West Virginia State Museum
West Virginia State Museum
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Located in the Cultural Center, this interesting museum traces the history of West Virginia through a series of exhibits containing everything from an extensive collection of antique hats donated by a local school teacher to the telescope George Washington used to survey lands within the state.
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Detailed Reviews: Reviews order informed by descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as cleanliness, atmosphere, general tips and location information.
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5.0
408 reviews
Excellent
324
Very good
72
Average
10
Poor
0
Terrible
2

HeatherE77
Indiana88 contributions
Apr 2021
I learned so much about West Virginia history at this museum. We had the place nearly to ourselves on a chilly Saturday morning. We were warmly greeted by staff and screened for COVID illness with temperature checks. Our kids were each given a scavenger hunt they could complete for a prize. This kept us all motivated to explore sections of the museum we might have otherwise skipped over.

There is a main “highlights” trail to follow in chronological order through history, with side rooms that provide much more detail if desired. Our family spent about 1-1.5 hours here, but you could easily spend longer if you didn't have kids rushing through.

The gift shop was the best of our trip, with a wide range of West Virginia made products to choose from. Admission is free, and parking is free on weekend (metered during the week).
Written April 19, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Boris E
Staunton, VA814 contributions
Jun 2021
West Virginia State Museum truly impressed me during our most recent visit to Charleston, WV. It is one of these museums that truly exceed your expectations, and most importantly - it is FREE! In some ways, you felt like it was kind of a magical Disney experience as you went through a vast majority of these exhibitions. I was amazed by the attention to detail and ways the exhibitions capture guests attention. About two hours, you can go through all the different exhibitions and have a great time learning about West Virginia's history. There are so many things that kind of enlightened my knowledge about this State, and would definitely recommend it to anyone. Also, if you go during the weekends, the parking meters are free and don't have to worry so much about parking. If you are wanting to learn about WV and staying in Charleston, you must come to this place.
Written July 4, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Kim A
Port Byron, IL135 contributions
Aug 2021
This was one of most pleasant surprises of our overnight in Charleston. Of course, we are museum people.

The exhibits here give the history of West Virginia and how it became a state separated from Virginia and why. Lots of interesting knowledge to be shared with adults and school age children.

The museum is free and across the quad from the capital building which you must schedule a time for tours.
Written August 20, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

lovetotravelIl
United States183 contributions
Mar 2021
We went in without expecting much and ended up spending close to 2 hours in this museum. It was very interesting and educational for both our kids and us. It’s set up like a timeline that you travel through, so you really feel the essence of a particular time period. There are speakers that tell the story as well as movies/skits that play in some of the rooms. Not sure how it feels with the crowds, but we were the only ones there and it was nice to follow along to the narratives. It’s absolutely free to both residents and visitors. Overall, great museum to explore and learn about West Virginia history.
Written April 2, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Anne H
1 contribution
Nov 2022 • Family
Me and my sister and her husband from California went, It had been 32 years the last time I seen my sister in person,, And what better place to go to catch up, The Museum, It was the first time I been there, And it was cool. One moment you feel like your standing on a porch from 1900's, To the underground mine, it was really interesting, so interesting that I will be going back,The Gift Shop is nice, The staff is super friendly, Parking was I think $1.00 an hour, we didn't have to drive around the parking lot 100 times to find a spot. and they have all kinds of handicap parking right up front, Its worth the visit, really interesting.
My sister and her husband really enjoyed it as did I.
👍👍👍
Written December 3, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

907blaked
Tampa, FL1,335 contributions
Jun 2021 • Family
We went here on a Tuesday morning in June. The whole museum exceeded our expectations, including the fact that it was free. All of the exhibits were filled with really good content and our entire family enjoy the museum. The lady at the reception desk was super nice and helpful. We spent about two hours there and could have spent even longer.The basement had a lovely West Virginia history exhibit from prehistoric times to the present, Including exhibits of an old general store, a movie theater, a coal mine, the early State House, and a 1950s diner. The main floor had amazing contemporary art quilts and a Blenko glass exhibits.
Written June 30, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

rhaltn56
Murfreesboro, TN176 contributions
Aug 2020
This is a great State Museum, people were welcoming, lots to see it is pretty big area that covers so much of West Virginia History. Best of all it is free of charge, Parking is close by and the area that it is in has a lot more to see so plan awhile for everything to be seen. The Gift shop has some reasonable prices and staff was very pleasant and nice. If you are a history bluff you have to stop and see this. Children would like it as their are interactive exhibits and the displays have something to see for all age groups. It is very well laid out and is easy to explore, recommend this highly.
Written August 4, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Dale S
Charleston, WV27 contributions
Feb 2021 • Solo
Allow approximately 1-2 hours, depending on how much/quickly you read. Admission is free. Parking is 0.25 per 30 minutes if you use meters on complex grounds. Take time to check out the monuments spread around on your way to museum.
Written February 25, 2021
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

HavingHope
Powell, TN173 contributions
Jan 2020
The kids ages 9 and 11 really enjoyed the museum. When we first arrived we grabbed the museum's scavenger hunt and after that we did the geocache hunt. I think the geocache hunt is what got my 9 year old really into the exhibits. The exhibits are beautifully done, but he likes to find treasure at the end. He said he felt like a detective. I think there was only one other person in the museum while we were there. There was a lot of staff present. The place is sparkling clean. We spent almost all day here.
Written January 13, 2020
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

Geminican
San Jose, CA2,065 contributions
Sep 2022
Glad to have visited.

This place was not on the visit bucket list until staff at the West Virigina State Capitol Information Center told me about it. It's right next to the State Capitol building.
Due to time constraint, I only spent 45 minutes but wish to have more time.
Please plan spending 2-3 hours for a more relaxed and thorough visit.
The main exhibits are in the basement level, and it's huge.
The shows West Virginia history from pre-historic time to date, highlighting what makes West Virginia unique, its main industries and people. The pain path is easy to walk on, well labeled, and each exhibit are well designed and interesting to read and see. A general store, pharmacy, mining rail track, old style voting booth, artifacts from the past, and many more.
If you are in Charleston, WV, visit both the State Capitol building and West Virginia State Museum.

This was a pleasant surprise and exceeded the expectation.
Written October 30, 2022
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews.

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