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Updated by Joanna James on Dec 12, 2020
Headline for 05 Unusual Museums in New York – Intriguing & Captivating Discoveries
Joanna James Joanna James
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05 Unusual Museums in New York – Intriguing & Captivating Discoveries

While New York is famed for its Museum of Modern Art and American Museum of Natural History, this cosmopolitan city has more "unusual" museums too. They may not be in every guidebook but warrant a visit the next time you are in the Big Apple.


The Museum of Food and Drink

Foodies can not only savour eclectic dishes when in New York but also learn more about food at this unique attraction. The Museum of Food and Drink features a small space called the MoFAD Lab in Brooklyn, while it hosts events and programmes at other venues too. The small space offers some enthralling insights into food, the way it's created and its connections to culture. You get changing exhibitions covering diverse aspects of food, while sometimes you will get to sample dishes as part of events that include tastings.


The Museum of the American Gangster

Those fascinated by organised crime can visit the Museum of the American Gangster; in fact, this two-room museum in the East Village is located upstairs from a historic speakeasy dating back to the Prohibition era. Easy to reach for those staying at a Fifth Avenue hotel, the museum offers riveting information on gangsters the likes of Al Capone and John Gotti. Apart from showcasing everything from vintage shotguns to Prohibition-era photographs, it also has special exhibits; these include the death masks of John Dillinger and the shell casings taken from the final shootout involving Bonnie and Clyde!


The New York City Fire Museum

Delve into the history of firefighting at the New York City Fire Museum which also serves as a reminder of those who risk their lives every day. Located on Spring Street, a short cab ride from properties like Citadines Connect Fifth Avenue New York, this museum is housed in a former firehouse. On a visit, you will learn the story of the New York City Fire Department (or FDNY) and can see a diverse collection including firefighting memorabilia, equipment and uniforms. Also of note, is a memorial to those that lost their lives in the terror attacks of September 11th, 2001.


The Met Cloisters

Part of The Metropolitan Museum of Art, The Met Cloisters enjoys an idyllic location in Fort Tryon Park overlooking the Hudson River. The focus here is on the architecture and art of medieval Europe and the site features a medieval-style building and gardens which make the experience even more unique. The museum's extensive collection showcases items dating back between the 12th and 15th centuries and include tapestries, stained glass, metalwork, illuminated manuscripts and more.


The National Museum of Mathematics

Those who consider math boring are bound to change their minds on a visit to the National Museum of Mathematics! Situated near Madison Square Park, this museum also referred to as MoMath, has a range of galleries and interactive exhibits that make learning fun and show just how exciting math can be. Highlights include the chance to use a square-wheeled trike, embark on a virtual ride along a Möbius strip and create vibrant patterns on a digital canvas.