National Steinbeck Center, Salinas

#1 of 16 in Things to do in Salinas
Art Museum · Hidden Gem · History Museum
The National Steinbeck Center is a museum and memorial dedicated to the author John Steinbeck that is located at One Main Street in Salinas, California, the town where Steinbeck grew up.
The Steinbeck Center Foundation was founded in 1983; the center itself was finished and opened to the public on June 27, 1998. The center houses the largest collection of Steinbeck archives in the United States, with various exhibits on his body of work and philosophy. There is also a wing dedicated to the experiences of agricultural workers in the United States, a topic that Steinbeck was passionate about.
The Steinbeck Center has a focal point for activities to encourage learning about literature, human nature, history, agriculture, and the arts. Many educational programs are provided for the public, students and teachers, a multimedia experience for regional and national audiences.
Steinbeck's House is located near the museum.
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TripAdvisor traveler rating 4.5
383 reviews
  • Wonderful museum, simply blown away by it's presentation. Makes his literal works come to life. Went there to see the mural that was painted by my father in law some 20 years ago. Brought the...  more »
  • It is such a great place. So fascinating. You refresh your love of reading. It takes about and hour to two - depending how quickly and how much you read.  more »
  • Visited from Idaho, I am a huge Steinbeck fan and was so excited to see the exhibits, and it didn't disappoint. Even my 3 and 6 year old kids had a great time. My husband and I had a blast pouring over the used book section in the bookshop. The lady at the kiosk was incredibly friendly and informative, I'm so sorry I don't remember her name, but she was wonderful. This is a wonderful center and a must see for any Steinbeck fan.
  • Have wanted to go for a long time. I enjoyed the little film on Steinbeck's life and reading so many of his quotes and passages. Loved seeing the truck and trailer from Travels with Charley. Forced my daughter and her friend along. Although they insisted they were bored in the movie, they loved all the interactive features and I had a hard time getting them out in the end.

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