Contrary to popular belief museums are fun! Why you may ask … because I said so! Just kidding. The main reason I love museums is that it gives me the opportunity to expand my worldview. Without museums, my perspective would be so limited. But it’s difficult and expensive to get an all-around experience of the world without unlimited funding! Tickets for a museum can cost $15-$50 a ticket… which from time to time, is super affordable. I can learn about so many things in a matter of hours. And — the experts are just an arms reach away (well now 6ft away with our covid precautions)
Museums aren’t for everyone — but if you ever need a creative outlet — or a cute date night idea, you might want to try it out!
Learn about the place and culture
Similar to learning a new culture through cuisine (link article), museums are a wonderful way to learn about a new place and their past/present/future culture. Checking out the museums in the area is one of the easiest ways to learn more about a place. A museum is a way of remembering the past, honoring those who could be forgotten, or a chance to brag about something they are REALLY good at. If you’ve ever been to Japan — you’d know that there exists a Ramen museum. When I travel, local museums are a must!
The Andy Warhol Museum in Pittsburgh, PA showcases one of the city’s most famous artists. Having lived in Pittsburgh and studied at Carnegie Mellon (just like Andy Warhol!), being able to go to the museum and see his work allowed me to understand how much of an influence he had on art and expression throughout the city. Many places adapted his works to wallpapers and art installations to pay tribute to his genius.
Learn about the people and history
We, humans, have been on Earth for a long time but many of us don’t take the time to stop and think about where we came from. This is one of my most favorite activities – to think about how far we have come and how far we have to go still. Museums showcase these processes beautifully. Understanding our species before our time, what they went through, what they dealt with on a daily basis, their thought processes, etc. It paints a wonderful picture of where we were and how we got to where we are.
Computer History Museum in Mountain View, CA. Although not very famous outside of Silicon Valley, this museum is a great place to geek out and see the exponential innovations that have taken place in the world of technology. I am actually old enough to remember a time when AOL was the most popular online program users had, and when computer screens were not flat. Museums tell a rich story about history. Particularly, countries that have been colonized will most likely have museums that tell a story about the struggles and strengths of the conquered. India, like many others, has museums dedicated to making sure the history isn’t forgotten.
Expand your horizons
Art museums are so inspiring and intellectually stimulating for me. I love going to art museums with at least one other person. It is a fun experience to take a look at something, think about the way you see it, how the artist sees it, and then how your friend sees it. On top of giving you three different perspectives, you learn a thing or two about the artists, with your friend!
Discounts and Special Events
As a college student for the past six years, I have been able to take advantage of all the student discounts to get cheaper admission fees. Don’t miss out if you currently have a student ID card! Some museums like the MET in New York City, allow special groups of people to even pay lower than the admission price as a “donation” price. If you qualify, this is an amazing way to save some money as well.
The last thing you should know about museums, especially art museums is that they traditionally have rotating displays that change throughout the year. You can always find more information on their website about their special exhibits and events.
Now, close your device and get going to your local museum!