50 Museums To Visit in America

50 Museums To Visit in America

BY Hilary Harty | January 16, 2024

Museums have come a long way since the first was established roughly 2,500 years ago. Gone are the days of slogging through tired galleries with dim lighting and carpeted floors while the attendant “guards” a dusty Thomas Kinkade-esque painting.

Yet while the art, relics, and stories exhibited often stretch back thousands of years, today’s museums are keenly aware of the changing times and offer demonstrations, hands-on workshops, and immersive experiences that go beyond an index card-sized exhibit label.

Below, we’ve compiled a list of our favorite museums in each state, a task that proved to be difficult in some places and easier in others. The museums we chose cover a broad range of topics including science, art, pop culture, history, music, and even cleanliness, but all are similar in that they focus on history and preservation. We’re already making plans for our next museum-focused road trip this Spring. Which museum will you visit first?

The Legacy Museum
#1
Montgomery, Alabama, USA-February 7, 2023: Close up of the Legacy Museum: From Enslavement to Mass Incarceration in the entertainment district of downtown on Court Street in Montgomery. Photo via Shutterstock.

Alabama: The Legacy Museum

The Legacy Museum, North Court Street, Montgomery, AL, USA

Montgomery is probably best recognized as being the center of the Civil Rights Movement in the 1960’s. The Legacy Museum: From Enslavement to Mass Incarceration is a good place for visitors to start their journey of unpacking the history of slavery in the United States. The museum, which opened in 2018, was founded by the Equal Justice Initiative, an organization led by Bryan Stevenson, author of the memoir Just Mercy: A Story of Justice and Redemption that was later adapted into a film. The Legacy Museum asks visitors to take a hard look at slavery and racism and details from the early days of slavery to mass incarceration today. Tickets for the museum are just $5 and will also gain you access to the National Memorial for Peace and Justice and soon, the Freedom Monument Sculpture Park, which is still under construction. 

Honorable Mention:

US Space and Rocket Center – Huntsville, Alabama

Do you recommend this?

+2
0
Rating: +2. From 2 votes.
Please wait…

Alaska Native Heritage Center
#2
Lake at the Native Heritage Center in Alaska. Photo via Shutterstock.

Alaska: Alaska Native Heritage Center

Alaska Native Heritage Center, Heritage Center Drive, Anchorage, Alaska, USA

Nearly 25 years after it first opened its doors, the Alaska Native Heritage Center continues to offer guests the most exhaustive collection of Alaska Native artifacts in the state. The downtown Anchorage campus educates visitors about Native cultural groups in the state with six life-sized, traditional Alaskan Native dwellings and history about the language, art and traditions of the groups. The Gathering Place showcases dance and music performances, storytelling and demonstrations while the Ch’k’iqadi Gallery has an expansive collection of Alaskan Native art on display that can be purchased. A ticket here will set you back $5 in the winter, but we recommend visiting in the summer and paying the $29 fee to experience the entire museum. 

Honorable Mention:

Anchorage Museum – Anchorage, Alaska

Do you recommend this?

+2
0
Rating: +2. From 2 votes.
Please wait…

Mountain sitting on a rock at the Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum.
#3
Mountain lion sitting on rock in Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum in Tucson, Arizona. Photo via Shutterstock.

Arizona: Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum

Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum, North Kinney Road, Tucson, Pima County, Arizona, USA

Planted just west of Tucson in the heart of cactus country, the Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum spans an impressive plot of desert terrain that sports a 98-acre zoo, aquarium, botanical garden, art gallery and natural history museum. At $29.95 per ticket, we think it’s one of the best bangs for your buck in the country – aside from free museums, of course. The museum dives deep into the history of ancient Arizona and the geological background of the region so that visitors can gain a better appreciation for the Sonoran Desert. There’s two miles of walking paths to follow through the vast gardens and the Warden Aquarium has both fresh and saltwater galleries. 

Honorable Mention:

Musical Instrument Museum

Do you recommend this?

+7
0
Rating: +7. From 7 votes.
Please wait…

Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art in Bentonville, Arkansas. Photo via Shutterstock.
#4
Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art in Bentonville, Arkansas. Photo via Shutterstock.

Arkansas: Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art

Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art, Museum Way, Bentonville, Arkansas, USA

Bentonville is home to a 120-acre art lover’s dream. Situated in Northwest Arkansas, the Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art first opened in 2011 and was designed by Moshe Safdie, architect and great uncle to Josh and Benny Safdie of “Uncut Gems” fame. The project was founded by Alice Walton, art collector and daughter of Sam Walton who famously founded Walmart, headquartered in Bentonville. Expect to see artists like Jackson Pollock, Andrew Wyeth, Chuck Close, Jasper Johns and Norman Rockwell in the permanent collection here alongside rotating exhibitions like “Annie Leibowitz at Work” and “Seeing One Another: New View on the Alfred Steiglitz Collection.”  As a bonus, admission to the museum is free, with special exhibitions costing just $12. When you finish up, head over to the Momentary, an accompanying contemporary art campus where you can see live music, gallery exhibitions and skyline views at the Tower Bar.

Honorable Mention:

Arkansas Museum of Fine Arts, Little Rock

Do you recommend this?

+5
0
Rating: +5. From 5 votes.
Please wait…

Aerial view of the Academy Museum of Motion Pictures in Los Angeles.
#5
Aerial view of the Academy Museum of Motion Pictures in Los Angeles. Photo via Shutterstock.

California: Academy Museum of Motion Pictures

Academy Museum of Motion Pictures, Wilshire Boulevard, Los Angeles, California, USA

As you walk the streets of Los Angeles, palm trees towering above and a layer of sunscreen glistening on your skin, escape the sun, if for but a moment, at the Academy Museum of Motion Pictures. Opened in Fall 2021, the museum is the first of its kind in the country and should be on the radar of film lovers. Expect to learn about the history and science of the film industry and view iconic props and costumes like Dorothy’s ruby slippers for “The Wizard of Oz,” Bela Lugosi’s cape from “Dracula,” and many more. The museum has also put a lot of thought into curating one-of-a-kind special exhibitions like “John Waters: Pope of Trash” and “Outside the Mainstream” which details Avant Garde and New Queer Cinema. Tickets for the museum are $25 and can be purchased online. 

Honorable Mention:

The Getty, Los Angeles

Do you recommend this?

+7
0
Rating: +7. From 7 votes.
Please wait…

Denver Art Museum
#6
Colorado, MAY 28, 2023 - Sunny exterior view of The Denver Art Museum. Photo via Shutterstock.

Colorado: Denver Art Museum

Denver Art Museum, West 14th Avenue Parkway, Denver, Colorado, USA

There’s a lot of reasons to visit Denver; between chugging IPAs and summiting the Rockies, carve out a day to spend perusing the galleries at the Denver Art Museum. Tickets are $27 to explore the collections at one of the largest museums between Chicago and the west coast. Located in Denver’s historic Civic Center, the museum houses a collection of Indigenous artworks as well exhibits that span from European and Asian art all the way to art of ancient America. While you’re there, check out the Frederic C. Hamilton Building, a glass and titanium-clad monument to architecture that stands four stories high. 

Honorable Mention:

United States Olympic & Paralympic Museum – Colorado Springs, CO

Do you recommend this?

+3
0
Rating: +3. From 3 votes.
Please wait…

Mystic Seaport Museum
#7
Mystic, Connecticut, United States: May 18th, 2019: Mystic Seaport Museum in Connecticut, it is the largest maritime museum in United States. Photo via Shutterstock.

Connecticut: Mystic Seaport Museum

Mystic Seaport Museum, Greenmanville Avenue, Mystic, CT, USA

Mystic Seaport Museum (or as it’s formally known, Mystic Seaport: The Museum of America and the Sea) is worth a trip to Connecticut if only for the niche brag of having visited the largest maritime museum in the country. First established in 1929, the museum is composed of more than 60 historic buildings spread across 19 acres in the small coastal town. Picture yourself touring the 19th century era seaport village and settling into old New England or taking a look at the massive collection of sail boats and ships at the shipyard, a collection that includes the last wooden whale ship in the world. General admission is $29 and also gains you access to exhibitions like “Spineless: A Glass Menagerie of Blaschka Marine Invertebrates.”

Honorable Mention:

Yale University Art Gallery – New Haven, Connecticut

Do you recommend this?

+6
0
Rating: +6. From 6 votes.
Please wait…

Winterthur Museum, Garden & Library
#8
Winterthur Museum, Garden & Library

Delaware: Winterthur Museum, Garden & Library

Winterthur Museum, Garden and Library, Kennett Pike, Winterthur, DE, USA

As the name suggests, Winterthur Museum, Garden & Library is a three-for-one that just so happens to have one of the finest collections of American furniture and artifacts in the country. Formerly the estate of Henry Francis du Pont, an antiques collector and horticulturist, the heir to a gunpowder fortune established the museum in 1951. The museum and estate cover 979 acres of land along with 60 acres of gardens lined with daffodils, azaleas and more. The museum is closed seasonally from January 8 to March 1, but tickets are usually $25 and we recommend visiting in the summer months so you can experience the grounds in all their splendor. There are over 90,000 objects displayed at the Winterthur Museum along with an impressive library with more than 87,000 rare books and 800,000 manuscripts. The building is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. 

Honorable Mention:

Air Mobility Command Museum – Dover Air Force Base, Delaware

Do you recommend this?

+2
0
Rating: +2. From 2 votes.
Please wait…

Exterior shot of Tommie Smith Statue at National Museum of African American History and Culture in Washington, D.C
#9
Tommie Smith Statue at National Museum of African American History and Culture in Washington, D.C. April 9, 2017. Photo via Shutterstock.

District of Columbia: National Museum of African American History and Culture

National Museum of African American History and Culture, Constitution Avenue Northwest, Washington, DC, USA

Let’s be honest: You’re probably already visiting Washington D.C. for the museums, but in the interest of saving time, the National Museum of African American History and Culture should be at the top of your list. Like nearly all Smithsonians, admission to this one is free, and gets you access to the largest museum dedicated to African-American history and culture on the planet. Keep an eye out for artifacts like Harriet Tubman’s prayer shawl and exhibitions that cover everything from Civil Rights, music and freedom, to Latinx and LGBTQ+ history. Rumor has it that there are more than 40,000 objects stored in the collection, but just a fraction of them are on display at the 10 story building. 

Honorable Mention:

Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum – Washington, DC

Do you recommend this?

+7
0
Rating: +7. From 7 votes.
Please wait…

The stairs at the Salvador Dali Museum.
#10
ST. PETE, FLORIDA - DECEMBER 29: Interior of Salvador Dali Museum December 29, 2011 in St. Pete, FL. The museum houses the largest collection of Dali works outside of Europe. Photo via Shutterstock.

Florida: Salvador Dali Museum

Salvador Dalí Museum, Dali Boulevard, St. Petersburg, FL, USA

It’s hard to imagine what kind of museum Salvador Dali would have erected for himself were he alive today, but the Dali Museum in Saint Petersburg, Florida is a pretty good guess. The current building opened in January 2011 and was designed by Yann Weymouth in Dali’s signature surrealistic style, with a glass entryway and skylight called “Enigma,” and 18-inch-thick concrete walls built to withstand Florida’s unpredictable hurricane season. Reynolds and Eleanor Morse originally opened the museum in Beachwood, Ohio back in 1971 with work from their private collection. Today, down on the Gulf Coast, their testament to Dali exhibits nearly 100 old paintings and 1,300 photos and objects. Tickets are $29 which is a small price to pay for access to the largest collection of Dali art in the world. For an additional $15 fee, visitors can experience “Dali Alive 360,” an immersive new experience in the brand new Dali Dome.

Honorable Mention:

Wynwood Walls – Miami, Florida

Do you recommend this?

+7
-1
Rating: +6. From 8 votes.
Please wait…

Interior shot at the National Center for Civil and Human Rights in Atlanta.
#11
Atlanta, Georgia, USA - January 18th, 2015 : Center of Civil and Human rights, Georgia. Photo via Shutterstock.

Georgia: National Center for Civil and Human Rights

National Center for Civil and Human Rights, Ivan Allen Junior Boulevard Northwest, Atlanta, GA, USA

Just steps from the Centennial Olympic Park in downtown, Atlanta’s National Center for Civil and Human Rights takes a closer look at the roots of the Civil Rights Movement in the United States and the broader quest for human rights worldwide. Stand-out exhibits here include “Voice to the Voiceless: Morehouse College Martin Luther King Jr. Collection,” a trove of documents and artifacts of the late activist, and a lunch counter sit-in simulation in a mock-up of what lunch establishments looked like in the sixties. The museum is housed in a 90,000 square foot architectural stunner designed by Philip Freelon and tickets for adults are $19.99.

Honorable Mention:

World of Coca-Cola – Atlanta, Georgia

Do you recommend this?

+1
-2
Rating: -1. From 3 votes.
Please wait…

Bernice Pauahi Bishop Museum
#12
Honolulu, Hawaii, USA - April 14, 2019: The Bernice Pauahi Bishop Museum houses an extensive collection of Hawaiian and pacific island objects and artifacts. Photo via Shutterstock.

Hawai’i: Bernice Pauahi Bishop Museum

Bishop Museum, Bernice Street, Honolulu, HI, USA

Sure, you could come to Hawaii just for beaches, Mai Tais and poke, but you’d miss out on so much of the culture and history of paradise on earth. That’s where the Bernice Pauahi Bishop Museum comes in. Called the Bishop Museum for short, this institution was founded in 1889 by Charles Reed Bishop and contains the world’s largest collection of Polynesian objects and natural history specimens. Situated in the historic Kalihi district in Honolulu, the museum covers a broad range of topics, including Polynesian wayfinding, and holds the third largest insect collection in the country. Admission is $28.95 for adults and for an extra fee, you can visit the onsite Planetarium.

Honorable Mention:

‘Imiloa Astronomy Center of Hawai’i – Big Island, Hawaii

Do you recommend this?

+2
0
Rating: +2. From 2 votes.
Please wait…

Museum of Clean
#13
Pocatello, Idaho, USA - February 3, 2018 : Display of cleaning products in the Museum of Clean. Photo via Shutterstock.

Idaho: Museum of Clean

Museum of Clean, South 2nd Avenue, Pocatello, ID, USA

Neat freaks, unite! Your dream destination awaits in the modest town of Pocatello, Idaho at the Museum of Clean, a 75,000 square foot space where you can learn what it really means to be clean. Virgo jokes aside, the museum is less a comparison of Fabuloso and Mr. Clean, and more a deep dive into the philosophy of what it means to live a life of cleanliness. The museum was founded by cleanliness-devotee and author Don Aslett in 2011 whose chief aim is to “…expand the scope of clean into areas like clean homes, clean minds, clean language, clean community, and a clean world.” You’ll see exhibits like the “Toilet Collection,” “Library of Clean,” “Orchestra of Clean,” and the ever-popular “Vacuum Collection” which showcases the world’s first vacuum cleaner – the only one in existence. Admission for adults is a clean $10 and grants you access to all of the dust-free galleries.

Honorable Mention:

Idaho Potato Museum – Blackfoot, Idaho

Do you recommend this?

0
0
No votes yet.
Please wait…

The Art Institute of Chicago
#14
CHICAGO, USA - September 15 2023: People visiting the Art Institute of Chicago. Photo via Shutterstock.

Illinois: The Art Institute of Chicago

The Art Institute of Chicago, South Michigan Avenue, Chicago, IL, USA

In a city where phenomenal museums are in abundance, The Art Institute of Chicago stands out for its preservation of almost 300,000 works of art as well as its commitment to showcasing over 30 temporary exhibitions annually. Just a hop, skip and jump away from the “Cloud Gate” sculpture in Grant Park, the museum was founded in 1879 and remains one of the largest art museums on the planet. If you’re seen “Ferris Bueller’s Day Off,” you’ll likely remember the scene filmed here where Cameron (played by Alan Ruck) gazes intensely at George Seurat’s “A Sunday on La Grande Jatte” as it gazes back at him. This is the place to come if you want to see paintings by Pablo Picasso, Edward Hopper, Rene Magritte, Henri Matisse, Francisco Goya, Pierre-Auguste Renoir, Wassily Kandinsky and so many more. You could easily spend days getting lost here, so we recommend putting aside at least one day to take in The Art Institute’s halls. General admission is $32 for adults, which is a bargain considering the sheer volume of art here.

Honorable Mention:

Museum of Science and History – Chicago, Ill.

Do you recommend this?

+9
0
Rating: +9. From 9 votes.
Please wait…

The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis
#15
Indianapolis, IN, USA June 3 A dinosaur "breaks out" of the wall at the Indianapolis Children's Museum in Indianapolis, Indiana. Photo via Shutterstock.

Indiana: The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis

The Children's Museum of Indianapolis, North Meridian Street, Indianapolis, IN, USA

The Children’s Museum of Indianapolis is the largest children’s museum in the world. At a staggering 472,900 square feet, the museum covers five floors and contains more than 130,000 objects in its collection, including an original Norman Rockwell painting, a drum played by the youngest drummer boy in the Civil War and a Tyrannosaurus rex specimen. A big draw here is “Dinosphere: Now You’re in Their World,” an immersive experience with four sub-exhibits including “Giants of the Jurassic” and “Monsters of the Mesozoic Seas.” Elsewhere, the museum provides kids with hands-on opportunities to learn about history and science and, in the summer, participate in sports outdoors. Admission starts at $24 for adults and $19 for kids under the age of 18, and gets you into indoor exhibits, daily shows and outdoor exhibits seasonally.

Honorable Mention:

Studebaker National Museum – South Bend, IN.

Do you recommend this?

0
0
No votes yet.
Please wait…

Union Pacific Railroad Museum
#16
COUNCIL BLUFFS, IA -20 APR 2019- View of the Union Pacific Railroad Museum (UPRR), a train museum in Council Bluffs across from Omaha, Nebraska, United States. Photo via Shutterstock.

Iowa: Union Pacific Railroad Museum

Union Pacific Railroad Museum, Pearl Street, Council Bluffs, IA, USA

Just 11 minutes from Omaha near the Iowa border, Council Bluffs is a modest city with a historic museum honoring the legacy of Union Pacific Railroad’s founder, President Abraham Lincoln, and the evolution of the American railroad system. There’s photos, objects and railroad accouterments here spanning a 150-year period and viewable in exhibits like “The Lincoln Collection” and “Building America.” The museum is located in the Council Bluffs Carnegie Library building and first opened in 1905, just 40 years after President Lincoln was assassinated. Two of our favorite things about visiting this museum are the free admission and the free history tours each Saturday at 1:30 p.m.

Honorable Mention:

Figge Art Museum – Davenport, Iowa

Do you recommend this?

+1
0
Rating: +1. From 1 vote.
Please wait…

Museum of World Treasures
#17
SEP 16 2023 - Interior view of the Museum of World Treasures in Kansas. Photo by Shutterstock.

Kansas: Museum of World Treasures

Museum of World Treasures, East 1st Street North, Wichita, KS, USA

Too rarely does Kansas receive the acknowledgment it deserves, aside from when we’re watching Dorothy tap her ruby red slippers together in “The Wizard of Oz.” But while the Sunflower State may lack the food scene of New Orleans or the arts culture of New York City, it does have one of our favorite world history museums. Wichita’s Museum of World Treasures has a fossil gallery with dinosaur specimens,  artifacts from the Civil War, World Wars I and II, and the Vietnam War, and a Mesopotamia exhibit, among 18 others. Tickets for adults are $9.95, while children cost just $7.95.

Honorable Mention:

Exploration Place – Wichita, Kansas

Do you recommend this?

+1
0
Rating: +1. From 1 vote.
Please wait…

Louisville Slugger Museum & Factory
#18
LOUISVILLE, KY, USA - JULY 23, 2018: The Louisville Slugger Museum & Factory with a dramatic blue sky and clouds in the background. Photo via Shutterstock.

Kentucky: Louisville Slugger Museum & Factory

Louisville Slugger Museum & Factory, West Main Street, Louisville, KY, USA

If you’re in the mood to learn about the history of America’s favorite baseball bat and take in oversized replica sports equipment that might double as a plumbing vent, Louisville’s your place. Standing 120-feet high, the world’s largest baseball bat leans against the facade of the Louisville Slugger Museum & Factory, a place where you’ll learn about the history of baseball and the art of hitting, and embark on a factory tour to watch baseball bat production. The museum also has a big glove named “Play Ball,” a 17-ton baseball mitt made out of genuine Kentucky limestone. Admission costs $22 for adults and includes access to exhibits like “Black Ballplayers” and the Bat Vault where you can see over 3,000 different bat models. 

Honorable Mention:

National Corvette Museum – Bowling Green, Kentucky

Do you recommend this?

+3
0
Rating: +3. From 3 votes.
Please wait…

The National WWII Museum
#19
Louisiana, DEC 24 2021 - Sunny view of The National WWII Museum. Photo via Shutterstock.

Louisiana: The National WWII Museum

The National WWII Museum, Magazine Street, New Orleans, LA, USA

From strolling through the French Quarter, to eating at any one of the historic restaurants; from dancing the night away in a hot jazz club to sinking your teeth into piping hot beignets the next morning, a museum probably isn’t the first thing on your to-do list when you vacation New Orleans. But, in the middle of your New Orleans festivities, we recommend swinging by The National WWII Museum for a bit of military history. The museum first opened in 2000 and was designated as America’s official National WWII Museum by Congress in 2004. There’s a robust assortment of World War II memorabilia through exhibits like “The D-Day Invasion of Normandy,” “Road to Berlin,” “The Arsenal of Democracy,” and more. General admission starts at $25 for adults and increases based on add-ons like the “Beyond All Boundaries 4D Experience.”

Honorable Mention:

Vermilionville – Lafayette, Louisiana

Do you recommend this?

+4
0
Rating: +4. From 4 votes.
Please wait…

Maine Maritime Museum
#20
BATH, ME -8 AUG 2020- Exterior view of the Maine Maritime Museum with exhibits about the maritime heritage and culture of Maine in Bath, Maine, United States. Photo via Shutterstock.

Maine: Maine Maritime Museum

Maine Maritime Museum, Washington Street, Bath, ME, USA

Maine has all of those lighthouses for a reason. Find out why at The Maine Maritime Museum, which teaches you about Maine’s historic maritime traditions and its place in the industry on a global scale. Located  on the banks of the Kennebec River in Bath, the museum has over 20,000 artifacts and a research library full of ship plans and photographs that would make any ship-lover’s eyes pop. Coolest of all, the museum operates a historic shipyard that once built some of the largest commercial wooden sailboats. And if you traveled to Maine not for the ships, but for the uber-romantic, salt-sprayed lighthouses, hop on one of the museum’s lighthouse cruises to get your fill. A ticket costs $20 and includes access to the central Maritime History Building along with surrounding exhibits in smaller structures like “Lobstering & the Maine Coast” and “Snow Squall: An American Clipper.” Cruises are ticketed separately. 

Honorable Mention:

Maine Discovery Museum – Bangor, Maine

Do you recommend this?

+5
0
Rating: +5. From 5 votes.
Please wait…

American Visionary Art Museum
#21
American Visionary Art Museum. Photo via Shutterstock.

Maryland: American Visionary Art Museum

American Visionary Art Museum, Key Highway, Baltimore, MD, USA

You don’t need to be a highfalutin art connoisseur to absorb the uniqueness of the American Visionary Art Museum, though if you are one, you’re welcome here, too. Baltimore’s American Visionary Art Museum is our favorite non-conformist museum, choosing to amplify the works of self-taught artists in lieu of the masters. Look out for the poetically unusual Outsider Art along with a story about the artist who created it. Tickets for adults cost $16 and include entry to rotating exhibits, the permanent collection, and the mega-exhibition “If You Build It, They Will Come” on view until September 1. Should you tire of the zany and bizarre exhibits like “Bling Universe,” make sure to visit Sideshow, the museum gift shop, once described by freaky filmmaker and hometown hero, John Waters, as “…the best museum gift shop you’ve ever been to in your life.”

Honorable Mention:

Edgar Allan Poe House & Museum – Baltimore, Maryland

Do you recommend this?

+2
0
Rating: +2. From 2 votes.
Please wait…

Museum of Fine Arts
#22
Boston, Massachusetts - July 31, 2018: Boston Museum of Fine Art on a sunny day. The Museum of Fine Arts in Boston, Massachusetts, is the fourth largest museum in the United States. Photo via Shutterstock.

Massachusetts: Museum of Fine Arts

Museum of Fine Arts, Boston, Huntington Avenue, Boston, MA, USA

As the 20th-largest art museum in the world, the Museum of Fine Arts sees more than 1.2 million visitors annually and contains an excess of 450,000 works of art, including a selection of French Impressionist and Post-Impressionist pieces by artists like Claude Monet, Paul Gauguin, Edgar Degas and more. You’ll also find American art by painters like John Singer Sargent and the most comprehensive collection of Japanese artworks under one roof outside of Japan. General admission starts at $27 for adults and includes access to the permanent collection along with selection exhibitions.

Honorable Mention:

Isabella Stewart Gardner Museum – Boston, Massachusetts

Do you recommend this?

+7
0
Rating: +7. From 7 votes.
Please wait…

Detroit Institute of Arts
#23
DETROIT, MI -10 NOV 2018- View of the landmark Detroit Institute of Arts (DIA), a major American art museum located in Midtown Detroit, Michigan. Photo via Shutterstock.

Michigan: Detroit Institute of Arts

Detroit Institute of Arts, Woodward Avenue, Detroit, MI, USA

Housed in a Beaux Arts building designed by Paul Philippe Cret, the Detroit Institute of Arts is spread across 658,000 square feet and has over 100 galleries, making it one of the largest art museums in the United States. The Motor City museum has earned the nickname “Temple of Art,” because of its staggering number of works, which include Islamic art, performing arts, European sculpture and decorative arts. Tickets for adult non-members are $21.50 and with it, you can see “Self Portrait” by Vincent Van Gogh and Diego Rivera’s Detroit Industry frescoes. The museum also has a sizable amount of African American and Native American art as part of its permanent collection. 

Honorable Mention:

Henry Ford Museum of American Innovation – Dearborn, Michigan

Do you recommend this?

+3
0
Rating: +3. From 3 votes.
Please wait…

Minneapolis Institute of Art
#24
Minneapolis, MN/USA. June 17, 2017. The Eros sculpture outside of the Minneapolis Institute of Art. It was sculpted by Igor Mitoraj and purchased as part of the 100th anniversary of the museum. Photo via Shutterstock.

Minnesota: Minneapolis Institute of Art

Minneapolis Institute of Art, 3rd Avenue South, Minneapolis, MN, USA

If you roll up to the Minneapolis Institute of Art to view the collection of over 100,000 works of art, you’ll be pleasantly surprised to find that admission is free – an anomaly for an art museum of this size. The museum is celebrated for its seven curatorial areas highlighting works from cultures spanning six continents including “Arts of Africa & the Americas” and “Asian Art;” and the featured exhibitions are nothing to sneeze at either.  Temporary exhibitions include “Latin American Art,” “Reimagining Native/American Art,” and “The Staff Art Show,” which hangs the work of artists employed by the museum.

Honorable Mention:

Paisley Park Museum – Chanhassen, Minnesota

Do you recommend this?

0
0
No votes yet.
Please wait…

Mississippi Civil Rights Museum
#25
Memphis, USA – The Lorraine Motel as part of the complex of the National Civil Rights Museum in Memphis, Tennessee. Photo via Shutterstock.

Mississippi: Mississippi Civil Rights Museum

Mississippi Civil Rights Museum, North Street, Jackson, MS, USA

The Mississippi Civil Rights Museum is the country’s first state-funded Civil Rights museum. Similar to The Legacy Museum in Alabama, Jackson’s Civil Rights Museum asks visitors to consider the painful reality of the United States’s history as it relates to the Civil Rights Movement. The museum opened its doors in 2017 and is interconnected with the Museum of Mississippi History next door, earning the complex the name Two Mississippi Museums. Admission is $15 for adults 23 and older and grants access to both museums and special exhibitions, though if you visit on a Sunday, admission is free. 

Honorable Mention:

Ohr-O’Keefe Museum of Art – Biloxi, Mississippi

Do you recommend this?

+1
0
Rating: +1. From 1 vote.
Please wait…

Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art
#26
Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art. Photo via Shutterstock.

Missouri: Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art

The Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art, Oak Street, Kansas City, MO, USA

Kansas City has made a name for itself in the art scene with the help of the Kansas City Art Institute and a number of dynamic art spaces around town. The Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art has proven to be a darling in the city’s art scene thanks to its detailed, global collection with an eye toward Asian art. Nelson-Atkins was first established in 1933, though the addition of the ultra-modern Bloch Building didn’t open to the public until 2005 – and it’s an architectural masterpiece. After you’ve finished marveling at the building, make sure to check out temporary exhibitions like “Monet and his Modern Legacy,” open now through March 10, 2024, and “Cities Are for People: Street Photography, 1945-1970,” which is currently on display until February 25, 2024. Don’t worry about bringing correct change, because admission here is free.

Honorable Mention:

City Museum – St. Louis, Missouri

Do you recommend this?

+3
0
Rating: +3. From 3 votes.
Please wait…

Museum of the Rockies
#27
Bozeman, Montana: September 25, 2023: Exterior of the Museum of the Rockies in the state of Montana. Photo via Shutterstock.

Montana: Museum of the Rockies

Museum of the Rockies, West Kagy Boulevard, Bozeman, MT, USA

It’s hard to believe that the best museum in Montana isn’t one dedicated to cowboys and a certain red-boxed cigarette, but the Museum of the Rockies manages to exhibit something even better: dinosaur skeletons. The Smithsonian affiliate is known for having the biggest collection of North American dinosaur fossils in the United States, as well the largest Tyrannosaurus skull ever discovered in the popular Siebel Dinosaur Complex. Elsewhere, the museum has galleries dedicated to the history and land formations of Yellowstone, archaeological exhibits and the “Enduring Peoples” exhibit, which explores the traditions of Native Americans in the Northern Plains. General admission for adults is $20 – and just $3 if you want to catch a Planetarium show.

Honorable Mention:

C.M. Russell Museum – Great Falls, Montana

Do you recommend this?

+1
0
Rating: +1. From 1 vote.
Please wait…

Nebraska: The Durham Museum
#28
Nebraska: The Durham Museum

Nebraska: The Durham Museum

The Durham Museum, South 10th Street, Omaha, NE, USA

You’re here to take in Omaha’s history under the high ceilings and Art Deco architecture of the historic Union Station. This Smithsonian affiliate was established in 1975 as the Western Heritage Museum, just four years after the Union Pacific Railroad closed the station. Now, you can walk through replicas of homes that populated the prairie in eras past, including a Native American lodge and a worker’s cottage, explore more than a few train cars, and drink old-timey ice cream floats at the on-site soda fountain and candy shop. The Durham Museum also has partnerships with the Library of Congress and the National Archives which has helped to beef up its collections of archival materials, photographs, and historic objects. Prepare to spend $15 for access to permanent exhibits that include a replica grocer circa 1915 from Omaha’s Dundee neighborhood, and much more. 

Honorable Mention:

Omaha Children’s Museum – Omaha, Nebraska

Do you recommend this?

+2
0
Rating: +2. From 2 votes.
Please wait…

The Neon Museum
#29
View of The Neon Museum. One of the most unique museums, located in the heart of Las Vegas, Nevada. Photo via Shutterstock.

Nevada: The Neon Museum

The Neon Museum, llc, Las Vegas Boulevard North, Las Vegas, NV, USA

The Wild West has more than tumbleweeds, stand-offs and gold galore. It’s also the home of casinos, extravagant buffets, and having your wedding officiated by a late-stage Elvis impersonator. When you need a break from gambling, boozing, and all the revelry that entails, head to the Neon Museum and explore their smorgasbord of retired casino, restaurant, bar and hotel neon signage. The museum opened in 1996 and since then, has been collecting, preserving, and exhibiting these one-of-a-kind pieces of art on their 2.62 acre lot. Admission fees range from $22 to $45 depending on the time of day, but we recommend visiting at night when you can visit the Main Boneyard and see over 250 unrestored signs illuminated.

Honorable Mention:

Burlesque Hall of Fame – Las Vegas, Nevada

Do you recommend this?

+2
0
Rating: +2. From 2 votes.
Please wait…

View of the Strawbery Banke Museum
#30
PORTSMOUTH, NH –6 AUG 2020- View of the Strawbery Banke Museum, an outdoor history museum located in the South End historic district of Portsmouth, New Hampshire, United States. Photo via Shutterstock.

New Hampshire: Strawbery Banke Museum

Strawbery Banke Museum, Hancock Street, Portsmouth, NH, USA

Strawbery Banke isn’t your typical museum sandwiched by a café and gift shop selling keepsake keychains. The museum operates as a seasonal outdoor museum from May 1 through October 31 in the historic South End district of Portsmouth – the oldest neighborhood in the state settled by Europeans. Instead of a modern 100,000 square foot complex, the museum is spread across a 10-acre campus in 37 restored buildings built between the 1600 and 1800’s. Think perfectly preserved Colonial, Federal, and Georgian structures – 17 of which are open to the public – where costumed role-players and interpreters educated visitors on the neighborhood’s earliest inhabitants through cooking, coopering, and weaving demonstrations. Admission at the Strawbery Banke Museum is $23 during the season, and there is the option to ice skate at the museum during the winter.

Honorable Mention:

Currier Museum of Art – Manchester, New Hampshire

Do you recommend this?

+3
0
Rating: +3. From 3 votes.
Please wait…

Ellis Island Immigration Museum.
#31
Ellis Island Immigration Museum. Photo via Shutterstock.

New Jersey: Ellis Island Immigration Museum

Ellis Island National Museum of Immigration, Ellis Island Bridge, Jersey City, NJ, USA

The story of how nearly 12 million immigrants were processed upon arrival to the United States between 1892 and 1954 fascinates us. If you don’t really care about that, there’s still a lot to discover at the Ellis Island Immigration Museum. Less than half-a-mile away from Lady Liberty, the museum is a memorial to and educational resource for the small island that helped turn the U.S. into a melting pot. You’ll pay a $24.80 admission fee and step aboard the ferry cruise at Liberty State Park, which grants you access to both Ellis Island and the Statue of Liberty monument. The museum is a love letter to American immigrants and tells their stories through a collection of historic documents, photographs and trinkets. You can tour the Great Hall, baggage room and dormitories, and if you pay roughly $50 more, you can take a 90-minute hard hat tour of the unrestored Ellis Island Immigrant Hospital Complex.

Honorable Mention:

Old Barracks Museum – Trenton, New Jersey

Do you recommend this?

+6
0
Rating: +6. From 6 votes.
Please wait…

Georgia O’Keeffe Museum
#32
Georgia O’Keeffe Museum. Photo via Shutterstock.

New Mexico: Georgia O’Keeffe Museum

Georgia O'Keeffe Museum, Johnson Street, Santa Fe, NM, USA

The love affair between Georgia O’Keeffe and New Mexico cannot be understated. Look at any of the prolific artist’s paintings from 1929 onward and you’ll see the influence that the desert landscape and indigenous traditions had on her work. It’s therefore no surprise that the Georgia O’Keeffe Museum was founded just 11 years after the “Mother of American Modernism” passed and today, remains a sacred monument where artists from around the globe flock. You’re here for the classics, like O’Keeffe’s large-scale floral paintings that at times seem more like an anatomy lesson, along with the artist’s personal treasures and photographs, as well as more than 3,000 pieces of art. General admission here is $22, though for an extra $38, you can tour O’Keeffe’s studio and home in Abiquiu, New Mexico, 52-miles north of Santa Fe.

Honorable Mention:

Museum of Indian Arts – Santa Fe, New Mexico

Do you recommend this?

+4
0
Rating: +4. From 4 votes.
Please wait…

The Metropolitan Museum of Art
#33
The Metropolitan Museum of Art. Photo via Shutterstock.

New York: The Metropolitan Museum of Art

The Metropolitan Museum of Art, 5th Avenue, New York, NY, USA

With over two million artifacts spread across 17 curatorial departments, The Metropolitan Museum of Art is the largest art museum in the country and one of the largest on the planet. Located in a Beaux Arts building on Manhattan’s Upper East Side, the Met — as it’s often called — first opened in 1870 and sees more than seven million visitors annually. If you’re an art enthusiast, we recommend splitting your visit across two days so you have ample time to absorb the extensive amount of American, Byzantine, medieval, Islamic and ancient Egyptian art. General admission is $30 for adults, but residents of New York may pay what they wish. Don’t forget to head to The Cloisters, a smaller collection of the Met’s medieval European artifacts in Washington Heights. 

Honorable Mention:

Whitney Museum of American Art – New York, New York

Do you recommend this?

+12
0
Rating: +12. From 12 votes.
Please wait…

Biltmore Estate
#34
The Biltmont Estate in Asheville, North Carolina. Photo via Shutterstock.

North Carolina: Biltmore Estate

Biltmore Estate, Lodge Street, Asheville, NC, USA

The Biltmore Estate is what would happen if Antonio Vivaldi’s “Spring” decided it’d rather be an 8,000-acre estate than an iconic violin concerti. Nestled in the Blue Ridge Mountains, the Gilded age mansion is the largest privately owned home in the United States and was formerly owned by George Vanderbilt. Today, you can tour the idyllic 250-room home and grounds, take a leisurely carriage ride and visit the estate winery all before checking into the four-star inn on the property. Beginning March 25  the Biltmore will play host to the special exhibition “Chihuly at Biltmore” where Seattle-based artist Dale Chihuly’s beautiful glass sculptures will be displayed. Tickets will begin at $80.

Honorable Mention:

North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences – Raleigh, North Carolina

Do you recommend this?

+4
-2
Rating: +2. From 6 votes.
Please wait…

National Buffalo Museum
#35
JAMESTOWN, NORTH DAKOTA - 3 OCT 2021: Sign for the National Buffalo Museum in Frontier Village. Photo via Shutterstock.

North Dakota: National Buffalo Museum

National Buffalo Museum, 17th Street Southeast, Jamestown, ND, USA

A trip to Jamestown, N.D.’s National Buffalo Museum is incomplete without taking a gander at the 54-ton statue of an American bison outside. The anatomically correct behemoth is so big that the city of Jamestown got the nickname “The Buffalo City.” The museum’s mission is to share the history of the American bison and to educate visitors about the economic and ecological importance of the animal. Alongside exhibits like the National Buffalo Foundation’s “Buffalo Hall of Fame,” and “North Dakota Pottery,” there’s information about Bison restoration advocacy and a living exhibit of two bison herds located on either side of the interstate. We think tickets are a steal at just $6 a pop.

Honorable Mention:

North Dakota Cowboy Hall of Fame – Medora, North Dakota

Do you recommend this?

+3
0
Rating: +3. From 3 votes.
Please wait…

Rock and Roll Hall of Fame
#36
Cleveland, USA - October 21, 2018 - Interior of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame on the Lake Erie shore in Cleveland, Ohio.

Ohio: Rock & Roll Hall of Fame

Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, East 9th Street, Cleveland, OH, USA

More than nine million people visit the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame each year, making it one of the most popular and culturally significant tourist attractions in Ohio. The 150,000-square-foot building designed by architect I.M. Pei consists of massive glass pyramidal structures that hover over the shores of Lake Erie. Entry to the museum is $35 for adults and will gain you access to floors of music-related memorabilia in permanent historical exhibits like “Pioneers of Rock,” “Hip Hop at 50: Holla If Ya Hear Me,” and the Signature Gallery where you can see all of the inductees in the hall of fame. Check the website and calendar before you go, as films, lectures and concerts occur regularly.

Honorable Mention:

Cleveland Museum of Art – Cleveland, Ohio

Do you recommend this?

+5
-1
Rating: +4. From 6 votes.
Please wait…

American Banjo Museum
#37
Oklahoma, Feb. 13, 2022 - Closeup shot of beautiful banjo in the American Banjo Museum. Photo via Shutterstock.

Oklahoma: American Banjo Museum

American Banjo Museum, East Sheridan Avenue, Oklahoma City, OK, USA

The American Banjo Museum is the only place in the world dedicated solely to honoring the humble banjo – an instrument often overshadowed by more conventional strings like the acoustic guitar. This museum was founded in 1988 in Guthrie, Okla. before establishing itself in Oklahoma City in 2009. With more than 400 instruments, the museum maintains the largest collection of banjos on display in the world. You’ll learn about the role the banjo played in the American music scene all while exploring two floors of memorabilia, photographs, and four and five string banjos. Admission is $8.

Honorable Mention:

Chickasaw Cultural Center – Sulphur, Oklahoma

Do you recommend this?

+1
-1
Rating: 0. From 2 votes.
Please wait…

Portland Art Museum
#38
Portland, Oregon, United States - Dec 22, 2017 : Facade of the landmark Portland Art Museum. It is the oldest art museum on the West Coast of the United States. Photo via Shutterstock.

Oregon: Portland Art Museum

Portland Art Museum, Southwest Park Avenue, Portland, OR, USA

“Portlandia” may have ended, but the avant-garde is alive and well at the Portland Art Museum. Founded in 1892, the museum is one of the oldest in the Pacific Northwest and focuses on preserving art of yesteryear while promoting up-and-coming artists. Once you’ve paid the $25 admission fee, check out permanent collections unique to the region like “Native American Art” and “Northwest Art” before viewing paintings by famed masters like Vincent van Gogh, Diego Rivera, Paul Cezanne and many more. Special exhibit “Black Artists of Oregon” is on view until March 17 and “Psychedelic Rock Posters and Fashion of the 1960s” is set to open in September.

Honorable Mention:

Oregon Museum of Science and Industry – Portland, Oregon

Do you recommend this?

+4
0
Rating: +4. From 4 votes.
Please wait…

Philadelphia Museum of Art
#39
Philadelphia Museum of Art. Photo via Shutterstock.

Pennsylvania: Philadelphia Museum of Art

Philadelphia Museum of Art, Benjamin Franklin Parkway, Philadelphia, PA, USA

You’re probably here to run up the unmissable “Rocky” stairs like Stallone, but beyond the bout de cardio lies the real treasure of the Philadelphia Museum of Art. Keep your Hokas on for support as you traverse the 200 galleries and view more than 240,000 works of art. Tickets here are just $30, which is a bargain considering the museum’s centuries-old works by artists like Edouard Manet, Peter Paul Rubens, Marcel Duchamp, Juan Gris and many more. Notable pieces include Grace Kelly’s royal wedding dress, “Horse” by Joan Miro and “Epiphany” by Hieronymus Bosch. We recommend visiting in the summer, when you can stroll through the picturesque sculpture garden before beating the heat in the air-conditioned galleries.

Honorable Mention:

The Franklin Institute – Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Do you recommend this?

+7
0
Rating: +7. From 7 votes.
Please wait…

National Museum of American Illustration
#40
National Museum of American Illustration

Rhode Island: National Museum of American Illustration

National Museum of American Illustration, Bellevue Avenue, Newport, RI, USA

Founded in 1998, the National Museum of American Illustration is the first national museum devoted to this specific kind of art. Housing more than 2,000 pieces of work by art darlings like N.C. Wyeth and Norman Rockwell, collections here range from the “Golden Age of American Illustration” to “Normal Rockwell & His Contemporaries: The Fabulous Forties to Sensational Sixties.” The museum, located in the Vernon Court Mansion, is currently closed for renovations and plans to reopen in April. In the meantime, you can explore the museum’s online exhibits and save your $20 admission fee for a trip this Spring.

Honorable Mention:

International Tennis Hall of Fame – Newport, Rhode Island

Do you recommend this?

+3
0
Rating: +3. From 3 votes.
Please wait…

International African American Museum
#41
International African American Museum

South Carolina: International African American Museum

International African American Museum, Wharfside Street, Charleston, SC, USA

At less than a year old, the International African American Museum is the newest facility to make our list. The museum opened in June 2023 on Gadsden’s Wharf where more than 40% of enslaved peoples first entered the United States. This museum is an incredible resource to learn about the stories of African Americans in this country through exhibitions like “American Journeys,” “Gullah Geechee” and “South Carolina Connections.” Admission is $22 for adults and includes access to the subtropical African Ancestors Memorial Garden.

Honorable Mention:

The Charleston Museum – Charleston, South Carolina

Do you recommend this?

+3
0
Rating: +3. From 3 votes.
Please wait…

Mammoth fossil dig site
#42
Mammoth fossil dig site

South Dakota: The Mammoth Site

The Mammoth Site, US-18 BYP, Hot Springs, SD, USA

I’ll say it. Mammoths aren’t the first thing we look for when seeking out a new museum, but The Mammoth Site has one of the most interesting origin stories of any museum in the country. Back in 1974, a construction worker named George Hanson unearthed bones while preparing land for a new neighborhood and later realized those bones belonged to a mammoth. Then, after construction stopped, the landowner discovered a mammoth skull and tusks. Following the bone bonanza, the housing developments changed into a working archaeological site and museum which was deemed a National Natural Landmark in 1980. To date, paleontologists have excavated a total of 61 mammoths at The Mammoth Site. While the Hot Springs landmark operates as a research facility and an active dig site, visitors can watch real-time excavation and see fossils for an admission fee of just $11.

Honorable Mention:

Children’s Museum of South Dakota – Brookings, South Dakota

Do you recommend this?

+4
0
Rating: +4. From 4 votes.
Please wait…

Chet Atkins display at the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum
#43
Chet Atkins display at the Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum. Photo via Shutterstock.

Tennessee: Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum

Country Music Hall of Fame and Museum, Rep. John Lewis Way South, Nashville, TN, USA

This museum is one of the planet’s biggest institutions devoted to the history, interpretation and preservation of the country music. From the roots of country music in the 1920’s to the twangy tunes of today, all sub-genres are well-represented. Admission is $29.95 for access to can’t-miss exhibits like “Sing Me Back Home: Folk Roots to the Present” and “American Currents: State of the Music,” the latter of which looks at country music today. The complex is also home to the CMA Theater and RCA Studio B, which is Nashville’s oldest recording studio still in existence and where Hall of Famers like Dolly Parton, Ernest Tubb, Elvis Presley, and countless others have recorded music. The piece de resistance here is the Hall of Fame Rotunda, a sky-lit pantheon dedicated to the greats of the genre.

Honorable Mention:

National Museum of African American Music – Nashville, Tennessee

Do you recommend this?

+3
0
Rating: +3. From 3 votes.
Please wait…

ort Worth, Texas - November 5, 2023: The Kimbell Art Museum is located in the cultural district and host European Old Masters and traveling art exhibitions in Ft Worth, Texas, USA
#44
Fort Worth, Texas - November 5, 2023: The Kimbell Art Museum is located in the cultural district and host European Old Masters and traveling art exhibitions in Ft Worth, Texas, USA

Texas: Kimbell Art Museum

Kimbell Art Museum, Camp Bowie Boulevard, Fort Worth, TX, USA

At the Kimbell Art Museum, you start with the building itself. Built primarily with white oak, travertine and concrete, the museum, designed by Louis I. Kahn, is all about subtly utilizing natural light to illuminate the more than 350 pieces of art at the museum. The artworks initially came from the private collection of Kay and Velma Kimbell, but the collection has consistently expanded. Most recently the Fort Worth museum acquired the ancient Mesoamerican sculpture “Standing Figure Holding a Were-Jaguar Baby” and the landscape painting “Going to Market, Early Morning” by Thomas Gainsborough. Adult tickets are $18 and will grant you access to a rotating bevy of special exhibitions like “Art and War in the Renaissance: The Battle of Pavia Tapestries” which will run from June 16 – September 15.

Honorable Mention:

Space Center Houston – Houston, Texas

Do you recommend this?

+5
0
Rating: +5. From 5 votes.
Please wait…

Dinosaurs displays at Natural History Museum of Utah.
#45
Salt Lake City, Utah USA - March 16th, 2022: Dinosaurs at Natural History Museum of Utah

Utah: Natural History Museum of Utah

Natural History Museum of Utah, Wakara Way, Salt Lake City, UT, USA

Housed in the ultra-modern 163,000 square foot Rio Tinto Center with a backdrop of foothills, the exhibitions here are a nod to billions of years of historical discoveries in Utah. Permanent collections like “First Peoples,” “Past Worlds,” “Gems and Minerals,” and “Great Salt Lake” explore Utah’s role in America’s history, while the “Utah Futures” exhibition serves as an all-ages interactive climate challenge where guests work together to learn about creating a more sustainable future for the Beehive State. Tickets are $22.95 for adults and we recommend visiting before May 27 to see “Becoming Jane: The Evolution of Dr. Jane Goodall.”

Honorable Mention:

Pioneer Memorial Museum – Salt Lake City, Utah

Do you recommend this?

+1
0
Rating: +1. From 1 vote.
Please wait…

Round barn at Shelburne Museum in Vermont
#46
Shelburne, Vermont. Round Barn found at the Shelburne Museum in Vermont. Built in 1901 as an efficient method of feeding cattle. Photo via Shutterstock.

Vermont: Shelburne Museum

9QJ2+7H Shelburne, VT, USA

Set on 45-acres of land near Lake Champlain and just a 10-minute car ride from Burlington, this museum has a little something for everyone spread about its 39 buildings – the majority of which are historic. The museum was founded and curated by Electra Havemeyer Webb with collections that range from the more traditional like “American Paintings,” “Impressionist Paintings, “Folk Art,” and “Textiles,” to the more obscure and zany like “Circus,” “Decoys,” and “Toys, Dolls, Dollhouses, and Automata.” There’s a carousel, Round Barn, 220-foot side wheel steamboat, and 22 gardens across the grounds, all included in the $25 adult admission fee.

Honorable Mention:

New England Maple Museum – Pittsford, Vermont

Do you recommend this?

+4
0
Rating: +4. From 4 votes.
Please wait…

National Museum of the Marine Corps, Quantico, Virginia. Photo via Shutterstock
#47
National Museum of the Marine Corps, Quantico, Virginia. Photo via Shutterstock.

Virginia: National Museum of the Marine Corps

National Museum of the Marine Corps, Semper Fidelis Way, Triangle, VA, USA

Just a hop, skip, and “oohrah” from the Marine Corps Base in Quantico, the National Museum of the Marine Corps in Triangle, Virginia serves as an educational resource and tribute to all of the Marines who have served and are currently serving. Since opening in 2006, the museum has become one of the top tourist attractions in Virginia, with more than 500,000 visitors annually. Parking and admission are free and exhibits include “Making Marines” which walks viewers through the transformation a Marine undergoes while training, and galleries dedicated to major wars beginning with World War I and ending with the Vietnam War. There’s also a Combat Art Gallery with works from active duty Marines, civilians, and Reservists and the museum has plans to expand galleries to include history from the mid-70’s to the September 11, 2001 attacks.

Honorable Mention:

Virginia Museum of Fine Arts – Richmond, Virginia

Do you recommend this?

+3
0
Rating: +3. From 3 votes.
Please wait…

Museum of Pop Culture in Seattle
#48
Aerial drone image of the Museum of Pop Culture in Seattle, Washington, USA. Photo via Shutterstock.

Washington: Museum of Pop Culture

Museum of Pop Culture, 5th Avenue North, Seattle, WA, USA

The Museum of Pop Culture is one of our favorite places to escape the rain whilst roaming the streets of Seattle. “The MoPOP,” as it is fondly called by locals, was founded in 2000 and is dedicated to all things pop culture, ranging from music and motion picture franchises to independent video games. Celebrated architect Frank Gehry designed the unmissable museum and its façade is reminiscent of some of his other sheet-metal constructions like the Guggenheim Museum Bilbao and the Walt Disney Concert Hall in Los Angeles. Inside the museum, you’ll find a collection of exhibits and artifacts dedicated to both the new and old, like “Scared to Death: The Thrill of Horror Film,” “Nirvana: Taking Punk to the Masses,” and the “Science Fiction + Fantasy Hall of Fame,” among others. Don’t miss the “Hendrix: Wild Blue Angel,” dedicated to Seattle’s own left-handed legend, Jimi Hendrix, and the tornado-esque guitar sculpture smack dab in the middle of the museum. Tickets start at $25 and move upward depending on the day and time.

Honorable Mention:

Burke Museum of Natural History and Culture – Seattle, Washington

Do you recommend this?

+2
0
Rating: +2. From 2 votes.
Please wait…

Huntington Museum of Art
#49
Huntington Museum of Art

West Virginia: Huntington Museum of Art

Huntington Museum of Art, McCoy Road, Huntington, WV, USA

Situated on 50 acres of land, the Huntington Museum of Art merges art and nature. Admission here is just $5 for adults – though if you visit on Tuesday, it’s free – and includes access to a permanent collection of more than 16,000 pieces of art, the state’s only plant conservatory, a coral reef aquarium, and six well-maintained hiking trails. The expansive collection includes Asian, Inuit, Haitian, and American Art, and the latter has works from Chuck Close, Andy Warhol, John Singer Sargent, and many more.

Honorable Mention:

Oil & Gas Museum – Parkersburg, West Virginia

Do you recommend this?

+1
0
Rating: +1. From 1 vote.
Please wait…

Milwaukee Art Museum with blue sky background.
#50
Milwaukee Art Museum with blue sky background. Photo by Shutterstock.

Wisconsin: Milwaukee Art Museum

Milwaukee Art Museum, North Art Museum Drive, Milwaukee, WI, USA

You won’t be able to miss the Milwaukee Art Museum thanks to the sculpturesque Quadracci Pavilion designed by Santiago Calatrava. One of three buildings on the museum’s campus, the edifice includes a 90-foot-high glass-ceilinged hall and the wings, or Burke Brise Soleil sunscreen, which unfolds and folds twice each day. Once you’ve finished marveling at the outside of the museum, you’ll pay a $22 admission fee that will grant you access to 32,000 works of art ranging from European to Contemporary, including the most renowned collection of art outside of Haiti. Georgia O’Keeffe lovers who can’t make it to her dedicated museum in New Mexico can enjoy a substantial collection of works from the Wisconsin native here as well.

Honorable Mention:

Harley-Davidson Museum – Milwaukee, Wisconsin

Do you recommend this?

+4
0
Rating: +4. From 4 votes.
Please wait…

Sunny view of the Buffalo Bill Center of the West.
#51
Sunny view of the Buffalo Bill Center of the West. Photo via Shutterstock.

Wyoming: Buffalo Bill Center of the West

Buffalo Bill Center of the West, Sheridan Avenue, Cody, WY, USA

Wyoming is known for wide open spaces and seven national parks, so when we first caught wind of the Buffalo Bill Center of the West and its five renowned museums, the Cowboy State officially had our attention. General admission here is $23 for adults and gains you entry to all of the museums and their special exhibitions, including the Draper Natural History Museum, the Whitney Western Art Museum, the New Cody Firearms Museum, the Plains Indian Museum, and of course, the Buffalo Bill Museum where you can learn about the lore of the Wild West and see artifacts that once belonged to Buffalo Bill and Annie Oakley.

Honorable Mention:

Wyoming State Museum – Cheyenne, Wyoming

Do you recommend this?

+2
0
Rating: +2. From 2 votes.
Please wait…