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Review Highlights
Your only chance to stand next to a nuclear bomb

I never knew it but here in California engineers were working on the casings for the Hiroshima atom... read more

Reviewed 1 week ago
Art C
Pasadena, California
good place to visit if you are an enthusiast

The museum sits on the china lake naval station in Ridgecrest Caifornia, access to the base is... read more

Reviewed 1 week ago
john h
Ridgecrest, California
Read all 39 reviews
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The largest naval research area in the U.S., 1,200 square miles of desert and mountains, allows a limited number of tours into Little Petroglyph Canyon.
  • Excellent55%
  • Very good28%
  • Average7%
  • Poor0%
  • Terrible10%
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Ridgecrest, CA
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Reviews (39)
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1 - 10 of 35 reviews

Reviewed 1 week ago

I never knew it but here in California engineers were working on the casings for the Hiroshima atom bombs. The last one they made is on display at this museum. I am sure that the trigger mechanism was disabled but just in case don't climb...More

Thank Art C
Reviewed 1 week ago

The museum sits on the china lake naval station in Ridgecrest Caifornia, access to the base is difficult, but if you do manage to get a pass the visit is interesting detailing many different acheivments of the base, lots of displays with interesting write up.

Thank john h
Reviewed 31 March 2017

Although an exceptional museum if a non US citizen you are unable to visit unless permission is granted months in advance. Nice to know our oldest ally is so accommodating.

1  Thank Peter F
Reviewed 8 December 2016

This is a large, sprawling expanse of desert wasteland; just perfect for military training and testing. The commissary and BX are good for the size of the installation and well stocked.

1  Thank Rick H
Reviewed 17 August 2016

You can not visit the China Lake Naval Weapons Center as it's a military installation. You may be able to visit the China Lake Museum located at the installation.

1  Thank MissDaisy
Reviewed 27 May 2016

I live in Ridgecrest, which is where all the rocket scientists and support staff for China Lake live. Ridgecrest mostly came to be because the government needed a place to design, test, and blow up ordinances out of sight, out of hearing, and out of...More

6  Thank ChinaLake1
Reviewed 11 April 2016

Well worth the hassle to visit, but I wonder why they can not move the museum off of the Naval Weapons property, into town. Would make the background check unnecessary, and create more access for the public.

2  Thank juliethegardener
Reviewed 7 March 2016

This museum offers the visitor a great deal of information on the accomplishments and development of weapons technology here at China Lake. This little gem of the desert loaded with photos, video and static displays. If you have an interest in weapons development, this museum...More

Thank Laura D
Reviewed 8 February 2016

China Lake NAWS is an amazing place to visit, important mission. The Navy s well kept secret. Don't miss the opportunity to visit.

Thank vrbrick
Reviewed 14 January 2016

If you come here to visit the museum you have to go to the visitor center (located off base) to obtain a badge first. The museum is small but very interesting.

2  Thank Becky B
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Questions & Answers
Pat S
3 April 2017|
Answer Show all 2 answers
Response from Peter F | Reviewed this property |
GD, L3 to name but two. There are no doubt many many more plus sub contractors. The museum itself is run by the navy through a dedicated band of volunteers. Great museum just ranging from difficult to near impossible for... More
16 April 2016|
Answer Show all 2 answers
Response from SNAFU23 | Reviewed this property |
They are located on the military reservation, so you must coordinate through the main museum in town. I don't think there is any other way.