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Explore the brilliance of The Metropolitan Museum of Art

It is one of New York’s most popular tourist attractions and attracts up to 7.35 million visitors every year. The Metropolitan Museum of Art has something to offer for everyone from – Egyptian vases to Roman statues there is something nearly for everyone. It is largely referred to as the Met and has more than 2 million pieces of art that span over 5,000 years. It is the largest museum in the United States and the fifth-largest museum in the world. Today, we will look at all the wonderful things to explore at the Metropolitan Museum of Art.   

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The contents inside of the Met’s permanent collection range from a diverse group of ages, mediums, and geography. Most of the Egyptian art pieces are from 300,000 B.C. – 4th century A.D. Musical instruments, Modern Art and The Cloisters are part of the permanent collection as well. To get a better handle of the variety and diversity of the Met’s 2 million pieces of art, visit their website and you can search their database for valuable information. It is almost impossible to see the entire collection of art in one or even a few days. It is best to take a tour so that you can cover the important parts of the museum.   

Getting there and when to visit

The address for the museum is 1000 Fifth Avenue, New York, NY 10028. The cross streets are 5th Avenue and 82nd. If you wish to take public transport to reach the museum, take the 4/5/6 to 86th Street. Walk West to 5th Avenue and then south to 82nd Street. You can also take the yellow cab to the Met from anywhere in the city.   

The museum, due to its immense popularity, can draw large crowds. They also often host special exhibits which can even further get more crowds. Therefore, to avoid this and see an exhibit try arriving early in the day and visiting on a weekday, if possible, to reduce the chance of being stuck in a line and battling to see the exhibit. The Met is open Sun through Tuesday and Thursday from 10 am to 5 pm and on Friday and Saturday from 10 am to 9 pm. The entry fee into the Met is $30 for adults, $17 for students, and free for children under 12.   

For Parking, there is a parking garage which is situated on Fifth Avenue and 80th Street and is open 24 hours a day, seven days a week.   

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Members and patrons will get a 10% discount at all public restaurants at the Met. Here are some of the locations to have food when visiting the Met: –  

  • The Eatery – It is a family-friendly dining option with options for visitors of every taste including pizza, sandwiches, salads, soups, and desserts. It is on the ground floor near the Robert Lehman Collection Galleries.  
  • The American Wing Cafe – It is a great spot to enjoy coffee, wine, or beer and enjoy views of American masterwork.   
  • Great Hall Balcony Cafe – This cafe includes beverages, sandwiches, sushi, and light snacks. Located on floor 2 near the Great Hall Balcony.  
  • The Met Dining Room – It is an upscale restaurant with views of Central Park. Dinner is served on Friday and Saturday only.  
  • Trie Cafe – It is open from April through October and is in a peaceful outdoor setting. It is situated at Trie Cloister on the ground floor.  

Things to see at Metropolitan Museum of Art

  • Self Portrait with a Straw Hat – Vincent Van Gogh’s Self Portrait with a Straw Hat is an interesting piece of art. During his time in Paris, Van Gogh painted more than twenty self-portraits in the hopes that he could perfect his skills. Instead of using a model, he would use a mirror to paint himself. Take all your time while you’re at the Met to admire this masterpiece.   
  • Death of Socrates – Socrates was a well-respected philosopher who was loved by many people and hated by others. He would share his wisdom openly and was accused of corrupting the minds of the youth. He was ordered to be punished by death by hemlock. The French artist Jacques Louis David painted this amazing portrait in the scene he called “The Death of Socrates”. It shows Socrates reaching for the hemlock as his disciples look in anguish and hopelessness.   
  • The Denial of Saint Peter – According to the story in the bible, Saint Peter had betrayed Jesus three times, and this is depicted in the famous painting by Italian painter Caravaggio. This heartfelt painting is filled with symbolism. The three fingers that point at Peter allude to the three times he had betrayed Jesus.   
  • Washington Crossing the Delaware – This painting preserves the night of December 25-26, 1776, when George Washington and his army decided to cross the Delaware River during the Revolutionary War. This was the first surprise attack against the British Army and a massive victory in America’s fight for independence. Although the earlier version of the painting was destroyed in a fire and was restored immediately. Unfortunately, it was destroyed again in a bomb raid during World War II.   
  • The Dance Class & Little Dancer – This popular Metropolitan Museum of Art painting showcases a group of ballerinas along with their mothers, apprehensively waiting on a ballerina’s examination while the instructor watches.   
  • Rembrandt Self-Portrait – Rembrandt was a world-class Dutch painter who is known even among people who don’t have any idea about art. He decided his entire life to master the art of self-portrait. He created approximately 80 self-portraits in his life, out of which only 40 survived and the Met is lucky enough to have one on display.   
  • Aristotle with a bust of Homer – This is also a must-see at the Met. It is located just a few steps from Rembrandt’s self-portrait. This painting is the reason alone to visit the Met and is one of the most famous paintings in the world.  
  • Bridge over a Pond of Lillies – Bridge over a Pond of Lilies shines slightly over the beauty of nature. Do not miss the opportunity to visit this painting as it is one of the most famous ones at the Met.  
  • The 5 Paintings by Vermeer – The Met is home to five of Vermeer’s paintings, which is the most in the world. He fell into anonymity and wasn’t appreciated until the end of the 19th century. All these five paintings are displayed side by side, giving you time to appreciate his mastery.  
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Other things to see

Other than viewing all the paintings, there are several other important relics, vintage shoes, rare books, and fascinating furniture to explore at the Met. Let’s look at some of these.    

  • Ugolino and his Sons – It is an amazing marble sculpture that invokes a sense of hopelessness and torture. It was produced by Jean-Baptiste Carpeaux. Ugolino was an Italian politician, and his legacy is one of betrayal and tragedy. He was accused of treason and along with his sons was imprisoned in Pisa.   
  • Temple of Dendur – It is a must-see attraction at the Metropolitan Museum of Art simply because it is the only complete Egyptian Temple in the Western Hemisphere. This temple was given as a gift from Egypt to the United States for their contributions to the campaign to save historic sites.   
  • Greek and Roman Sculpture Court – Visit this sculpture court to engross yourself in breathtaking marble sculptures. Some notable statues included are the Marble statue of a wounded warrior, the Marble column from the Temple of Artemis at Sardi’s, and the Marble Statue Group of the three Graces.  
  • Arms and ArmorIt explores, preserves, and exhibits impressive armor, swordsmiths, and gunmakers.   
  • Human-Headed Winged Lion – These human-headed winged lions were used to protect doorways in Assyrian places.   
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  • A Central Park – Add some shopping to your trip and return to your hotel on 5th Avenue and also see some of the fantastic attractions in Midtown.   
  • Hotel Beacon – It is right across from Central Park in the Upper West Side and not very far from the Met. You can relax and unwind over here.  
  • Loews Regency New York Hotel – It is a family-friendly hotel located on the Upper East Side and just two blocks away from Central Park.   

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