Payload Blog

Your 2018 Holidays in Space Mission


Happy Holidays from Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex! This year has been incredible with so many new additions to the complex. We welcome you come see all that is new and enjoy some Florida sun, sand and, of course, space this holiday season. We’ve put together a few tips to help you make the most of your visit during this busy time of year.

The Kennedy Space Center decorates the Rocket Garden for the holidays.
  1. Arrive Early!

    Plan to spend the entire day at the visitor complex. The visitor complex opens at 9:00 AM every day, but the parking lot opens at 8:30 AM. We welcome a larger amount of visitors December 26 - 31, so plan to arrive early during this week to help beat the lines and see your favorite exhibits and attractions.

    Need some help preparing for your visit? Take a look at our Plan Your Visit page for information on what to do before you arrive, and what we recommend while you are here.
  2. Have a Game Plan

    Plan your day by visiting Explore Attractions on our website before your visit to see how long we recommend you plan for each attraction. Please note that wait times are not included in these tour times. Upon arrival, consult the Daily Schedule for show times and other important information. Don’t miss Space Shuttle Atlantis®, the KSC Bus Tour featuring a stop at the Apollo/Saturn V Center, Heroes & Legends featuring the U.S. Astronaut Hall of Fame®, Astronaut Encounter or NASA Now. All of these are included with admission!

    Bonus Tip: If you find you did not have time to do all you wanted in one day, visit Guest Services and ask about Multiday Tickets or Annual Passes so you can return all year!
  3. Eat Lunch Early or Late

    If you can, break for lunch either earlier or later than the typical 12:00 noon lunchtime to minimize wait times. Consider purchasing Lunch With An Astronaut or Dinner With An Astronaut as well. With a reservation to either, enjoy a sit-down buffet meal and hear first-hand accounts of living and working in space from a real veteran NASA astronaut. This dining experience fills fast so be sure to reserve early.

    Reserve Your Spot

    Bonus Tip: You are also welcome to bring your lunch to the visitor complex. Please remember to bring your items in soft-sided coolers only and leave any glass containers or alcoholic beverages at home.
  4. Be Prepared for Longer Lines

    As we mentioned, the week of December 26 - 31 is especially busy at the visitor complex. You can anticipate to wait in lines for security screening, bus tours, dining locations and other main attractions. We move the lines along as smoothly and as quickly as capacities allow, and as soon as we are able to safely settle visitors on buses. Also, remember that many of the attractions have pre-shows that allow in dozens or even hundreds of guests at a time on a fixed schedule. They are well worth the watch (especially in Atlantis!), and we allow large amounts of people to enter at a time.

    Bonus Tip: Purchase a Special Interest Bus Tour! These tours are enhanced from our Kennedy Space Center Bus Tour and allow you closer access beyond NASA’s gates. This will help you bypass the regular bus tour line. No need to take the regular Kennedy Space Center Bus Tour, if you've selected an upgraded Special Interest Tour. Just be sure to arrive early enough that you do not miss your designated meeting time.

    Purchase Tour

  5. Purchase Tickets Ahead of Time

    You can help minimize the entrance lanes by pre-purchasing your tickets online. You may either print them or load them on your phone for entry (look for a barcode to know you are on the right page). This will ensure you bypass the Ticket and Will Call lines. We are unable to scan a photo of your ticket, so please use the original ticket received by email.

    Buy Tickets


Finally, wrap up your day by seeing the kinetic light show during Holidays in Space this year. Shows begin nightly at 5:00 PM from December 14 – 30, excluding Christmas Day, December 25.

Learn More

Thank you for including Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex in your holiday plans! We look forward to sharing the celebrations with you!