Museums in Manhattan

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In the 19th century, the Tenderloin district of New York City lured visitors with bordellos, dance halls, and saloons. These days, the area houses the Museum of Sex, which explores the historical and cultural significance of the types of human sexuality considered taboo in the Tenderloin era. The more than 15,000 sexual artifacts in the museum's permanent collection include vintage vibrators, period photography, and copies of Playboy's predecessor, Philandering Archduke. Rotating exhibitions also delve into current sexual scholarship; past exhibits have explored the history of condoms, sexuality in 1930s comics, and Japanese erotic art.

After exploring the museum's galleries, visitors can reenergize with a bite or a drink from the museum's in-house bar, which blends traditional aphrodisiacs into cocktails. Suggestively named naughty sex kits are also available in the museum's store, alongside artwork and contraceptives.

233 5th Ave.
New York,
NY
US

Collecting from the darkest depths of the ocean, beneath layered bedrock, or from the farthest reaches of space, the American Museum of Natural History catalogues, studies, and shares the latest knowledge about the natural world. The Museum's famed permanent halls explore an array of topics, from human ancestry throughout the ages to deep history of lands ruled by dinosaurs. The Museum’s far-reaching educational programs extend beyond the permanent exhibits and the confines of the building, reaching into middle and high schools to fund and conduct hands-on, student-driven experiments. The Museum also supports scientific expeditions around the world, providing archeologists and paleontologists with essential supplies and Indiana Jones Halloween masks.

200 Central Park S
New York,
NY
US

Ground Zero Museum Workshop founder and official photographer at Ground Zero for the Unifomed Firefighters Association, Gary Marlon Suson aims to lend education and comfort to locals and visitors with a photo exhibition documenting nearly nine months of the Ground Zero Recovery. As various artifacts culled from the site's rubble complement an image collection lauded by the New York Times, the space stands as a permanent museum detailing the buildings, victims, heroes, and aftermath of the tragedy. To further its cause, Ground Zero Museum Workshop donates all raised funds and proceeds to benefit three special charities relating to the 9/11 attacks.

420 W 14th St
New York,
NY
US

Unlike more traditional museums, Discovery Times Square does much more than simply display artifacts. The space, located in the building once occupied by the New York Times printing presses, encourages visitors to learn through interactive, sensory exhibits. Past shows have taken guests inside the Titanic?s final wreck site, Da Vinci?s ingenious inventions, and the vast collection of riches and bandages owned by King Tut. More than a museum, DTS has featured exhibitions of unparalleled breadth, including Pompeii: The Exhibit, Dead Sea Scrolls: The Exhibition, Terracotta Warriors: Defenders of China?s First Emperor, and most recently The Art of the Brick.

226 W 44th St
New York,
NY
US

New York City has her bustling waterways to thank for a rich history of art, industry, and cultural development?perhaps more than any other factor. The sea carried in a stream of tens of millions of immigrants and fueled the industrial age in one of the country?s most accessible portals to the world. South Street Seaport Museum?s massive gallery space in Schermerhorn Row Block pays tribute to a bygone age while bridging it to the city?s modern aquatic-shipping and transport industry. Some exhibits illuminate the past, such as the pseudo-marketplace at Coffee, Fish, and the Tattooed Man and the immaculately preserved hotel at Remains of the Stay, while others highlight modern issues such as the Occupy Wall Street movement.

Weighted with history, the museum?s fleet of tugboats, schooners, and sloops stays stalwartly afloat, each with its own story to tell; built in 1885, the Wavertree was one of the last wrought-iron sailing ships commissioned, and the Pioneer has spent more than 120 years feeding the economy with boatloads of lumber, stone, brick, oyster shells, and tourists. The majestic four-masted bark Peking represents the famous German Flying P-Liners, designed to be crewed entirely by birds.

12 Fulton St
New York,
NY
US

From a stone mosaic that lined the floors of a 5th-century synagogue to the final rhyme spit out by a Jewish hip-hop artist, the span of the Jewish Museum's collections is as diverse as it is expansive. What began in 1904 with 26 artifacts has blossomed into a collection of 27,000 paintings, sculptures, and multimedia exhibits that together present a collage of art and Jewish culture from across centuries and continents.

The centerpiece of the Museum is Culture and Continuity: The Jewish Journey, a permanent exhibition teeming with artifacts, videos, and art that collectively celebrate Jewish identity and the culture's ability to persevere through sometimes tragic circumstances. Artists?from 20th century French master ?douard Vuillard to contemporary American painter Kehinde Wiley?enliven the galleries in rotating exhibitions.

Interactive exhibits such as the Archaeology Zone bring kids within earshot of ancient times as they don ancient costumes and weigh, magnify, and analyze vessels just like anthropologists or careful ancient housewares shoppers. Family activities include holiday-themed art classes and workshops, and The Wind Up series invites adults into the Museum for an after-hours menagerie of cutting-edge music, film, and theatre. After a day of soaking up history, attendees can nosh at Lox at Caf? Weissman, a certified-kosher caf? whose stained glass windows shed light on the edible portion of the Jewish journey.

1109 5th Ave.
New York,
NY
US

Manhattan Scene