There are almost as many museums as there are Starbucks in New York City. The number varies from 150-200 depending on the source, but the bottom line is: it’s a lot. There are museums for every style of art, a museum on skyscrapers, a museum about subway cars and even a museum about the tenements of the lower east side. It’s one of the reasons why the Big Apple is the culture capital of the U.S.
If you happen to visit NYC in the summer, you’ll discover another benefit to so many museums in such a relatively small area: more places to escape the sweltering heat. When temps and humidity simultaneously reach into the 90s, you’ll appreciate ducking into a nicely chilled, air-conditioned building for an afternoon.
We all know about the Met and the MoMA, two of the finest art museums in the world, but below are some hidden gems you must discover during a summer trip to New York City.
Whitney Museum of American Art
Devoted to the art of United States, the Whitney Museum of American Art relocated to the Meatpacking District when its tall, 200,000 square foot, modern work-of-art of a new building was completed in 2015. The Whitney specializes in 20th century and contemporary American art, with a special focus on living artists, but you’ll also find collections by Edward Hopper, George Bellows, Jackson Pollack, Robert Rauschenberg, Man Ray, Andy Warhol and many others.
American Museum of Natural History
Not necessarily a hidden gem, but a gem nonetheless. American Museum of Natural History, located at Central Park West and 79th Street, is one of the world’s largest museums with its extensive dinosaur exhibits, Hall of North American Mammals, 28 interconnected buildings housing 45 permanent exhibition halls as well as the world-famous Hayden Planetarium. The museum is home to over 33 million specimens of plants, animals, fossils and cultural artifacts – with so many, it can only display a percentage of it at a time.
Museum of the Moving Image
Dedicated to everything film and TV, the Museum of the Moving Image holds the largest collection of artifacts relating to the art, history and technology of the moving image. It’s located in Astoria, Queens, just over the Hudson River from Manhattan. The museum’s core exhibits immerse visitors to the creative process of making moving images from film, TV and even video games with over 1,400 artifacts, interactive experiences and artworks.
Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum
Rescued from the scrapyard in the 70s, the infamous aircraft carrier, USS Intrepid, (which served in WWII and the Vietnam War) was converted into a museum in 1982 on Pier 86 in Hell’s Kitchen. Onboard the Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum, you’ll find over two dozen restored aircraft from military fighters to commercial aircraft, the Space Shuttle Enterprise and other exhibits, including the submarine, USS Growler.
The Brooklyn Museum
Located just on the edge of Prospect Park, The Brooklyn Museum is the third largest museum in New York City and usually less crowded than its Manhattan brethren. Inside the 560,000 square foot, lavishly ornate building is 1.5 million works of renowned collections of Egyptian, European, African, Oceanic and Japanese art and antiquities. American artists are also featured, including works by Mark Rothko, Norman Rockwell and Georgia O’Keeffe.
Book your trip to NYC to explore these great museums at allegiant.com.