This Month’s Featured Article

The Museum Road Trip – Taking in the Sights, From New York to Florida

By Published On: May 2nd, 2023

There’s no arguing that New York City has some of the best museums in the United States. One may maintain that the Metropolitan Museum of Art is the cream of the crop. It has two iconic locations, with the main museum stationed at 1000 Fifth Avenue and The Met at The Cloisters located at Fort Tryon Park.

Certainly that could be up for debate among those in the art world, but there’s no arguing that the Met’s 20 curatorial themes offered to museumgoers are worthy of its golden reputation. They include: African Art; American Art (inclusive of an “ever-evolving collection,” according to, of African American, Euro American, Native American, and Latin American Art); Ancient Near Eastern Art; Arms and Armor; Asian Art; Costumes; European Paintings, Sculpture and Decorative Arts; Greek and Roman Art; Islamic Art; Photographs; and Musical Instruments. The collections are so vast that viewers could easily get lost in the 2.2-million square foot space. 

But there are many other, dare we say lesser-known museums that dot the eastern seaboard of our US map, along with a number that may be more familiar to many of our readers. We here at Main Street Magazine thought it might be fun in this month’s transportation issue to share some of those spots with you, to help you gear up for your next museum road trip. 

So buckle up as we hit the road and head south from the Empire State to the Sunshine State and peek into some of those museums that are more familiar and some of those that tend to be off-the-beaten-path – we promise you won’t be disappointed!

Storm King Art Center

Before exiting the Hudson Valley, it would behoove you to make a quick stop by the Storm King Art Center. It promises a world-class artistic experience unique to the Hudson Valley – to leave the area without enjoying this outdoor museum spread out across a 500-acre park would be a missed opportunity. 

Storm King was dreamed up in 1960, as a larger-than-life way to experience large-scale sculpture that’s site-specific. The pieces that are lucky enough to grace the majestic mountain rest under open skies; some are hidden among the hills and meadows. The art is to be witnessed in the natural landscapes of the Hudson Valley. The exhibits rotate and the programs change, keeping things fresh and interesting at the outdoor museum. 

A nonprofit, Storm King Art Center was founded by two benefactors and opened in 1960 in Mountainville, NY. According to its website,, the art center was originally intended to become a museum “devoted to Hudson River School painting [but] by 1961 its founders had become committed to modern sculpture.” 

With the 1967 purchase of 13 pieces from the estate of sculptor David Smith (1906–1965), sculpture became front and center. In the 60 years since, Storm King’s place among the world’s leading sculpture parks has only grown.

Storm King Art Center is located at 1 Museum Road, New Windsor, NY. For more information, call (845) 534-3115 or email

The National 9/11 Memorial & Museum

Of course, it would be impossible to leave New York without a stop at The National 9/11 Memorial & Museum in lower Manhattan. The powerful 110,000-square-foot space teaches visitors about the terrorist attacks on September 11, 2001, at the Twin Towers. 

It also teaches of the 1993 bombing at the World Trade Center. 

A combination of “architecture, archaeology, and history” tells the tale of what occurred in 1993 and in 2001, during what was the worst terrorist attack on US soil, according to the museum’s website,, and “creates an unforgettable encounter with the story of the attacks, their aftermath, and the people who experienced these events.”

The museum is located at 180 Greenwich St., New York, NY, and may be called at (212) 312-8800 for reservations; it may also be emailed at for further details. Admission is free.

Philadelphia Museum of Art

Travel outside of New York, and there are just as many interesting sights, including in Philadelphia, PA, the largest city in the state. Of course, we all know the city is of great historical importance – home to the Liberty Bell and the Declaration of Independence. The Philadelphia Museum of Art is one such worthy attraction to investigate, with many incredible works to view.

Located at 2600 Benjamin Franklin Parkway in Philly, the museum is close to the city center. Current collections include: Contemporary Philadelphia artists on view; Korean artists; Black artists; The Ramayana (The Journey of Rama); Art Depicting Ben Franklin; Grace Kelly’s Royal Wedding Dress; Self-Taught Art; Masks and Face Defenses; and A Place of Celebration. 

There are so many sights and sounds to enjoy in Philly, and we’re not just talking about the cheesesteaks for which the city is known, though that’s certainly something to remember while making the drive down south (and don’t forget to ask for extra onions!). One thing to definitely add to your list, though, is a day trip to the Philly Art Museum – the exhibits are always lively and lovely, and the calendar often has activities that are fun for the entire family. 

For more information make sure to check out its website or call (215) 763-8100.

Marbles Kids Museum

Want to really get your kids to use their marbles during your next road trip and to play smart? Well, then head to downtown Raleigh, NC, and take the whole family to the Marbles Kids Museum, founded in 2007 with the bright idea of getting youngsters to use their brains more and play intelligently.

According to the museum’s website,, its aim is to serve “a diverse population” including families, schools, and community groups with themed exhibits, summer camps, IMAX documentary and feature movies, and special events. The museum seeks to build intellectual, social, and emotional skills in children to make them successful in learning and in life, while promoting sustainability and stewardship that encompasses social equity.

It’s quite a mission and one that we think is worth checking out while winding your way from the Northeast down south if you’ve got little ones in tow. 

For more information on the Marbles Kids Museum, call (919) 834-4040, or stop by 201 East Hargett St., Raleigh, NC.

The High Museum of Art

The High Museum of Art, located at 1280 Peachtree St., NE in Atlanta, GA, is worth the stop when traveling southward toward Florida.  There one can witness some pretty remarkable works of art and get a sense of that which makes the creative mind want to expand beyond our “normal” boundaries and explore other realms and realities. Exhibits at The High often challenge our concepts of what’s what – which is usually a good thing and very often a goal among artists.

In addition to the myriad events and activities at this Atlanta museum, The High has collections that include African Art; American Art; Decorative Art and Design; European Art; Folk and Self-Taught Art; Modern and Contemporary Art; and Photography. 

One exhibit at The High has American artist Roy Lichtenstein’s fabricated painted aluminum House III stationed outside of the museum. The miniature sculpture gives viewers an up-close-and-personal look at what the iconic pop-artist’s image of a quintessential American suburban home should look like.

For more information about The High Museum, call (404) 733-4400 or go to

The Dali Museum

When you finally cross over the state line and reach your destination of sunny Florida, it only makes sense to drive directly toward one of the most surreal museums in the world: The Dali. Celebrating the mustachioed master of surrealism, Spanish painter Salvador Dali, The Dali Museum was founded in St. Pete back in 1982 and has been central to the Tampa Bay arts scene ever since. 

A newly designed modern building by architect Yann Weymouth was unveiled in 2011 and it’s simply breathtaking. There’s also a lovely garden right on the Tampa Bay waterfront, creating an extremely inviting experience for visitors that’s not only educational but completely relaxing and exhilarating. 

For more information about The Dali Museum, located at One Dali Blvd., St. Petersburg, FL, go to or call (727) 823-3767; you may also email for further details. 

Morikami Museum and Japanese Gardens

Before you wrap up your museum road trip, park your car and settle on the sand in the Sunshine State, make sure to take advantage of what is assuredly an unexpected treat in Boca Raton on the border of Delray Beach that many are surprised to discover: the Morikami Museum and Japanese Gardens. These beautiful and tranquil Japanese gardens opened in 1977 and have been delighting those seeking peace in South Florida ever since. 

Visitors to the Morikami can stroll the peaceful sanctuary while enjoying countless ponds and landscapes laden with lush plants, statuary and rock gardens, bonsais and benches. Visitors may also enjoy rotating exhibitions, monthly seasonal tea ceremonies performed in the tea house, and educational outreach programs that share the culture of Japan. 

In the nearly 50 years since it’s been open, the Morikami has been an outpost of Japanese culture and arts in South Florida. “Our mission at Morikami Museum and Japanese Gardens is to engage a diverse audience by presenting Japanese cultural experiences that educate and inspire,” states its website, Make sure to check it out, as it accomplishes its mission beautifully.

You can visit the Morikami Museum and Japanese Gardens at 4000 Morikami Park Rd., Delray Beach, FL, go to their website or call them at (561) 495-0233.