Top Museums to See: Chapter 1, U.S. Museums


Museums are often a major tourist attraction. They often hold a variety of subjects and content such as art, history, and science for children and adults alike. In addition, the content themselves are a gateway door to unexplored opportunities. They provide memorable and immersive learning experiences that provoke our imagination, introduce us to unknown worlds, and offer us unique environments for both families and friends.


In the United States, there are currently over 17,000 museums. With such untapped potential it is often hard to find the museums that can provide that enriching cultural experience. Below you will find a list the top must-see museums in the United States. Remember, the doors of knowledge are there. You just need to open them.


chiThe Art Institute of Chicago

If you are in the Greater Chicago area, I highly advise you to check out the Art Institute of Chicago (AIC). This infamous museum located in Chicago’s Grant Park provides numerous programs, resources and collection to increase art awareness and appreciation for all of its visitors. The AIC is an encyclopedic art museum featuring collections of Impressionist and Post-Impressionist art for its permanent collection. In addition, it holds various American art, Old Masters, European and American decorative art, Asian art, modern and contemporary art, and architecture and industrial and graphic design. During 2009, the attendance hit its highest with up to 2 million attendance and visitors.


Brief description of overall shootThe Smithsonian Institution

The world renowned Smithsonian Institution is reportedly the world’s largest museum and research complex holding 19 museums and galleries and the National Zoological Park in Washington D.C. Established in 1846, the Smithsonian has about thirty million annual visitors with a collection that includes 138 million artworks, artifacts, and specimens. In addition to its incredible collections, the museum itself is meant to shape the future by preserving and teaching the American heritage, discovering new knowledge, and sharing innovative resources with the world. They look to provide a service and an institution that discovers, explores, creates, excels, and serves the integrity, diversity, and service for its visitors.


metMetropolitan Museum of Art

If you are looking for an experience, then I highly recommend visiting the Metropolitan Museum of Art (MET) in New York City. The MET is reportedly the largest art museum in the United States. Its permanent collection contains more than two million works, divided across seventeen different departments. The more permanent collects at the MET are classical antiquity and Ancient Egyptian, paintings and sculptures from nearly all the European masters, and an extensive collection of American and Modern art. In addition, the MET has an extensive bridge with African, Asian, Byzantine, and Islamic collections found all throughout the world. One of their most notable and popular exhibits is the Roman sculptures collection varying from the Classical period all the way to the Hellenistic period. Keep in mind, to see all of these exhibits would take a majority of your day, two even if you are that invested in seeing its greatness.


phillyPhiladelphia Museum of Art

The Philadelphia Museum of Art is among the largest art museums in the United States. It holds more than 200,000 objects that include world-class European and American paintings, printings, drawings, and decorative art. In addition to the collection, the building is considered a landmark that is welcomed to everyone. Their goal is to bring art to life and inspire their visitors with scholarly study, creative play, and imaginative visits.