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National Museum of Flight, North Berwick
(4.6/5 based on 550+ reviews on the web)
The National Museum of Flight is Scotland's national aviation museum at East Fortune Airfield, just south of the village of East Fortune, in East Lothian. It is one of the museums within National Museums Scotland. The museum is housed in the original wartime buildings of RAF East Fortune which is one of the best preserved wartime airfields in the UK. As a result of this the entire site is a scheduled ancient monument with no permanent structures added by the museum. The hangars, control tower and stores were designated as Category B listed buildings by Historic Scotland, but this designation was removed in 2013 as they were already covered by the stricter scheduling.The museum received 104,240 visitors in 2006.
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Reviews
TripAdvisor
  • I had been keen to visit this museum as I often pass it on my way to visit family in Edinburgh. I was not disappointed. Most people will visit this museum to see/go on board the Concorde (myself inclu...  more »
  • Young and old to whom like planes will feel truly in a fairytale place. Even my mum who's ' 31 and that planes don't know anything with emotion she approached the small WWII German reconnaissance plane: "how many times I've seen him go!"
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  • On our way home from Edinburgh, we popped in to visit this museum as it was sign posted along the A1. What a gem it is, I;m really interested in aviation, but not my wife, but she really enjoyed the e...  more »
Google
  • This is a small aerospace museum by any standard. That said they have a Vulcan and a Concorde! Worth the admission for those two alone. It's well laid out in a small area. Lots of information is available and for the air enthusiast/nerd (i.e. me) you'll find staff there willing to bore the tears out of whoever you dragged along with trivial detail about the planes on show. Again, they have a Concorde! All the history is there for you to explore as you would expect but I never through I would get to go on board! Yes that's right, you can go on board and get up close and personal with one of the most beautiful aircraft ever to grace the skies. The two other hangers contain the history of domestic travel in Scotland and various British fighter jets, Tornado, Jaguar, Harrier, Spitfire and more. It breaks my heart to see a Vulcan left outside on display after seeing the efforts made at RAF Cosford to preserve theirs but it's there along with an example payload (yep - a nuke). There's a small cafe and lots of parking too.
  • WHAT a disappointment! A spectacular site, fantastic history, the opportunity to create a first class collection and what do they do? Turn it into a children's theme park. Artefacts are beautifully displayed and lit, but thin on the ground and the captions are all aimed at primary aged children. Are adults not allowed to learn anything? A good collection of civil aircraft, topped by Concorde: a Vulcan heads the military list. Play 'spot the mistakes' with the time line. The rarest (?) item on display is a Napier Nomad compound engine which is in one of the children's play areas: do these people not recognise the importance of what they have got? Stay away from the food. It is beautifully presented but my burger was still sitting like a lump of lead in my stomach six hours later. I gave it three stars. On reflection that was too generous.
  • Great Aviation museum located across part of a old Raf air field. The multiple hangers include military and civilian aircraft as well as the concord experience. The Flying Fun room has great hands on activities for all the family. The Aviator Cafe is also a great place to get something to eat or drink.
  • Inspirational and impressive displays of the eras of aviation and its history. Especially the legendary Concorde housed in one of the hangars.
  • Great museum hidden away in the countryside. The airfield itself dates back to the First World War so the history of the place is interesting enough by itself. Add to that 4 fantastic hangars - Concorde, Military aviation, Civil aviation and a Restoration hangar - and a couple of other interactive exhibits, and there's plenty to see. I could easily spend the whole day but the place isn't enormous so you can get through it in an hour or so if you just glance at everything. There are a few big aircraft outside you can get inside most days, but they're occasionally locked up. The main attraction is of course Concorde, which can be seen in all its glory with most of the first hangar dedicated to it. There's also an audio tour at no extra cost, which is well worth doing. The rest of the hangars are filled with aircraft from every era. While the hangars are only a minute's walk apart, there's a shuttle bus for those less mobile - or if it's raining! The smaller exhibits break up the tedium if you're not into aircraft so much - lots of historical items from the airfield's past, and a lot of WWII memorabilia. There's an excellent interactive exhibit which kids will love, but they do a good job of dotting smaller interactive bits and pieces around in other sections too, so the little ones shouldn't get bored! Foodwise there's a small café which serves good food, albeit at prices you might expect in a museum. Plenty of outdoor seating for picnics though!