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It was the worst terror attack in American history. September 11, 2001, will always be remembered as the day when over 3,000 innocent people lost their lives. Everybody knows where they were and what they were doing when it happened. Everybody knows what was on their mind when they first saw the news on TV. Steffen was in New York City that day, which is just another reason the day takes on a special meaning for us.
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The 9/11 Memorial Museum opened to the public in 2014. The first entry was only permitted exclusively for family members of the victims and survivors.
Building the 9/11 Memorial Museum in New York
The completion of the underground premises, which includes more than 108,000 ft² spread over 7 floors, was delayed by more than 3 years. The construction exceeded its budget and ended up costing over 1 billion US dollars. Many people claimed that the admission fee back then of $24 (today it is $26) was inappropriate and that the owners had turned Ground Zero into a tourist attraction for profit.
As expected, the mere sight of the first exhibition piece brought back all my emotions about 9/11. The feelings of that day and time after the terror attack: complete bewilderment! Two giant furcated steel beams, which were part of the outer skeleton of the twin towers remind you of what once was. They were completely torn to pieces when the Twin Towers collapsed and have been pieced together like a puzzle. Visiting the 9/11 Museum in New York is something you should do during your stay in the city.
Why you should visit the 9/11 Memorial & Museum in New York City
The Museum tells the story of 9/11 through artifacts, imagery, personal stories, and interactive technology. You’ll pass a deformed Ladder Company 3 Truck of the NYC Fire Department, a charred elevator motor, one segment of radio and television antenna of the North Tower, the little stone stairs, just called the survivor’s staircase, box columns, street signs, bikes and strollers which have stood near the WTC caught up in rubble.
Just Revealed: “The Hunt For bin Laden” is the latest exhibition from the 9/11 Memorial & Museum. For the first time since the attacks, previously sealed evidence and artifacts will be displayed to the public.
The 9/11 Museum is interesting in a way that you have the chance to learn about the core exhibitions, special exhibitions like “The Place of Honor and Remembrance”, and rotating galleries in the Museum’s 110,000 square feet of space like “The Hunt for Bin Laden” which will be on display starting Nov 15, 2019.
A museum inside the museum
Behind a glass door, you’ll enter another museum inside of the 9/11 Memorial Museum. September 11, 2001, is what the signs say. Kids under 10 years are not allowed in this section of the museum. Kids 10 and older must be accompanied by an adult. Behind the glass doors, the museum tells the story of how the normalcy of a beautiful day was overtaken by shock as the United States came under attack.
Pictures of the towers right before the attacks are shown. Excerpts from live coverage right before the first aircraft were directed into the first tower are shown – for us this was hard to watch because the brutality of the events was once again displayed in all of its details.
This part of the museum is also more personal – you will hear phone calls from those who were inside the Twin Towers, listen to police radio recordings and see videos of firemen sitting in their trucks driving to the World Trade Center.
Every important minute of this morning is shown: people on the ground, people inside the two towers and those inside the planes and the Pentagon. The timeline brings the visitors to reflect repeatedly, exploring the many questions and challenges of a post 9/11 world. It is the most intense exhibition inside the museum. People cry, people grief in here. Photos are not allowed.
Living on in our Memories: The Room of the 2983 Photos
A big part of the museum is dedicated to those who left us. A quiet, contemplative space where you can honor and learn more about the 2983 people killed in the September 11 tragedy. This part of the museum is a small dark room, where you can sit down and listen to 2983 unique stories, one for each individual who passed away.
Finally another very powerful part of the museum: the slurry wall. This 65 ft high wall kept away the water from the Hudson River that streamed to the World Trade Center during and after its construction. Surprisingly, it survived the attacks. Seeing a real piece of this wall in the museum is a reminder of how much worse the attacks could have been if it wasn’t for this amazing feat of engineering.
Purchase your tickets ahead of time
Due to the popularity of the museum, it is a good idea to purchase your tickets in advance. You will find the best prices online. The 9/11 Memorial Museum is a true masterpiece. The visit is a very emotional experience and should definitely be a part of your trip to the Big Apple.
The 9/11 Memorial Museum has become an essential part of Ground Zero over the past years and will make sure that September 11, 2001, will never be forgotten.
9/11 Memorial Museum in New York Tours
In case you would like to experience a tour inside the 9/11 Museum and/or the memorial there are a lot of tours that we can recommend. They always come with admission to the museum and more benefits for you and your family.
9/11 Memorial & Museum Q&A
If you want to experience both the 9/11 Memorial and the Museum, you should plan 3 hours to see everything.
How much is the admission to the 9/11 Museum?
Tickets for the museum can be purchased up to six months in advance. All admission tickets include entry to all exhibitions. Admissions for the 9/11 Memorial & Museum start at $26 for adults, $20 for young adults (13-17 years), youth pay $15 and seniors, as well as college students, pay $20. U.S. veterans pay $18.
9/11 Memorial & Museum Hours
The museum is open to the public daily from Sunday to Thursday, 9 a.m. to 8 p.m. (6 p.m. last entry), Friday and Saturday, 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. (7 p.m. last entry)
Memorial, Open Daily
Monday to Sunday, 7:30 a.m. to 9 p.m.
Is there an audio guide at the 9/11 Memorial & Museum?
The 9/11 Memorial & Museum Audio Guide provides themed audio tours featuring stories from the day of 9/11 and the recovery at Ground Zero. It’s a great way to explore the museum on your own and not missing out on information. You will also discover the details of the Museum’s archaeological elements plus the architectural designs of the Memorial and the Museum.
Should I bring my kids to the 9/11 Memorial & Museum?
Even though this one of the best things to do in Manhattan, we would not recommend a visit with the children. For those who don’t want or can’t afford to pay 24 bucks for a ticket, it would be good to know that there is free admission for the 9/11 Memorial Museum on Tuesday evenings for New Yorkers with valid ID.
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I'm a true New York fan! Not only have I visited the city over 20 times but also have I spent several months here at a time. On this blog, I want to share everything I have learned and discovered, so you can have the best time in the greatest city in the world.