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Smithsonian castle

Safety & Security


Health and Safety Measures

Our current health and safety measures are based on guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and local governments. These measures may change in response to changing CDC COVID-19 Community Levels, so we encourage visitors to regularly check our website before their visit for the latest guidelines. We ask that all visitors follow these safety measures to protect everyone’s health. Visitors should also be aware that our museums get crowded, especially during peak visitation times.

If Sick, Stay Home

We ask all visitors who are sick or feel unwell to please stay home. The Smithsonian is open 364 days a year and we look forward to welcoming you when you are healthy.

Visitors are encouraged to wash and sanitize hands frequently during their visit. Hand-sanitizing stations will be available throughout our facilities.


Masks are not currently required to visit. While not required, all visitors who feel more comfortable wearing a face mask during their visit are encouraged to do so.


For everyone’s safety, all visitors are required to pass through screening at the entrance to the museum. During the security process, you are greeted by one of our security personnel who conduct a thorough but speedy hand-check of all bags, briefcases, purses, strollers, and containers. All visitors are required to walk through a metal detector. Those visitors unable to go through the metal detector will be hand-screened with an electronic wand by security personnel.

Items Not Permitted in the Museum

The following items are not permitted in the museum at any time:


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