Updated July 21, 2020.
Did you know you can tour the Naval Academy in Annapolis? You can! We went up to Annapolis with my dad on his recent visit, and I collected some helpful tips for your visit, too! Check it out and don’t miss it on your next trip to Annapolis.
Know Before You Go
Because this is a government facility and a military base, there are a few extra things to know before you go. You definitely don’t want to go to the wrong place or make a colossal misstep!
There is more than one pedestrian entrance to the Naval Academy, but only one for tour-goers, so make sure you go to the right one! It is walkable from Annapolis’s historic downtown, but there is also parking onsite if necessary.
Armel-Leftwich Visitor Center
52 King George Street
Annapolis, MD 21402
Visitor Center Hours are 9:00am-5:00pm daily March-December. January and February hours are Mon-Fri 9:00am-4:00pm; Sat and Sun 9:00am-5:00pm.
Tour Times are hourly from 10:00am until 3:00pm and last approximately one hour and 15 minutes. The Visitor Center (and gift shop) remain open after the last tour of the day. Hours subject to change, so check their website before you go!
More here: 10 Things to Do in Annapolis
Walking tours $12 per adult, with discounts for children, seniors, military personnel, and more. This information is not on their website, and I actually thought the tours were free, so don’t be caught off guard! All proceeds from ticket sales and gift shop purchases go toward Brigade of Midshipmen activities.
Bring Your REAL ID
That’s right, you need an ID with the special star on the top. If your state does not require REAL ID yet, you can bring your passport or your current ID along with a second form of ID. For the list of acceptable forms of identification, click here.
Highlights of the Tour
The tour was 100% worthwhile, and all three of us (my dad, my husband, and I) recommend this tour! Here are some of the highlights.
The Athletic Facility
This was the first stop on our tour, but it was also maybe my favorite. I was not an athlete in high school or college, and I don’t really follow college sports (except Vanderbilt—Anchor Down!), but hearing about the training, the champions, the heroes, and the traditions was really interesting! The most impressive part was hearing about the swimming test that everyone has to pass: swimming 700 yards in under 30 minutes, in full uniform (with the exception of shoes). If you fail, you re-take the test until you pass.
All 4,000+ midshipmen (AKA students) live at Bancroft Hall all four years. It’s huge! And it’s gorgeous inside. You’ll see a sample room, the grand entrance, and the most beautiful ballroom.
Naval Academy Chapel and Crypt of John Paul Jones
Unfortunately for us, the Chapel and Crypt were both closed because they were setting up the biggest concert of the year—the Halloween concert! We did hear all about it outside, though, and it should certainly be open for your tour!
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