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8 Cool Museums to visit in NYC

by ElenaSergeeva

Among the many fantastic attractions in New York City are the museums, which are not only plenty in numbers but also in scale and variety. There are over 100 museums in New York City, some of them being the best in the country and in the world like the Metropolitan Museum of Art or the American Museum of Natural History. There is an institution for every kind of interest, whether it’s in art, culture, music, history, science, or unusual and quirkier subjects. We have created an exquisite list of the top 8 cool museums in NYC for those seeking to explore the alternative.

1. Museum of Modern Art (MoMA)

Located in the Midtown Manhattan neighborhood of New York, the Museum of Modern Art of New York City, is one of the largest and most influential museums of modern art in the world. MoMa’s exhibits include a large collection of modern and contemporary art in the forms of architecture and design, sculptures, drawings and paintings, photography, prints, audiovisual installations and other electronic media, while the MoMa library includes over 300,000 books and exhibitions catalogs.

The museum includes an impressively large collection of masterpieces by famous artists such as Vincent Van Gogh, Pablo Picasso, Paul Gaugin, Francis Bacon and Claude Monet. Exceptional pieces of art portrayed in the museum’s premises are the Water Lilies painting by Monet and Night Fishing at Antibes oil canvas by Picasso, which alone are worth the visit to the museum. A great addition to the 6-department museum is the The Abby Aldrich Rockefeller Sculpture Garden, designed by Philip Johnson, which accommodates an exceptional array of sculptural works from distinguished artists such as Joan Miró, Henri Matisse and Alberto Giacometti, amongst others.

For admission tickets and more we recommend:

Admission is $25 and free for citizens of New York City.

New York: Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) Entry Ticket

2. Museum of Ice-Cream

Located in SoHo, the trendiest area in New York, this small pinky museum invites visitors to board on an unforgettable experience into the ice-cream land. The Museum features imaginative multi-sensory installations that are candy-colored and ice-cream shaped, like ice-cream cones, giant scoops, floating dessert tables, and rain sprinkles. While exploring this recreative museum, you will also learn about the history of ice-cream, how it is made and of course, you can savor the signature ice-cream flavors and other sweet treats while taking this journey. No visitor shall leave the establishment before taking a plunge in the fabulous Sprinkle Pool!

As this museum is very popular, it is recommended that reservations and tickets must be purchased in advance.

For admission tickets and more we recommend:

New York City: Museum of Ice Cream General Admission Ticket

3. Leslie-Lohman Museum Of Gay And Lesbian Art

Another addition to SoHo’s, high-end galleries and excquite museums is the Leslie-Lohman Museum of Art which started collecting art pieces in 1969 to preserve the art of the LGBTQ community or art about LGBTQ themes, issues, and people. A great and symbolic addition to the museum’s collection, is the work collected during the AIDS pandemic of the 1980s, from dying and sick artists, whose family out of shame or ignorance wanted to destroy. All things apart, the museum exhibits exceptional pieces of art, which are worthy of a group guided tour.

Admission is $10, which is collected for donations.

4. Whitney Museum of American Art

Amongst the cool museums in NYC is the new Whitney Museum of American Art, inaugurated in 2015 in an impressive 63,000 square facility, designed by world-class architect Renzo Piano, in the grounds of the West Village neighborhood of Lower Manhattan. The premises of the museum displays over 25,000 pieces of works, such as paintings, drawings, prints, photographs, films, sculptures and installation art created by 20th and 21st century American artists. 

The rooftop view of the Whitney Museum of Art in New York City

The museum places great emphasis in promoting and encouraging younger and lesser-known American Artists, during their Annual and Biennial exhibitions where they can showcase their works. Additionally for those seeking to engage more with American Art there are daily events and workshops about the history of art and art itself,  which all visitors can participate in. Don’t miss to visit the outdoor sculpture spaces and terraces, which provide amazing views of the Hudson and surrounding neighborhoods. 

Admission is $25 for adults and $20 for discounted parties. Early bookings are $18. 

For admission tickets and more we recommend:

Whitney Museum of American Art: Entry Ticket

5. Museum of Sex (MoSex)

The outside of the Museum of Sex during the day in New York City

Another cool museum in NYC is the museum dedicated to elevating porn and erotica. The museum is promiscuous in a sense, as attractions include VR experiences in strip-clubs and brothels, erotic galleries and sex shops, a boob-themed bounce room, a colorful kaleidoscope-like tunnel amongst many other cool installations. The motive of this museum behind all the fantasy is to explore such issues as gender and the impact of new technologies on human sexual behavior and to preserve and present the history, evolution, and cultural significance of sexuality. 

Only adults over 18 years old are admitted in the museum and the admission is $18. 

6. Museum Of The American Gangster

The Museum of the American Gangster is located on the grounds of a former speakeasy once frequented by Al Capone, John Gotti and Lucky Luciano, in the East Village neighborhood of Manhattan. The museums’ collection include newspapers, photographs and other original documents dating the Prohibition Era of the 20’s when the sale of alcoholic beverages was banned and it was in this very own speakeasy where gang groups ran their black market and other organized crimes such as gambling and prostitution. Also in the premises of the museum, the bullets from the Saint Valentine’s Day massacre investigation and a bullet from the shooting of Pretty Boy Floyd are exhibited. 

Admission is $20 Adult and $15 Students & Seniors.

7. Museum Of Food And Drink (MOFAD)

MOFAD brings the world of food and drink to life with exhibits where visitors can use all their 5 senses, see, taste, hear, touch, and smell. Located in the borough of Brooklyn in the Williamsburg section, the museum’s aspiration is to change the way people think about food and drink and teach visitors in which ways food and beverage impact our culture, politics, economy, and history. The museum also highly focuses on inspiring a new generation of informed consumers, chefs, food educators, and producers through various workshops and educational events and programs for people of all ages. The museum also focuses on raising awareness of endangered regional cuisines and culinary arts and drawing big attention to the history and influences of all worldwide cuisines, which proves again that the museum is more than just a recreational venue, but a serious educational institution as well. 

Of course, there is a delicious tasting session at the end of the exhibits, where visitors can indulge in authentic food!  

Admission is $14 for adults, $10 for students and seniors, and $7 for children.

8. Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum

The last but not least cool museum in NYC on our list,  is the Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum located at Pier 86 of Hudson River Park. The Museum is precisely dedicated to the exhibition and interpretation of history, science and service of the aircraft carrier Intrepid which has fought in World War II, has survived five kamikaze attacks and one torpedo strike, has served in the Vietnam War, the Cold War and has also served as a NASA recovery vessel in the 1960s. Today this “masterpiece” is berthed on the Hudson River, serving as the centerpiece of the Intrepid Sea Air & Space Museum. Additionally, the museum collection includes military aircrafts such as the cruise missile submarine USS Growler, a British Airways Concorde, a Lockheed A-12 supersonic reconnaissance plane and the Space Shuttle Enterprise. Audio tours, simulators and 3D Films are a great way for visitors to engage and learn about the history behind the ships and aircrafts of the exhibition. 

Admission is $33 and $24 for children under 12. 

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