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“Interesting and worth the trip” 5 of 5 bubbles
Review of Western Antique Aeroplane & Automobile Museum

Western Antique Aeroplane & Automobile Museum
Ranked #3 of 69 things to do in Hood River
Certificate of Excellence
More attraction details
Attraction details
Owner description: The WAAAM Air & Auto Museum has one of the largest collections of still-flying antique aeroplanes and still-driving antique automobiles in the country. The items on display at this museum are not only full of history, they're full of LIFE! Enjoy over two acres of indoor exhibit space.
Los Angeles, California
Level Contributor
104 reviews
43 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 47 helpful votes
“Interesting and worth the trip”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 27 October 2013

This was such a great surprise. Small enough to get through if you're pressed for time, but if you have more time, it's a great way to spend the morning. Very informative and helpful staff and there were so many rare and interesting pieces here. Just loved it.

Visited October 2013
Helpful?
Thank livasida
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Stephanie H, Manager at Western Antique Aeroplane & Automobile Museum, responded to this review, 28 October 2013
Thanks for the review. We've got a wide variety of transportation history packed into the museum so we recommend a baseline of one and a half hours for a quick view of the museum. We've had some passionate visitors stay all day long but the average is usually between one and three hours.
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252 reviews from our community

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Date | Rating
  • English first
  • German first
  • Any
English first
Wenatchee, Washington
Level Contributor
338 reviews
73 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 121 helpful votes
“amazing collection of antique autos”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 22 October 2013

It was surprising to find such a comprehensive collection of antique cars in Hood River. It was an interesting place to visit for all ages, especially kids who need exposure to the history of the automobile.

Visited June 2013
Helpful?
Thank iluvta2
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Stephanie H, Manager at Western Antique Aeroplane & Automobile Museum, responded to this review, 23 October 2013
Thank you for reviewing. There are many different ways to inspire the younger generation with an appreciation of transportation history. Part of why WAAAM does our Second Saturday action programs is so that people who have never gotten a ride in an old car with a rumble seat or other type of vehicle can begin to build their own experiences with the past. Young or old, living history is something everyone can enjoy.
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This response is the subjective opinion of the management representative and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Cramlington
Level Contributor
13 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 8 helpful votes
“Fantastic place to visit for the car and plane enthusiast”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 21 October 2013

This is a tremendous place to visit if you are in the Oregon area. The people here are very friendly and welcoming, taking the time to explain the various planes and cars that are on show. The sheer number of cars and planes that are stuffed into these hangers is phenomenal, and mostly all are still flying and running. My favourite was the gull winged Mercedes on show, followed very closely by a Hudson Hawk

Visited October 2013
Helpful?
Thank ColandShaz
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Stephanie H, Manager at Western Antique Aeroplane & Automobile Museum, responded to this review, 23 October 2013
Thank you for reviewing. Our docents love to highlight key points of the collection to visitors to help inspire and connect people to early automotive and aviation history. It helps that this collection is still alive and driving/flying!
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Warminster, Pennsylvania
Level Contributor
17 reviews
6 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 10 helpful votes
“overwhelming”
4 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 19 October 2013

This museum (WAAAM for short) is PACKED FULL of beautifully restored vintage cars, mostly from the 1920's thru the late 1950's, and a terrific collection of mostly civil biplanes, and a few fairly exotic antique military aircraft. If you're ever in the Hood River area, this museum is a MUST for the vintage car or aircraft buff. I didn't mention the antique motorcycles. WAAAM has an outstanding collection of pre-WWII and WWII era motorcycles, which I found fascinating. That's the good.
Now for the less than good:
If you love to photograph the more exotic and/or significant restored automobiles and aircraft in the collection, as I like to do, you will find your experience pretty frustrating. WAAM consists of two good sized (adjoining) hangars filled with cars, aircraft, and other vintage artifacts. The lighting leaves much to be desired, and there are more cars than aircraft in the collection. So many, in fact, that space is at an absolute premium, forcing the curators to park rows of cars as closely as possible, even filling spaces between aircraft in the collection, so that getting excellent photos of any one particular exhibit is nearly impossible. The curators have also chosen to dominate the entire museum with signage unfortunately positioned to further frustrate the photographer's chances of getting a clear shot of the object of interest. I found my self reaching over the chain around the aircraft exhibits, moving the sign just out of my viewfinder sight, getting the best shot I could, and then moving the sign back to it's original location. In the second hangar, the curators had permitted a really obnoxiously painted Humvee to be parked adjacent a herd of superb vintage cars, which were blocking a clear view of a superbly restored WWII vintage biplane. The Humvee was absolutely appalling to look at, and would have been, even if it was parked with a field full of other Humvees. I don't regret the visit to WAAAM, but found it to be like the proverbial 2 lb. bag filled with 5 lb. too much (you fill in the blank), and a couple of the exhibits, like the Humvee I mentioned, should definitely not have been permitted on display because they marred the overall theme and image of the collection. I titled this review "overwhelming" because WAAAM simply is, and unfortunately, not in the best way. I would not recommend this museum to a family with young children, because I think young children would lose interest well before an enthusiastic parent had time to see and enjoy the entire collection. If your goals are to get quality photographic coverage of the more significant artifacts in the collection, you're going to find this a frustrating experience. If you're not a photographer, don't have to worry about keeping the kids entertained, have a passion for antique cars, motorcycles, aircraft, and such, and have at least half a day to spend, then very likely, you will have a much better experience than I did.

Visited September 2013
Helpful?
Thank jbenton56
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Stephanie H, Manager at Western Antique Aeroplane & Automobile Museum, responded to this review, 20 October 2013
Thank you for reviewing. WAAAM doubles as both a photographer's dream and a photographer's nightmare. We are hoping to resolve this issue with our new expansion which will be done by the end of November 2013. This will enable us to spread the collection out and become more accessible to everyone.
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Richland, Washington
Level Contributor
11 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 3 helpful votes
“What a great trip into history!”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed 11 October 2013

Most of the antiques are alive--running/working. We had fun riding in a very expensive car from the thirties. We were free to wander close to the exhibits and take our time doing it. There are marvelous cars, planes, and many other things from the past that no longer can be seen in any other places. It seems to bring our history alive. The parking is easy. The surroundings are attractive and support the displays. It is a fun place!

Visited November 2012
Helpful?
Thank Marlys M
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Stephanie H, Manager at Western Antique Aeroplane & Automobile Museum, responded to this review, 13 October 2013
Thank you for reviewing. People tent to connect with history better when it is presented in an interesting way. Part of what makes WAAAM so unique is being able to operate our airplanes and automobiles in a way that keeps history alive for future generations.
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