The Flying Leatherneck Aviation Museum in San Diego is the only museum in the world primarily dedicated to United States Marine Corps (USMC) aviation. It has the largest and most complete collection of historical aircraft flown by U.S. Marine pilots in the world. The Museum tells the proud story of USMC Aviation and the part it has played in defending America.
The Museum was established in 1989 on MCAS El Toro in Orange County, CA. When Base Realignment closed El Toro in 1999, a group of retired Marines from San Diego, led by Major Generals Bob Butcher and Frank Lang, spearheaded the move of the aircraft and artifacts to MCAS Miramar.
The Museum maintains and restores vintage aircraft used by the United States Marine Corps (USMC) through work performed by employees and volunteers.
In the last 12 months, 28,000 people from around the world came to the Museum.
The Museum’s regular hours are Tues-Sun from 9:00 am to 3:30 pm. The Museum will be closed on the following holidays and special event days.
- November – Veterans Day
- November-Friday after Thanksgiving
- December-Christmas Day
- January-New Year’s Day
- Closed all Federal Holidays
- Closed during the Miramar Air Show
4203 Anderson Avenue
San Diego, CA 92145.
*Sentry-free museum entrance is on Miramar Rd between Camino Ruiz and Cabot Drive.
Click to view on: Google Maps.
P.O. Box 45316
San Diego, CA 92145-0316
At The Museum
Aircraft and Artifact Displays
- 31 aircraft currently on display, including “Lady Ace”, the helicopter that evacuated the U.S. ambassador from the rooftop of the embassy in Saigon on April 30, 1975. See the birds-eye view.
- 8 galleries of artifacts from World War I to present day including Marines in Space, Medal of Honor Recipients and Military Working Dogs.
- One of the world’s finest collections of Marine Aviation patches.
- On-site gift shop offering Marine Corps and aviation-themed books, models, patches, clothing and gifts.
Current restoration projects
- The iconic World War II-era Douglass Dauntless SBD bomber.
- Restoration work has been done for the USS Midway Museum and Air and Space Museum in San Diego.
What You’ll Experience:
Staff – Historians – Guides:
The Museum is staffed almost entirely by veterans, many of whom served as pilots, air crew, or ground crew in past conflicts and wars.
“They give engaging tours, share spellbinding stories, and provide eyewitness accounts and insights on history and personal experiences.”
These veterans as a group donate more than 19,000 hours of time annually to share their deep
knowledge with visitors.
Great for Parents!
San Diego enjoys gorgeous weather year-round, and children love to walk around our planes. The outdoor display area is fenced in, so you can let your kids explore without them wandering too far astray. The planes are fun to explore for all ages!
Special Events, Temporary and Traveling Exhibits:
Military Working Dogs Exhibit & Special Event
Exhibit – History, training and missions of military working dogs. Through June, 2020
Demonstrations- Live demonstrations of military working dogs will be hosted at the museum.
Flying Leatherneck Aviation Museum – Free Family Friendly Events
Open Cockpit Days- Summer Events
Imagine you are a pilot at our Open Cockpit Days! Held during the summer on select dates our Open Cockpit Days are a must do, free and fun family-friendly activity at the Flying Leatherneck Aviation Museum in San Diego
Save the date: See next summers series of Open Cockpit Days.
Picnic With A Pilot - Summer Event
Picnic with a pilot featuring amazing distinguished pilots and aircrew occur during Open Cockpit Days during the summer on select dates. Our featured pilots and/or crew who maintained aircraft share their history, experiences and memorable moments from their careers. They also have Q & A.
Stay tuned for next summers series of Picnic With A Pilot.
Our museum is proud to have more than 48 aircraft in its collection. Our restoration staff works tirelessly to restore these planes to their original glory. Exhibits are rotated on a regular basis in order to provide variety to our visitors.