New York City
Museum Tickets

Enter your dates to find available activities

Best museums in New York City

Looking for the best museums in New York? In “the city that never sleeps,” museums offer a quiet reprieve from the hustle and bustle of the big city. You’ll find some of the country’s finest art and culture showcased in New York. Just like catching a show on Broadway, strolling through Central Park, and climbing to the top of the Empire State Building, make sure to take some time to check out these New York museums.

History museums in New York City

Visit the Statue of Liberty

She’s the most iconic figure in the United States: the Statue of Liberty, located on Liberty Island. But you can experience more on this island than just a statue.

The Statue of Liberty Museum, opened in 2019, gives visitors the chance to dive deep into the history of the Lady Liberty statue. The “Inspiration Gallery” will give you a chance to actively participate in a digital exhibition called “Becoming Liberty.” How? Simply by sharing a selfie and reflecting on all that you’ve seen and learned in the museum. You’ll also be able to see the statue’s original torch!

Visit Ellis Island

You should plan to visit Ellis Island on the same trip to the Statue of Liberty. The National Museum of Immigration will enlighten you about the history of immigration in the United States. You’ll get to hear a few of the stories of the millions of immigrants who went through Ellis Island in search of a better life.

Visit the 9/11 Memorial and Museum

Although it’s a sobering experience, the 9/11 Memorial and Museum is an important part of New York City and American history. In the museum you will see thousands of artifacts linked to the September 11th terrorist attacks. A permanent historical exhibition recounts the story of what happened on 9/11. You can also watch three informative films that repeat throughout the day, included in your tour of the museum.

If you want to skip the museum and just visit the 9/11 Memorial, you can enter for free. Note that it’s located in the spot where the Twin Towers once stood. The memorial is made up of two large reflecting pools with the largest manmade waterfalls in North America. Bronze panels along the edge of the memorial pools list the names of every person who died in the attacks.

Science museums in New York City

Visit the American Museum of Natural History

Open every day of the year except Thanksgiving and Christmas, the American Museum of Natural History is one you won’t want to miss. You’ll see more than 30 million specimens in the museum, spread out among 42 museum halls. In these permanent exhibitions, you’ll find fossils and dioramas depicting information about birds, mammals, and human cultures around the world, plus even more. A general-admission ticket gives you access to all this, in addition to the Rose Center for Earth and Space. However, the special exhibitions, giant-screen films, and the Space Show will cost you extra.

Visit the Intrepid Sea, Air, & Space Museum

Do you want to see the world’s fastest jets and a submarine from the Cold War era? Head to the Intrepid Sea, Air, & Space Museum, which features an inspiring combination of history, science, and technology. At this museum, you will have an opportunity to explore this famous aircraft-carrier ship, the USS Intrepid. You can see the first space shuttle, Enterprise, which is showcased on the Space Shuttle Pavilion. 

Iconic museums in New York

Visit the Museum of Modern Art

No trip to the Big Apple would be complete without a visit to the world-famous Museum of Modern Art, also known as MoMA. It’s home to famous works of art, including Van Gogh’s The Starry Night, Monet’s Water Lilies, and Warhol’s Campbell’s Soup Cans. At MoMa you can also see Gauguin, Dali, Picasso, Matisse, and Pollock. You could easily spend hours exploring all the artwork that this museum has to offer.

Visit the Empire State Building

Finally, this list wouldn’t be complete without mentioning the Empire State Building. If you’re looking for stunning panoramic views of the city, go to the observation deck of one of the tallest buildings in the world. But did you know that you can also visit a museum on the second floor of the building? You can learn all about the history of the building as you pass the time waiting for your turn to go to the top.

Other Sightseeing Options in New York City

Want to discover all there is to do in New York City? Click here for a full list.

What people are saying about New York City

Overall rating

4.4 / 5

based on 12,244 reviews

Very emotional and allows those who weren't there that day to feel what was truly a horrifying and sad day for the world. Makes you remember when we all came together and did not have differences, unlike today. RIP to all of those lost that day and those first responders and recovery workers lost afterwards.

Go early because, like everywhere else, they'll screen you and check your bags. Also the ferries only go in a clockwise direction, so even if you just want to see the Statue, the ferry will still go to Ellis Island, then back to Manhattan.

Es espectacular, un lugar demasiado hermoso. Tendrás fotos divertidas, coloridas & hermosas! Vas a disfrutar muchísimo con tus amistades.

We had an amazing, awesome guide for the Statue of Liberty and Ellis island, she was very informative and made it an exciting experience.

Super fun, the upbeat attitude of the employees make the experience even better