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MET Museum – what to expect, tickets, prices, exhibits, timings, FAQs

The Metropolitan Museum of Art, also known as the MET, is the largest art museum in the United States.

MET Museum opened to the public in 1880 and has grown to cover more than two million square feet.

The Met’s collection consists of more than 2 million works of art, including paintings, sculptures, decorative arts, textiles, photographs, and artifacts from various cultures and periods spread over 5,000 years.

The collection encompasses art from ancient Egypt, classical antiquity, European masters, Islamic art, Asian art, African art, and American art.

This article covers everything you must know before booking tickets for the MET Museum.

What to expect

Explore New York’s most valuable landmark, boasting over two million works of art and artifacts from ancient Greece and Egypt, Modern art from Europe, and much more.

Embark on a journey through 5 continents and 5,000 years of art at the Metropolitan Museum of Art.

The tour begins in Ancient Egypt, where you’ll see perfectly preserved tombs tiny dioramas, and learn about their burial rituals in the Egyptian mummies area. You’ll also meet the Met’s mascot, “William.”

Discover the Temple of Dendur, a temple of Ancient Egypt located in the middle of Central Park, and hear fascinating stories about this exhibit and how Jackie O procured it for the Met.

Encounter the armor worn by Britain’s infamous King Henry VIII, the Antioch Chalice, and beautifully carved Bisj poles from Papua New Guinea collected by a Rockefeller at the cost of his life.

While listening to tales of ingenious artists, marvel at fully intact Roman ruins from Pompeii and paintings by Raphael, Rembrandt, Vermeer, and Picasso.

Immerse yourself in Claude Monet’s dreamy “Water Lilies,” admire Vincent Van Gogh’s expressive works, and find inspiration in Rodin’s bronze of “The Thinker.”

Let a professional and experienced guide take you through the Great Halls and all the most popular galleries.


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Where to book tickets

Tickets for the Metropolitan Museum of Art are available to be purchased at the museum or online in advance.

Online ticket prices tend to be cheaper than tickets at the attraction.

When you buy online, you can avoid the long queues at the attraction’s ticket counters and enjoy a hassle-free experience.

Booking online also helps avoid last-minute disappointment and delays.

How do online tickets work

Go to the MET Museum booking page, select your preferred date, and the number of tickets, and buy the tickets right away.

After the purchase, you will receive the tickets via email.

You don’t need to carry printouts.

You can show the e-ticket on your smartphone when you visit the attraction.

MET Museum ticket prices

Adult tickets for the Best of the Metropolitan Museum Guided Tour are available for US$59 to visitors aged 15 and above.

For children between two and 14 years, the tickets cost US$49.

Infants under two years can get in for free.

Adult tickets for the Extended Tour of the Metropolitan Museum of Art can be purchased for US$74 for visitors aged 15 and above.

Tickets for children between two and 14 years are available for US$64.

Infants under two years can get in for free.

MET Museum Guided Tour tickets

MET Museum tickets
When you buy MET Museum tickets at the venue, you get a physical ticket like this (in pic). However, we recommend you buy your tickets online to avoid wasting time in long ticket counter queues. Image: Dohadmac

Book this two-hour guided tour and explore the best of the MET museum in New York.

Get skip-the-line tickets and enjoy a hassle-free experience without wasting time standing in long lines!

Explore the museum’s most fascinating exhibits in small groups of up to 15 people.

Your ticket includes a museum donation, so there is no need to wait in long access lines or pay the suggested donation inside.

Experience the best of the museum with a knowledgeable guide, be enriched by fascinating stories, and learn about the exhibits.

Ticket Prices
Adult Ticket (15+ years): US$59
Child Ticket (2 to 14 years): US$49
Infant Ticket (up to 1 year): Free

MET Museum Extended Tour tickets

Guided tours at MET Museum
A guided tour in progress at the MET Museum. Image: Metmuseum.org

Experience a comprehensive introduction to the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City through a guided tour that spans five continents and 5,000 years of art.

This private three-hour guided tour lets visitors have a seamless and personal experience at the museum.

This ticket gives skip-the-line access to the MET museum and lets visitors save time during their trip to NYC.

Enjoy the company of a passionate historian as your guide, who will provide fascinating anecdotes about the art on display and the surrounding city instead of boring facts and figures.

Have exclusive access to the Met’s rooftop terrace when it’s open from May to October.

The ticket also includes a museum donation, so there is no need to wait in long access lines or pay the suggested donation inside.

Ticket Prices
Adult Ticket (15+ years): US$74
Child Ticket (2 to 14 years): US$64
Infant Ticket (up to 1 year): Free


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How to reach

The Metropolitan Museum of Art is located at the eastern edge of Central Park in New York City.

Address: 1000 5th Ave, New York, NY 10028, USA. Get Directions

You can reach the Museum of the City of New York by public transport or car.

By Bus

5 Ave/E 80 St is the nearest bus stop to the MET Museum.

Take the M1, M2, or M3 bus.

By Subway

Get down at the 86 St station, which is serviceable by lines 4, 5, and 6.

By Car

If you’re driving by car, turn on Google Maps and get started!

The Met Museum’s parking garage on Fifth Avenue and 80th Street is open throughout the year.

For up to three hours, the parking costs US$39, and for up to five hours US$45.


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Timings

The MET Museum is open every day of the week except Wednesdays.

The museum opens at 10 am on all days of operation and closes at 5 pm from Sunday to Thursday.

However, the museum extends its opening hours on Fridays and Saturdays until 9 pm.

How long does the MET Museum take

Visitors spend around three to five hours on average to explore what’s on display at the Metropolitan Museum of Art.

Due to the enormous size of the museum, it may not be possible to explore it fully in a single day.

Tourists who have been to art museums multiple times say that art fatigue sets in after approximately 2 hours of roaming around.

Best time to visit

We suggest booking your tour on a weekday when the museum is less busy for a more enjoyable visit.

Mornings and late evenings have fewer visitors, and you can visit peacefully.

Weekends and public holidays are the most crowded at the attraction.

The Big Apple Pass includes tickets to a 60-minute Statue of Liberty cruise, the Empire State Building, and the Metropolitan Museum of Art. You also get a 10% discount code, which you can use (five times!) to get discounts on future purchases


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Free entry with City passes

Buying a Discount Card is the best way to gain free entry into The Metropolitan Museum of Art.

When you buy discount cards such as NYC Explorer Pass and New York Pass you pay once and then access a pre-determined number of attractions for free.

All the discount cards mentioned above include free access to The Met Museum.

Need help with which art museum to visit? Check out which is better, Met Museum or MOMA.


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Met Museum’s audio guide

Met Museum’s audio guide includes over 3,000 recordings and is a great tool for exploring the 5,000 years of art on display.

Visitor with Met Museum's audio guide

Visitors can use the audio guide to explore highlights of The Met collection in ten languages – English, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Mandarin, Portuguese, Russian, and Spanish.

Audio players come with volume control and headsets. Neck loops for hearing aids with T–switches are also available on request.

Audio guide players are available for rent at the Met Museum entrance.

Image: Metmuseum.org

They are also available at the entrances of its two other sister Museums – The Met Cloisters and The Met Breuer.


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Exhibits

With so many extraordinary artifacts on display at the MET Museum in New York, it is challenging to handpick a few.

We list out ten of the most popular exhibits of the art museum.

Washington Crossing the Delaware

Washington Crossing the Delaware at The Met
Image: Metmuseum.org

Year: 1851

This piece of art is considered a patriotic statement, just like its subject matter.

Emanuel Leutze depicted George Washington and the Continental Army on Christmas Eve in 1776.

Self–portrait with a Straw Hat

Year: 1887

This painting is one of the earliest Van Gogh self-portraits, where he uses lighter colors and pointillist techniques.

Madonna and Child

Year: ca. 1290 – 1300

Duccio di Buoninsegna’s Madonna and Child, or Stoclet Madonna, has only been widely acknowledged as his work for the past century and accessible to scholars for only half a century.

The Dance Class

Year: 1874

Edgar Degas spent precious time observing the ballerinas in their proper form at the Paris Opera House during the 1870s.

The painting displays a group of ballerinas getting ready for a class with ballet master Jules Perrot.

Aristotle with a Bust of Homer

Year: 1653

Rembrandt van Rijn displays the ancient Greek philosopher Aristotle wearing exotic clothes and a gold chain, a present from his pupil.

In the painting, he has his hand resting on a bust of Homer.

Ugolino and His Sons

Ugolino and His Sons at The Met
Image: Metmuseum.org

Year: 1865–67

Jean–Baptiste Carpeaux’s sculpture displays an incident from Canto XXXIII of Dante’s Inferno, where Count Ugolino, with his sons and grandsons, is left to starve in the tower of Pisa.

Relief Panel

Year: ca. 883–859 BC

This massive stone slab was part of a wall panel from the Northwest Palace at Nimrud.

The handcrafted lower half lists the military accomplishments of Assyrian King Ashurnasirpal II.

The Attitudes of Animals in Motion

Year: 1881

Eadweard Muybridge wanted to record a galloping horse while wishing to determine whether all four hooves could be off the ground at one point in time.

While doing so, he created this piece of stop–action photography.

Madonna and Child Enthroned with Saints

Year: ca. 1504

The Madonna and Child Enthroned with Saints, also known as the Colonna Altarpiece, is currently the only altarpiece by Raphael in the United States.

The Temple of Dendur

The Temple of Dendur at The Met
Image: World.wng.org

Year: 10 BC

This Egyptian temple was presented to the United States in 1965 after the Army Corps of Engineers saved it from the rising waters of the Nile.

The museum has a custom-built gallery to display the temple.


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Activities for kids and families

Kids can discover fun facts about various masterpieces at MET.

They can also get into the Met Fifth Avenue’s time machine, watch behind-the-scenes archived videos, and work on their creative projects.

1. Nolen Library

Nolen Library welcomes readers of all ages to consult various materials about The Met’s collection, exhibitions, and art history.

2. Audio Guide for Kids

The Audio Guide for Kids features thirteen tours, perfect for kids 6 to 12.

Artworks throughout all of the major areas of the Museum are included in these kids’ tours.

3. Children’s Classes

For kids, MET organizes classes by professional educators and artists who use the whole Met Museum (from studios to galleries) as an expanded classroom.

FAQs about the Metropolitan Museum of Art

Here are some questions visitors usually ask before visiting the MET Museum.

What are some of the highlights of the MET’s collection?

Some of the highlights of the MET’s collection include ancient Egyptian artifacts, European paintings, American decorative arts, and Asian art.

How big is the Metropolitan Museum of Art collection?

The museum boasts New York’s largest and most comprehensive art collection, featuring over 1.5 million works of art spanning 5,000 years of history.

What is the MET Cloisters?

The MET Cloisters, located in Upper Manhattan, is a branch of the MET that is dedicated to showcasing the art and architecture of medieval Europe.

Is the Metropolitan Museum of Art wheelchair accessible?

The museum is fully accessible for visitors who use wheelchairs. People with disabilities can use mobility devices in all areas open to the public. They can also borrow manual wheelchairs from the coat check at the 81st Street entrance on a first-come, first-served basis.

Is photography allowed inside the Metropolitan Museum of Art?

Yes, visitors are allowed to take photographs inside the museum. However, the use of flash photography is prohibited.

Is there a gift shop at the Metropolitan Museum of Art?

Yes, the MET has a gift shop where visitors can purchase souvenirs, books, and other items related to the museum’s collection.

Does the Metropolitan Museum of Art have any restaurants?

Visitors can enjoy meals or snacks at several restaurants and cafes. Members and Patrons receive a 10% discount at all public restaurants in The Met Fifth Avenue and The Met Cloisters.

Does the MET offer guided tours?

Yes, the museum offers guided tours of its collection. Audio guides are also available at the museum.

Can visitors bring backpacks to the Metropolitan Museum of Art?

Yes, visitors are allowed to bring backpacks into the museum. However, larger backpacks and suitcases must be checked.

Does the Metropolitan Museum of Art have a coat check?

Yes, the museum has a coat check where visitors can leave their coats and bags. However, visitors cannot store large camera equipment at the coat check.

Sources

# Metmuseum.org
# Wikipedia.org
# Britannica.com
# Tripadvisor.com

The travel specialists at TheBetterVacation.com use only high-quality sources while researching & writing their articles. We make every attempt to keep our content current, reliable and trustworthy.

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Edited by Rekha Rajan & fact checked by Jamshed V Rajan

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