New York City Museums and Culture

    Museum of Television & Radio, Manhattan
  25 West 52nd Street - New York, NY           
Amidst the hustle and bustle of busy midtown Manhattan lays a tribute to the history of television and radio known as the Paley Center for Media (formerly known as The Museum of Television and Radio). Far from your typical museum, you will not find artifacts hidden behind glass enclosures or many “do not touch signs” here. Instead you will be delighted to find screening rooms, and a vast media collection from which you can choose an actual program and view it. Visitors are allowed to a selection of up to four programs per visit. There are also two, full-sized theatres which often feature public programs, so check the schedule and make sure you time your visit to catch one. This Manhattan museum also offers many family and educational programs. The “Re-Creating Radio Workshop”, teaches children (over 9) and adults to produce and re-create old time radio dramas, with the use of scripts, music and a variety of sound effects. This is a fun way for parents and children to experience media in the way that their grandparents used to enjoy the new world of multi-media. And if you remember the early days of broadcasting, come and reminisce the magic of your youthful imagination. The Paley Center really has something for everyone!
    Yeshiva University Museum, Manhattan
  15 West 16th - New York, NY            
In the heart of Greenwich Village sits the beautiful Yeshiva University Museum. Dedicated to exploring 3000 years of the Jewish experience, each piece in the gloriously displayed museum has been handpicked to fully ensure a realistic depiction of the Jewish culture as it is represented around the world. Visitors are given the opportunity to not only view the exhibits but to experience them in a variety of ways. An exhibition arcade gives you the chance to go hands-on with a variety of attractions while the outdoor sculpture garden allows you to see life-sized displays of phenomenal quality and culture. For the little ones the museum offers a special workshop room where they can construct and interact while still learning the teachings of the Jewish people. The museum also offers a state-of-the-art AV Projection room and 250 seat auditorium which is used to host a variety of guest speakers, displays and shows. In Spring and Summer 2012, the museum will be continuing on with two very special exhibits including the “Trail of the Magic Bullet” which follows the Jewish encounter with medicine and “Silk Stones” which is a special dedication to the works by Rochelle Rubinstein. The Yeshiva University Museum is one of the best funded and maintained Jewish museums in the world and is well-worth a look when in New York City.
    Wyckoff Farmhouse Museum
  5816 Clarendon Road - Brooklyn, NY            
As diverse and unique as any structure in Brooklyn, the Wyckoff Farmhouse Museum is a part of American Culture that you cannot afford to miss. Revered as the oldest standing building in New York City and a National Landmark, the Wyckoff Farmhouse is a stunning example of America's colonial past, nestled into the beautiful Brooklyn landscape. During its guided tours, patrons are able to learn about the rich history of the Wyckoff Farmhouse, from its use as a Dutch farm to the impact the farmhouse had on African-American culture. There are several different tours to experience including an in-depth look at the construction of the farmhouse and how it compares to today’s society. The more hands-on exhibits are truly the main attraction of the Wyckoff Farmhouse, offering a variety of colonial tasks including butter churning, herbs and sachet making, and crop examination. If you are fortunate enough to visit the Wyckoff Farmhouse in the Summer 2012 you will have the opportunity to see the organic lifestyle surrounding the colonial days and even participate in a scavenger hunt through the on-site garden. For an experience into Brooklyn's treasured culture and a clock-turning look at the past, make sure you visit the Wyckoff Farmhouse Museum.
    Garibaldi Meucci Museum
  420 Tompkins Avenue - Staten Island, NY            
One of the most unique and beautifully preserved homes in America is the Garibaldi-Meucci Museum on Staten Island. Maintained to look as it was, over a hundred and fifty years ago, the Garibaldi-Meucci Museum is owned and operated by the Sons of Italy as a tribute to the famous Italians Antonio Meucci and Giuseppe Garibaldi. Inside, the house is divided to represent both of these famous men by having a variety of exhibits and displays documenting their lives work. You could try one of the early versions of the telephone which Meucci is proclaimed to have invented years before Alexander Graham Bell or even look at the first underwater communication models. If Italian revolutionaries are more to your liking, you can experience first renditions of Garibaldi’s novels about the Italian people or gaze at Italian artifacts provided directly from the Italian government. The museum is built by the people and for the people, giving its patrons an opportunity to feel a true part of this Italian legacy. This New York City museum is one of the most beautiful depictions of Italian culture and makes it a fun and highly informative destination for any native New Yorker.
    Staten Island Museum
  75 Stuyvesant Place - Staten Island, NY              
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Are you interested in a quirky change to the standard museum experience? The Staten Island Museum is a small but very fun museum located just two blocks west of the Staten Island Ferry Terminal. The Staten Island Museum has a fun selection of exhibits that document the art, natural science and history that surrounds Staten Island. One great experience includes taking a look at the geological display that allows visitors to gaze through special microscopes that show the intricate designs within the local soil. Another fun fact is that the museum offers a wall of mounted butterflies and wildlife which is larger than any other display on Staten Island. The Ferry system is also extensively chronicled, showing the history of the ferry and how it has benefitted the people of New York. Always conscious of their family atmosphere, this modest New York museum even offers special free days for its visitors, which gives more people an added opportunity to experience the wealth of natural history. Featuring a variety of experiences and exhibits that are both informative and fun, the Staten Island Museum is really a crown jewel in the museum scene.
    Brooklyn Historical Society
  128 Pierrepont Street - Brooklyn, NY             
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The cornerstone of Brooklyn’s enlightened history and the pinnacle of museum life, the Brooklyn Historical Society takes everything that is Brooklyn and makes it vibrant and tangible for all to experience. The Brooklyn Historical Society is not just a museum; it’s the very vehicle designed to preserve and present the past. Every single aspect of Brooklyn’s history is represented within the Queen Anne styled building and offers something for everybody. If you are a baseball buff then you can relive the days of Duke Snyder and the Brooklyn Dodgers through the sports exhibit. If you are from a Jewish heritage you can learn more about the significant history of the Jews in New York through the Brooklyn Jewish Historical Initiative. Even the most prominent New Yorkers are featured within the Brooklyn Historical Society, giving you an opportunity to dive into the immense history of New York and how Brooklyn’s populace played its part in setting that stage. Summer 2012 marks the time of remodeling of the Brooklyn Historical Society which will further expand its walls and give even more people an opportunity to see the real Brooklyn. The Brooklyn Historical Society is one of the most awe-inspiring and enlightening experiences available in New York City and needs to be visited live in order to be appreciated fully.
    King Manor Museum, Queens
  Jamaica Ave. between 150th - 153rd Streets - Jamaica, NY            
The American Civil War has fascinated historians and the general public alike for generations. One of the most discussed and researched topics from this time period is the anti-slavery movement and how certain individuals utilized their abilities to help spearhead change in the country. The King Manor Museum is a Queens museum dedicated to Rufus King and shows the ramifications his life had on reshaping a nation. Located in the preserved home of King, the King Manor Museum is a step back in time as you experience the life of a foregone era. Inside, visitors are greeted by a variety of interpretive programs designed to enlighten them on the King family life, from the signing of the constitution to the struggles of post-Civil War America. Spring 2012 offers a unique opportunity to visitors as the King Manor looks to further enhance its grounds by allowing them to participate in the planting of the very first garden since the days of Rufus King himself. With over 1400 unique pieces of memorabilia and a dedication to informing about the past, the King Manor Museum is sure to impress and engage all who go.
    Historic Richmond Town
  441 Clarke Avenue - Staten Island, NY             
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Historic Richmond Town is a living history museum located in Staten Island, New York. It is a complex of buildings and structures that have been carefully preserved to give visitors a glimpse into the past and a better understanding of the history and culture of Staten Island and New York City. The museum features over 30 historical structures, including a colonial-era courthouse, a one-room schoolhouse, and a variety of homes and businesses that were once located throughout Staten Island. Visitors can experience what life was like in the past through interactive exhibits, tours, and living history demonstrations. The museum is also home to the Staten Island Historical Society, which is dedicated to preserving and sharing the history of Staten Island and its residents. The society's collections include artifacts, documents, and photographs that provide a glimpse into the lives of the people who lived on Staten Island throughout history.
The museum is open to visitors throughout the year and offers a variety of programs, events, and activities for visitors of all ages. Visitors can take a tour of the museum's buildings and structures, participate in hands-on activities, attend lectures and workshops, and explore the museum's gardens and grounds. The Decker Farm is also part of the museum's property, where visitors can enjoy the bountiful harvests of produce from its well-maintained and beautiful organic fields, and learn about the farming practices used in the past.
In Historic Richmond Town, visitors can live vicariously through history and really gain a feel for the true American experience. It's a great place to bring friends and family to create memories that will last a lifetime. With its rich history, beautiful architecture, and engaging programs, it's easy to see why visitors keep coming back to this unique and historic museum.
    National Lighthouse Museum
  30 Bay Street - 5th floor - Staten Island, NY            
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A bright light on a dark coast, the National Light Museum in Staten Island is one of the newest contributions to American culture and distinguishes an often overlooked part of maritime development. Guest speakers from the museum explain the significance and development of the lighthouse on the east coast. They also speak of the various stories involving the history of shipping and waterways of the State of New York and the application of lighthouses to the modern day maritime world. In Spring of 2012, the National Lighthouse Museum was given a high honor by playing host to the 100th anniversary of the arrival of the Titanic to New York. While the museum itself highlights some of the most unique and important developments for lighthouses and boating from the past, the crown achievement of the National Lighthouse Museum has been the development of in-depth boat tours chronicling the different lighthouses along the New York coast. The boat tour, in cooperation with the museum, establishes the history and importance of lighthouses and how they helped in everything from merchant travel to wartime efforts. The National Lighthouse Museum is a beacon, both literally and figuratively, of America’s growth and heritage.
    Ellis Island Immigration Museum, Manhattan
  Ellis Island - New York, NY             
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From Battery Park, you can take the ferry across to the famous Ellis Island Immigration Museum. You will be astounded by the wealth of information they have. Make sure you check out the American Family Immigration History Center where you can access passenger records. A great sense of pride comes with finding out about your family’s history by accessing this great interactive exhibit. The museum is also currently featuring a special exhibit in the west wing “The Spirit of America” Gibson Les Paul guitar is up on display. Made of artifacts preserved during the centennial restoration of the island, this exhibit is an amazing mixture of art, culture and beauty. Wood grain details from the preserved steps and doors of the main building really catch the eye, while the copper inlay is composed of copper preserved from the Statue of Liberty National Monument. While the creators seem to use the universal language of music to send a message of freedom and convey a great sense of pride for the land we call America. Visit often during the year to experience some of the most intriguing New York museums and culture. You may find you can spend a whole day lost in history at this one of-a-kind museum.
    The Hispanic Society of America, Manhattan
  613 West 155th Street - New York, NY           
Two beautiful lion sculptures perched on pedestals in all their majesty, greet you at the entrance of the Hispanic Society of America, upon walking up the grand stairs and into a world of vast history and culture. Amazingly enough, the admission at this Manhattan museum is free, in addition to the wealth of resources they provide for the curious mind. The vast collections here are unparalleled, with information on nearly every aspect of culture in Spain, Portugal and Latin America. Boasting many archeological artifacts, paintings and sculptures, one will be awestruck at the beauty surrounding them. Just stepping inside this Manhattan museum provides great insight to the Spanish culture. Stop in and take a look at the wide variety of earthenware and porcelain artifacts from other museums. The collection of textiles is among the best in the world, with a fascinating selection of rare carpets that captivate and educate one in the history of each one-of-a-kind piece. If you are seeking to advance your understanding, gain a sense of self and your culture, or you if are simply desirous of surrounding yourself in the rich culture and beauty that abounds in this world, stop in for a spring or summer 2012 visit.
    Conference House
  7455 Hylan Boulevard - Staten Island, NY            
Known for being the first house museum on Staten Island, this New York City museum is rich in history on many levels. Its name lies in honor for the peace conference of 1776, a commemoration. Constructed circa 1680 by Captain Christopher Billopp, this 2 story rubble-stone masonry masterpiece has been restored over the years, as needed for structural integrity. Its steep gable roof gives the essence of the period. By 1934, much work had been completed including the Colonial Rose Garden and planting 13 trees to represent the original colonies. House tours are offered Friday-Sunday at 1 pm. In the midst of a collection of artifacts from the era, it is almost like stepping back to the time when our great country was still forming. The beauty and serenity overpower you while walking the grounds. Spring and summer bring the vivid colors of the trees to life. Why not stop for a minute to quite literally “smell the roses”? When the sun is descending, gaze over to the waterfront to enjoy the unparalleled sunset that exudes tangerine hues amid a backdrop of amber with scattered tones of violet entice you to just stand in awe of the beauty that is happening right before your eyes.
    South Street Seaport Museum, Manhattan
  207 Front Street - New York, NY            
Gazing down the skyline, you might just find yourself lost in the distracting beauty of the breathtaking views. Ships sailing by, the sounds of waves churning off the schooners, this New York City museum takes you back to the time when trade and travel was all done by sea. Located in this vast historical district, a treasure trove of maritime history, lies some of the oldest buildings in Manhattan boasting renovations to mercantile buildings, ships and even the former Fulton Fish Market. Nearby you will also find a few modern tourist malls, although you might not want to venture too far as there are many things at this Manhattan museum that spark the curiosity of many a passerby. Located within the South Street Seaport Museum you will find a working 19th Century print shop, a craft center where wood carvers and model builders demonstrate their skills, much to the delight of visitors. Some might say the most impressive thing here is the privately owned fleet of historic ships, the largest such fleet in the United States. Similarly on display is an outstanding collection of model ships. Come and support maritime history and enjoy some of the many beautiful buildings, great food and street performers. A new experience bound to leave you longing to come back.
    New York City Fire Museum, Manhattan
  278 Spring Street - New York, NY              
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Some of the bravest men and women in all the world are those who serve the community as fire fighters. The New York City Fire Museum pays homage to these public servants through a variety of art, artifacts and tributes to the fire fighters throughout history. Inside, visitors will find displays on all aspects of the firefighting legacy from the pictures and guidebooks of the very first volunteer firefighting brigades to the gear used by modern departments. The museum features real life engines and horse-drawn vehicles giving you a chance to see the progress of technology throughout history. The museum also plays home to a very special 9/11 tribute exhibit which keeps the memories of those brave souls who fought and died. Spring 2012 has additions to the 9/11 tribute with special displays made commemorating the emergency service workers that gave their lives on 9/11. Another Spring display includes the “Remembering Their Prayers” exhibit, a special tributes from the friends and family surrounding that tragic day. The New York City Fire Museum is a cornerstone to the valor and honor of these New York firefighters, an American legacy.
    Brooklyn Museum of Art
  200 Eastern Parkway - Brooklyn, NY             
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The Brooklyn Museum of Art is a living edifice dedicated to, yes, paintings and sculptures, but also a collection of some of the greatest innovators and visionaries ever to grace the world. Located within the 560,000-square-foot Beaux-Arts building, the Brooklyn Museum of Art is one of the oldest and largest art museums in the entire country. Inside, visitors are greeted by some of the most amazing artwork from artists such as Andy Warhol, Fred Tomaselli, Lorna Simpson and more. Guest lectures and special demonstrations are constantly available, which gives the patrons a firsthand look at how some of this wonderful artwork has been created. The beauty of the Brooklyn Museum of Art is not just the work inside but the availability of traveling exhibits that frequent it as well. In Summer 2012, the Brooklyn Museum of Art will be featuring the works of Keith Haring, The New York Journalism of Djuna Barnes, and the spectacular collection of Ancient Egyptian sculptures and amulets known as “Body Parts.” Along with the Botanical Gardens and various other attractions, the Brooklyn Museum of Art is amongst the centerpieces of culture in Brooklyn and in the world.
    Waterfront Museum
  5816 Clarendon Road - Brooklyn, NY             
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Housed aboard the 1914 Lehigh Valley Barge #79, a visit to this New York City museum will definitely leave you standing on your sea legs. Take a step into a little slice of history. Learn about maritime heritage and the importance of the great water highway for commerce. With public access to waterfront piers and recreational activities a plenty, there is never a dull moment here, you might even catch a show. Admission is free! This great place strives to make things available free and low cost to the public. With the amount of amazing art, community support, involvement and opportunities that this Brooklyn museum provides, you might consider giving a donation. Across the way, at the nearby Redhook Homeport, stands a beautiful garden, a stunning pier where the ocean seems never ending and the most picturesque view of the sunset over Lady Liberty that you will find anywhere. A must for summer 2012 travelers. Vacation photos will make you the envy of all your friends. So come down today and experience the wonder that is the Waterfront Museum of Brooklyn. On your way home, do not forget to stop by Steve's Authentic Key Lime Pie, a true treat just one tenth of a mile away and an easy walk after a beautiful day.
    Museum for African Art, Queens
  36-01 43rd Avenue, 3rd Floor - Long Island City, Qu           
One of the most diverse cultures in the United States is the African-American. The Museum for African Art is a Queens museum that has taken the big step in solidifying a visual link between African society and the general populous by offering the best work on display to the public. This New York City museum has over 70 exhibitions, all showcasing the beauty and diversity of African art and constantly rotates their selections. It is also highly interactive with the public, housing an education department dedicated to enlightening people and helping to bring a better understanding about the African culture. While there, you may want to participate in one of the several hands-on workshops, take in a lecture from your favorite African artists, or perhaps sit down and watch a film series on one of many African topics. Most recently, the museum has constructed a whole theater program with the intention of further extending African knowledge through a wide variety of African live performances and visual arts. If you are intrigued by the depth of African society and want to see the very best displays of work from that society then make a stop into the Museum for African Art.
    Bronx Museum Of The Arts
  1040 Grand Concourse - Bronx, NY             
The Bronx Museum of the Arts (BxMA) is re-envisioning the role of museums in contemporary society: it addresses the changing needs of its diverse constituencies, while standing at the forefront of scholarly discourse, museum practices, and innovative public programs. As such, BxMA is recognized as "an important player in shaping New York art of both the present and the future" (The New York Times).
The Bronx Museum was founded in 1971 by a group of local residents to bring the visual arts to the Bronx. It has remained the only fine art museum in the Bronx. In its first decade, it was housed in the public rotunda of the Bronx County Courthouse located on Grand Concourse and 161st Street. In 1982, it moved five blocks north on the Concourse to 165th street into a former synagogue purchased and donated by the City of New York.
    Staten Island Children's Museum
  1000 Richmond Terrace - Staten Island, NY            
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The Staten Island Children's Museum appeals to the intrepid explorer in every child. Interactive exhibitions and creative workshops offer plenty of opportunities for hands-on, first hand experiences that nurture children's natural curiosity and creativity. Visits to the museum launch children on a voyage of discovery - about themselves and the world around them.
    New York Transit Museum
  Corner of Boerum Place and Schermerhorn Street - Brooklyn, NY            
Do you love trains? Did you ever wonder about how the subway system was developed? Do you love seeing a part of New York that has influenced the world? If you answered yes to any of these questions then the New York Transit Museum is for you. This Cadman Plaza tourist attraction is home to one of the most uniquely vast transportation histories in the world. A visit to this museum gives you an opportunity to experience firsthand what this historic transit system is all about. Housed within ist walls are many different subway cars, engines and displays, all with their own story, and all showcasing the rich history of New York City transit. One can marvel in yesteryear with the ads from the early 1900s or discover the secrets of conduction, filtering and green energy through the interactive displays. The museum also offers full workshops and guided tours where patrons can further their knowledge and experience live the evolution of one of the most written about phenomenon in the world. This free Brooklyn Museum is open to the public and truly showcases how great Brooklyn has become in enriching its visitors and discovering the culture of New York City.
    Godwin-Ternbach Museum, Queens
  65-30 Kissena Blvd. - Queens College - Flushing, NY           
The Godwin-Ternbach Museum is a professional not-for-profit art institution situated on the Flushing, Queens campus of Queens College, the City University of New York. A comprehensive permanent collection of 3,500 objects from all cultures, ranging from the ancient world to the present day, is used to organize exhibitions and programs as cultural and educational vehicles for students, faculty and public audiences alike. Presentations of contemporary and historical significance alternate between showcases of the collection and special exhibitions. Founded in 1981 by art historian Frances Godwin and noted art restorer Joseph Ternbach, the Museum's mission has grown with the changing times from a teaching museum for the benefit of art students to a public museum that reaches out beyond the college campus.
    Prospect Park Zoo
  450 Flatbush Avenue - Brooklyn, NY            
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Let your wild side reign free as you explore the many faces of some very unique creatures at this Brooklyn museum of life. Venture deep into the jungle as you see the animals up close. Dare to spend the day with the valor of a lion roaming with his pride. A family spending time together, appreciating nature in all its ferocious glory is what this NYC museum is all about. Take the children to the discovery center where they can try their hand at some basic veterinary skills while conducting check-ups on real live animals. Then, head over to the young naturalist camping area, cook food on a "campfire", and explore using field guides for animals that one might see on a camping trip. Feeling the urge to feed some of the animals’ springtime is the perfect time to head over and feed the sea lions - they just love the attention too. Weekends are an ideal time to visit as you can chat live with the zookeepers and learn how they care for the animals. Maybe even find out what your favorite animal does when you're not there. Overall, this taste of the wild offers a wide variety of things to do, see and learn. Spring/Summer 2012 is a great time to come see this gem.
    P.S.1 Contemporary Art Center, Queens
  22-15 Jackson Ave. - Long Island City, NY           
P.S.1 Contemporary Art Center, an affiliate of The Museum of Modern Art, is the oldest and second largest non-profit arts center in the United States solely devoted to contemporary art. Recognized as a defining force of the alternative space movement, P.S.1 stands out from major arts institutions through its cutting-edge approach to exhibitions and direct involvement of artists within a scholarly framework. It acts as an intermediary between the artist and its audience. Functioning as a living and active meeting place for the general public, P.S.1 is a catalyst for ideas, discourses and new trends in contemporary art and its practices.
    New York Hall of Science, Queens
  47-01 111th St. - Flushing, NY              
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As you approach the New York Hall of Science Museum, you will be awed by the visual appeal of the large, rounded entrance featuring an array of windows, enhancing the open feel. Upon entering, you will be drawn into a quizzical world of wonder, exploration and exhibits for every age level. The fun starts with a Pre-School area where children can make music, play with trains or turn a crank to see the process of a pulley system and leads to hearing a story at the Science and Technology Library. Here, parents and children can bond over many great learning experiences. Sharing in hands-on activities brings a sense of closeness as you watch the wonder in your child’s eyes turn to amazement as they learn a myriad of new things in the educationally stimulating environment this Queens’ museum offers. Occupying one of the few remaining structures of the 1964 New York World’s Fair, it stands alone as New York’s only inter-active science and technology center. Other features of the museum include the Science Playground and Rocket Park Mini Golf. Bring the family out for a fun filled day on Long Island of learning, fun and quality time.
    Museum of Modern Art Queens, Queens
  45-20 33 Street at Queens Blvd - Long Island City, NY           
If you are looking for more than just a museum and instead are looking for an educational center that inspires minds and promotes creativity, then look no further than Queens own Museum of Modern Art. The Museum of Modern Art is a short drive from anywhere in New York and provides an impressive look at a wide variety of modern art ranging from portraits to digital media with the concept of providing a bridge between the established social norms and the wildly experimental. Much of this museum promotes first-hand experiences with the artwork and gives the patrons a direct link to the artists. In summer 2012, the museum will be featuring another sampling of modern art with work set to be featured by Alighiero Boetti, the Quay Brothers, Alina Szapocznikow and more. The beauty of these incoming works is that each other pushes the boundaries of what typical art is and instead provides the catalyst for an acceptance of something new and exciting. The Museum of Modern Art is one of the few museums in the world that promotes something different as well as offering you the opportunity to witness, close up, the evolution of art.
    Maritime Industry Museum
  6 Pennyfield Ave. - Bronx, NY           
Also known as The Fort Schuyler Museum, this Bronx museum is housed on the campus at SUNY (State University of New York). Visitors enter through the Fort’s sally port, a tiny door that leads you back into maritime history. Once you step through this time portal, you can almost hear the wind in the sails, with a few “Aye Aye Captain” hollers thrown in. This museum is filled with one of the largest collections of maritime materials. The chronologically displayed exhibits provide a great experience of the history of the maritime industry. The underwater exhibit is filled with artifacts recovered from sunken ships around New York. On the second deck, you will find a bounty of art, paintings and artifacts from the early days of sea travel to the most recent merchant marine. The Promenade entrance offers the visual appeal of models of the Reliance, Hansa, Breman and many more. A perfect place for a father-son outing, or a day of maritime education and adventure for any interested in the history of trade, travel and sea adventure, this is a real treasure chest of knowledge. The interesting gift shop called the “Slop Chest” offers many unique treasures and trinkets to commemorate your adventure.