway comes alive through interactive holographic displays.  Don’t miss the poignant “Operation Frequent Wind,” the story of USS Midway’s special role in the 1975 humanitarian rescue off Saigon.  See the Bird Dog, the light plane on which a fleeing family made a desperation landing on Midway’s flight deck.

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Photo of Dauntless
The massive Flight Deck has instant appeal.  Walk around and touch 26 aircraft, fighters, bombers and helicopters, that took naval aviation into the jet age. Don’t miss the Meatball exhibit, the special Fresnel Lens Optical landing system which helps pilots land on the flight deck at fast speeds. Go on a special docent-led tour of the Ship’s Island/Bridge, the Command Center where the massive vessel is steered, and where the Captain oversees flight operations. These special tours are free with general admission, on a first-come, first-served basis.


Walk through Squadron Ready Rooms.  See a special exhibition on naval helicopters. Visit the Command Information Center and the Carrier Air Group, where day to day operations take place.


Below the flight deck, imagine a beehive housing a community of thousands of people going about their daily lives of work and leisure.  This is where you really get the feel for living 24/7 in a floating city out at sea.  Walk through mess halls; see where thousands of meals were prepared each day; check out the tight quarters where sailors slept.  Lie in a narrow bunk to see how you like it.  Walk through the engine room, imagining how it must feel to work below the ship’s water line and in the heat of the gigantic engines.

Visiting Tips

  • Arrive early in the day.
  • Tours are self-guided audio tours. Choose locations of interest and see them at your own pace. Allow 2-3 hours.
  • The Family Self-Guided Audio Tour has children in mind.  The entire family is engaged as “Airman Sam Rodriguez” leads you on the audio tour. Follow his instructions to get to 30 great places. Start the adventure by picking up an “Airman Rodriguez” activity sheet at the information desk.  Throughout the audio tour, children answer questions on the sheet which is shown to the docents at the info desk at the end of the tour. Then, during a special ceremony, the children proudly receive their Pilot Wings!
  • Volunteer Docents, all former military personnel, are in various locations throughout the tour. Enhance your visit by asking them questions and listening to their stories.
  • Optional Simulator Experiences. For a small additional fee, pilot your aircraft through rolls, spins and loops on a wild ride in Combat 360, a 2-person simulator. Or, launch your F/18 off the carrier, hit your target and return “home,” on Flight Avionics simulator which holds 12.  Height restrictions apply.
  • Wrap up a great day with lunch or a snack on the Fantail Café.

Save $9.95 With The Old Town Trolley & USS Midway Discount Ticket Package– Use Promo Code OTTMID

Save $4.00 On USS Midway Tickets– Use Promo Code MIDWAY