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Smithsonian Associates - Entertaining, Informative, Eclectic, Insightful

Travel Programs


Take Me Out to the Ballgame: America’s Pastime in the Nation’s Capital

Thursday, August 11, 2022 - 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. ET

Spend a day with sports historian Fred Frommer that celebrates the glory of the game D.C. style. Warm up with visits to two Smithsonian museums featuring baseball-themed exhibitions before the big home run, a private tour of Nationals Park.


Destination Cities: St. Louis

Thursday, August 18, 2022 - 7:00 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. ET

From charming parks to neighborhoods that reflect a rich immigrant heritage to terrific beer and BBQ, St Louis, Missouri, has much to offer visitors. PBS television host Darley Newman leads a lively virtual tour of the city, uncovering the lesser-known backstories of its iconic landmarks and locally loved hidden gems—and plenty of reasons why St. Louis is an ideal destination.


Frank Lloyd Wright’s Buffalo

September 9 - 12, 2022, 8:00 a.m. to 9:30 p.m. ET

At the turn of the 20th century, architect Frank Lloyd Wright and his contemporaries turned Buffalo into a showcase for public and private architecture. A 4-day tour spotlights some of these innovative works with tour leader Bill Keene. (World Art History Certificate elective, 1 credit)


Theodore Roosevelt’s North Dakota: Badlands, Bison, and the Making of a Conservationist

September 17 - 21, 2022, 6:00 p.m. to 12:30 p.m. ET

The Badlands of North Dakota transformed Theodore Roosevelt over the course of more than three decades into the kind of vigorous outdoorsman he’d idealized as a youth—and that shaped his public image as president and a passionate conservationist. Experience those landscapes—filled with dramatic vistas, vividly colored canyons, and wandering herds of wild bison—on an extraordinary 5-day study tour.


Baltimore Neighborhoods: Mount Washington

Monday, September 19, 2022 - 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. ET

Hilly—but far from mountainous—Mount Washington is a residential neighborhood of choice and a destination within the city limits for a variety of activities. Arts journalist and former Baltimore resident Richard Selden continues his survey of Charm City neighborhoods with a virtual tour of Mount Washington, focusing on notable sites that define its history and character.


The Potomac Eagle: A Rail Ride Through the Trough

Sunday, October 16, 2022 - 9:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m. ET

Spend a day with Joe Nevin in the Shenandoah and South Branch valleys that focuses on regional and railroad history and offers some spectacular Appalachian scenery as well. The centerpiece is a 3-hour excursion on the diesel-powered Potomac Eagle, the perfect vantage point from which to take in the wild, wooded gorge locally known as the Trough.


Gold-Rush California

October 16 - 21, 2022, 6:00 p.m. to 11:00 a.m. ET

A sparkle of gold flashed in a river near Coloma, California, touching off a massive wave of gold seekers to California. The Gold Rush of 1849 forever altered California and the nation’s destiny. A 6-day tour visits the places where the adventure unfolded.


Cultural Heritage Sites of China

Saturday, October 22, 2022 - 9:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. ET

From the grand splendor of the Forbidden City and the Summer Palace to the serene beauty of the gardens of Suzhou and the grand tombs of Ming and Qing dynasty rulers, spend a day with art historian Robert DeCaroli as he introduces spectacular places in China that are UNESCO World Heritage Sites. (World Art History Certificate elective, 1 credit)


Dining on the Rails: A Moveable Feast

Friday, October 28, 2022 - 12:00 p.m. to 1:30 p.m. ET

Hungry railroad passengers prior to the Civil War had meager choices for meals. But once George Pullman’s dining cars came on the scene in the late 19th century, a bountiful new era of service began that often rivaled fine restaurants and hotel dining rooms. Railroad historian Joe Nevin traces the colorful evolution of dining on the rails between the beginning of commercial service in 1830 and the advent of Amtrak using examples from the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad, an Eastern pioneer of onboard services.


The Road to Nashville

November 6 - 10, 2022, 8:00 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. ET

Nashville is a 21st-century boom town, a cultural melting pot that attracts residents from across the nation and around the world. If the Ken Burns documentary Country Music sparked your appetite to learn more about the form’s roots and influences, this 5-day  tour offers the perfect way to do it.


Radio City Music Hall: Front and Center for the Christmas Spectacular

Thursday, December 8, 2022 - 6:45 a.m. to 11:00 p.m. ET

There’s no more iconic holiday performance in New York than Radio City Music Hall’s famed Christmas Spectacular. And there’s no better way to see the precision dancing of the Rockettes than from prime orchestra seats in the fabulous art deco theater where the show has been a tradition since 1933. A behind-the-scenes tour of the Music Hall adds to the experience.