NYC - Major Museums - crowds

Mar 21st, 2012, 12:18 PM
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NYC - Major Museums - crowds

We plan to visit the Am Museum of Natural History and the Metropolitan Museum of Art when we visit NYC.

I see that they both offer highlights tours. I think that one would be helpful in order to condense huge musuems into a doable visit.

The availability of the highlights tours is skewed towards the weekend. Are the weekends substantially more crowded?
traveler2005 is offline  
Mar 21st, 2012, 12:33 PM
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starrs is offline  
Mar 21st, 2012, 12:37 PM
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You will find tours during the week especially at the Met. The docents are wonderful.
SueNYC is offline  
Mar 21st, 2012, 12:43 PM
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If you go to the Met on a weekend, do it in the morning, when it is much less crowded.
HowardR is offline  
Mar 21st, 2012, 01:14 PM
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Not far from the Met is the Frick.

Found it by accident and it's amazing.
Myer is offline  
Mar 21st, 2012, 02:04 PM
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When you go to the Met, do not enter up the steps. When facing the steps there is an entrance on the left on ground level. Much less crowded.

One of the posters here JRoth is a docent at the Met and they give them rigorous instruction. The traffic at the Met depends on the popularity of the special exhibits but the Natural History is more of a constant.
Aduchamp1 is offline  
Mar 21st, 2012, 02:32 PM
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Also - if the weather is bad the museums become much more crowded. The Nat' Hist especially is mobbed with kids - and nannies - if it rains or is chilly - stroller to stroller down the massive hallways.

Honestly, the museums are so huge there are always areas that are not busy - but usually the less inteesting ones. I suggest going to the web site of each and picking which departments you want to visit - since 3 or 4 is really the most you can do at once.
nytraveler is offline  
Mar 21st, 2012, 04:14 PM
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The Met is always busy on weekends but except for certain exhibits or newly reopened areas, you should be able to get into anything without much of a wait. The tours should not be a problem. They seem to take as many people as show up, and they are not as crowded as you might think. Most people tour the museum on their own, and many are repeat visitors coming to see a certain show.
Museum of Natural History can actually be packed midweek because of school field trips. On the weekend you probably get younger kids coming with parents, not mobs of rowdy bored 12 year olds!
nyer is offline  
Mar 22nd, 2012, 03:34 PM
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Sounds to me that dodging nannies and strollers might be a good trade-off to school field trip attendees.

Aduchamp - Thanks for the tip about the left entrance.

I stand corrected on the highlights tours The American Museum of Natural History has them daily. It's the Met that has them on Friday night and Saturday. They have other tours on other days - but the highlights one would probable be best for a one time visit. There's no way we can see even a little of what is there.
traveler2005 is offline  
Mar 22nd, 2012, 05:55 PM
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I'm amazed the kids on school trips are that old. I remember we did the Museum of Nat'l Hist when we were in the 3rd grade. Fifth was the UN. Don;t remember what 4th was.
nytraveler is offline  
Mar 22nd, 2012, 07:24 PM
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Note that the Met's Highlights Tours are docent's choice -- not a standard tour of highlights. (They're usually interesting, though.) You might also consider taking one the Met's suggested self-guided itineraries, or attending a gallery talk.
Fra_Diavolo is online now  
Mar 25th, 2012, 02:06 PM
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What about Saturday evening at the Met? I see that it is open until 9PM. I thought that might be a time that wouldn't be too crowded.
blh is offline  
Mar 29th, 2012, 01:04 PM
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Thanks for the idea about Saturday evening. We're planning on leaving right after a Saturday matinee - but will keep that in mind for a future trip. I'll bet it is a peaceful time there.
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