Best Bad-Weather Museums in New York City

There’s something so magical about rainy and snowy days in New York… as long as you can spend them indoors gazing out the window to the inclement weather outside, that is! Here are five of my favorite museums to while away stormy afternoons.

The Metropolitan Museum of Art

The Met has been one of my favorite museums ever since I can remember, and I never get tired of wandering the galleries. The Temple of Dendur is my favorite place to find a seat along the temple walls and people-watch (or re-read From the Mixed-Up Files of Mrs. Basil E. Frankweiler) with Central Park in the background. There is something almost magical about watching the rain stream down the glass. If the Temple of Dendur isn’t to your taste, or is too crowded, there are dozens of other hideaways within the museum, from the Impressionists Wing to the Arms & Armory gallery.

The Morgan Library

My husband and I exchanged our first-ever Christmas gifts on one of those snowy, slushy days of winter at the Morgan, and it will always have a piece of my heart. Stepping into the Morgan feels like stepping into old New York. The Museum’s beautiful permanent collection, as well as their well-researched and presented temporary exhibitions, make a visit off Museum Mile very worthwhile. I find the library especially to be so captivating–I could curl up with a book right there and be perfectly content.

Cooper Hewitt

I love the light in this old mansion and the amazing permanent collection. Their cafe is the perfect spot to watch the rain fall into the garden, and their fantastic collection is always worth a visit. There are quite a few interactive elements within the museum–perfect if you have younger members of your group!

The Frick

Even though The Frick is on the small side for a museum, I’ve never found it difficult to spend hours losing myself in the beautiful collection. The courtyard in the center of the museum is one of the truly quiet places in Manhattan–a great place to restore your equilibrium!

The New York Public Library

Okay, this is cheating a bit, as technically the New York Public Library isn’t a museum… but the Stephen A. Schwartzman building on 42nd Street does have exhibits, so I’m going to count it! In addition to their exhibits, there are thousands and thousands of books, rooms dedicated to genealogy and local history to maps and rare books and everything in between, and plenty of space to relax. If you are not a New York City resident, you can get a three-day library card which will allow you to use their computers and have full access to the library! Plus, if you get hungry, there are plenty of places a quick walk away for a snack or a full meal.

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