5 Unique NYC Museums Worth Visiting

With so many options around, figuring out what to do in New York City can be difficult. But whether you're a local or a tourist, you should definitely make some time to check out the Big Apple's museums. The unique examples listed here fascinate and educate visitors, covering topics like American immigrants, finance, and NYC itself. This video was made with Ezvid Wikimaker.

Exceptional Museums In New York City

Organization Borough Mission
Tenement Museum Manhattan Foster a society that embraces and values the role of immigration in the evolving American identity
The City Reliquary Brooklyn Connect visitors to the past and present of New York through permanent displays of artifacts, rotating exhibits of community collections, and annual cultural events
Museum of Jewish Heritage Manhattan Educate diverse visitors about Jewish life before, during, and after the Holocaust
Minus Space Brooklyn Present the past, present, and future of reductive art to the public
Museum of American Finance Manhattan Improve understanding of the influence of financial institutions and capital markets on the US and global economies, and on individuals’ lives

8 Great Movies That Feature Museums

  1. Night at the Museum (2006)
  2. Belphegor: Phantom of the Louvre (2001)
  3. Horrors of the Black Museum (1959)
  4. The Da Vinci Code (2006)
  5. The Museum (2017)
  6. Tourist Trap (1979)
  7. Ocean's Eight (2018)
  8. Museum Hours (2012)

Ways To Engage In Lifelong Learning

  • Visit a museum
  • Read both fiction and non-fiction as often as you can
  • Teach others what you know
  • Explore new places
  • Start a creative project, like a vlog or podcast
  • Get a good desk for your home
  • Join a study group
  • Take a hike through nature
  • Listen to different types of music
  • Look up words you don't know in the dictionary

The History of New York

In Depth

There's plenty to see and do in New York City for tourists and locals alike. If you've spent a lot of time in the Big Apple, or prefer to stray from the beaten path, you might want to seek out these five institutions, listed here in no particular order. Each of these unique museums offers an experience that is both fascinating and enriching, covering everything from Jewish history to reductive art.

First up, at #1, is the Tenement Museum, which focuses on the history of refugees and immigrants in America. Since issues surrounding this topic are still taking center stage, the museum strives to help its visitors learn the lessons of the past and embrace and value the role that immigration has played in the evolving American identity. They offer guided tours and curriculum for educators, as well as online resources such as the podcast "How To Be American," which explores evocative stories from throughout the nation's past.

The organization also provides programming for modern-day immigrants. Shared Journeys, designed for adults learning English as a second language, helps students place their experiences within a broader historical and political framework and encourages engagement with civic issues. Tenement Museum also partners with Citizenship Now! to help provide free immigration law services for individuals and families. If you'd like to support these and other efforts, you can give a donation online or become a member.

The organization also provides programming for modern-day immigrants.

For #2, we have The City Reliquary, a Brooklyn-based not-for-profit that connects visitors to the past and present of New York through rotating and permanent exhibits and cultural events. It began as a window display in founder Dave Herman's Williamsburgh apartment and it has since moved to a storefront only a few blocks from its original location. Committed to its community, the museum hosts block parties, backyard concerts, and film screenings throughout the year.

The permanent collection is an eclectic mix of artifacts that includes subway tokens, geological core samples, and Statue of Liberty postcards, among other unique items. Rotating community collections showcase the work of everyday New Yorkers, giving passionate collectors the chance to share their treasures with the public. Those who wish to contribute can gift either money or artifacts to help The City Reliquary continue to not only sustain itself, but expand and evolve.

In the #3 spot, we find the Museum of Jewish Heritage. Committed to educating the public about Jewish life before, during, and after the Holocaust, it draws on artifacts, historical resources, and recorded testimony from survivors to teach the dangers of intolerance. By challenging visitors young and old to confront this painful chapter of our past, the organization hopes to guide the next generation to a brighter future. The Holocaust Curriculum furthers these efforts by sharing educational resources with middle and high school students and teachers.

Committed to educating the public about Jewish life before, during, and after the Holocaust, it draws on artifacts, historical resources, and recorded testimony from survivors to teach the dangers of intolerance.

The museum has hosted several restitution ceremonies over the years. These events commemorate paintings and other artifacts that were stolen by Nazis being returned to their rightful owners. It also holds the Annual Gathering of Remembrance, which gives the New York community a chance to gather each year and ensure that they never forget the horrors of the Holocaust. By becoming a member, you can help the museum continue to promote understanding of Jewish heritage.

At #4 is Minus Space, which has been presenting the past, present, and future of reductive art since it was founded in 2003. The artists they represent and collaborate with come from all over the world and create groundbreaking works across all visual arts media. While these creators and their visions are quite diverse, they all work with the reductive art aesthetic, which values simplicity, streamlined compositions, restricted color, and primary shapes.

In its early days, the organization was a digital project that curated and critiqued works online. This lack of a tangible space is what gave the group its name. However, as the project evolved, it started to showcase physical exhibitions in a gallery in Brooklyn. While it is based in New York, Minus Space also puts on events all over the world. Those who wish to support the museum can either visit in person or purchase art and books online.

However, as the project evolved, it started to showcase physical exhibitions in a gallery in Brooklyn.

Finally, at #5, we get the Museum of American Finance. Since the economy impacts everyone, this organizations strives to improve the public's understanding of the influence that financial institutions and capital markets have on the U.S. and global economies, and on individuals' lives. Its exhibits cover everything from the history of gold to the legacy of Alexander Hamilton. The Museum Finance Academy, a free eight-week course, teaches students about to graduate high school how to manage their personal budgets. Public events hosted by MoAF include film screenings, walking tours, and lectures.

Schools in the greater NYC area can request an off-site class or download educational materials online. Those interested in economics who don't live near the museum can get a membership, which includes a subscription to the quarterly magazine Financial History, an internationally-recognized source for the history of commerce and the development of the American capital markets.