How to visit an art museum


how to visit an art museum

Hey everyone! While the cats are away, this mouse is happy to do a little guest posting. I’m Sandra and I blog over at Raincoast Cottage about art, photography, film and the creative process. In other words, anything that inspires, challenges or entertains.

I also love to travel. I’ll go anywhere, anytime. And one of my favorite things to do when traveling is to visit art museum.

Here are my top tips to make your art museum visit a highlight of your vacation. (I’ve used MoMA,  the Museum of Modern Art in NYC, as an example but these tips apply to ANY art museum).

Ready? Let’s go!


DO check the museum website for free admission times. We’re all on a budget when traveling, right? (MoMA is free on Fridays from 4pm-8pm. Better than the U$20 ticket price. But get there early – it’s popular!)

DON’T bring a backpack or a bag larger than 11×14” as you may be required to check it. Why waste time in line ups?

DON’T use a flash camera. Some galleries allow still photographs but most will not allow any flash. This includes your iPhone or android.


DO bring a small notebook for sketching or taking notes.

DON’T expect to see everything – pick and choose ahead of time or ask at the information desk when you arrive.

DO rent/borrow the audio tour device. (They are free at MoMa but at other museums or galleries you may have to pay a small rental fee). Context is everything – you need the background info. And if you have kids, they often have audio tours just for them.


DON’T get in the way. Stay out of other visitors’ line of sight. Don’t block their view!

DO take a break when you feeling overwhelmed. Grab a drink or a coffee. (Café 2 on the second floor at MoMA is excellent).

DO visit the museum gift shop. You don’t need to buy anything – it’s fun just to browse and get inspired. (The MoMA bookstore is on the second floor, MoMA’s flagship shop is in the museum by the main entrance and MoMA design store is across the street).

DO buy postcards of your favorite artworks rather than coffee table books to save space, weight, and dollars.

So do you have any other tips to share?

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