May 18, 2010

Happy International Museum Day!

Museums are wonderful things, full of interesting stuff to look at and read, sometimes to hear and touch and experience and use and do!

Museum pictured above: Osaka Maritime Museum, Japan

Check out your community and nearby towns. Can you find a children's museum? An art museum? Science museums? History museums?

Maybe there is a historical landmark nearby. Do any nearby schools and universities have exhi
bit areas? Look for small, oddball museums.

Boston Children's Museum

Sometimes they don't cost much—or maybe they're free!—and they may not have usual hours—some are by appointment only. Those sorts of tiny museums are often a labor of love by someone who is enthusiastic about a subject, and they can be very interesting to check out!

Here are
a few Southern Californian museums:
  • La Habra Children's Museum (La Habra ) – lots of hands-on stuff, including a stage and costumes, a carousel, and a real bus and train's caboose.
  • Museum of Jurassic Technology (LA) – a rather weird collection that includes floral radiographs, microminiature sculptures that fit in the eye of a needle or on the head of a pin, and even decaying dice.
  • Getty Center (LA) – a fabulous building, fabulous gardens and fountains, plus fabulous art displays, this museum features some of the most famous names in fine art (Van Gogh, Monet, Leonardo da Vinci, Michelangelo, and many more).
  • Autry Museum (LA) – the history of the Old West and of the movies and TV shows that made the West famous, explored with some really wonderful exhibits. There is a weekly Gold Rush program, a replica stagecoach kids can climb into, and a movie-magic exhibit in which kids can star in a chase scene!
  • San Bernardino County Museum (Redlands) – Want to visit a room full of taxidermied birds, collected eggs in drawers, and a bird song wall? There are also collections of fossils, mammals, gemstones, and much more.
There are only about a million more great museums near me – and hopefully some great ones near you! If you can't visit one today, maybe you can make a bucket list of the top 5 museums in your area you want to visit someday soon, and the top 5 in the country or world you'd like to visit someday in your life.

Here Are a Few Virtual Museums
  • The Louvre (Paris, France) is one of the world's best museums. Here's the “Virtual Tour” link.
  • I've already raved about how fantastic the British Museum (London, U.K.) is. Here's a website dedicated to online tours of the museum.
  • The Museum of Science in Boston, Massachusetts, has some cool online “exhibits.” I loved the Scanning Electron Microscope exhibit.
  • One of the best (and most cluttered!) museums I've ever been to is the Victoria and Albert Museum in London, U.K. You can do a virtual tour of the V & A "Museum of Childhood."
Museum above:
Seattle Art Museum

Tibet Museum in Lhasa

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