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Philadelphia Museum of Art
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Philadelphia Museum of Art General Admission
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Ranked #1 of 445 things to do in Philadelphia
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Fee: Yes
Recommended length of visit: 1-2 hours
Owner description: As one of the largest museums in the United States, the Philadelphia Museum of Art invites visitors from around the world to explore its renowned collections, acclaimed special exhibitions, and enriching programs, both in person and online. Rising majestically at the end of the Benjamin Franklin Parkway, the Philadelphia Museum of Art stands as one of the great art institutions of the world. In the over 125 years since its founding, it has grown far beyond the limits originally set for it. Today, the Museum houses over 225,000 works of art encompassing some of the greatest achievements of human creativity, and offers a wealth of exhibitions and educational programs for a public of all ages.
Useful Information: Activities for young children, Activities for older children, Wheelchair access
New York
Level 5 Contributor
66 reviews
19 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 51 helpful votes
Reviewed May 23, 2014

Awesome if you like this kind of thing. I recommend you get a guided highlights tour! The Gross Clinic ad Van Gogh's Sunflowers are not to be missed.

Visited May 2014
Thank kdowell
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Knoxville, Tennessee
Level 5 Contributor
56 reviews
15 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 17 helpful votes
“You cannot beat the Met, but this and The Barnes runs a close second”
Reviewed May 23, 2014

Now, it has been many years since I have visited both.
The Barnes Foundation was within walking distance of my home in Merion, PA. It had (at that time) the largest private collection of Renoirs of whom I ws such a fan. Back in the 60's, Impressionism was quite popular with we hippie/revolutionaries. Plus, the unbelievable botanical gardens out back that many did not know about. I know the Barnes has moved and people are in an uproar. As well they should. For where will you plant the array of colored flowers and ponds that used to be in the suburbs but now in the city?
Interestingly, the most outstanding and astonishing thing I found there was not the Renoirs. It was the never before seen Van Goghs which must have been painted for Mr. Barnes. I recall one on a round pice of wood with a dark haired nude (rare for Van Gogh as most people were freaked out about him, let alone be nude in front of him). They didn't even look like the Van Goghs we all now COVET., To think he died a pauper having not sold ONE painting in his life is a travesty. And his bother Theo tried so hard.
Something like this challenges my belief in G-d, because why NOW do we pay millions of dollars for his magnificently unique works when none would sell back then? His brother Theo died a year after Van Gogh took his life. Such tragedy is appalling to me. But, the fact that Mr. Barnes had these uniquely unique Van Goghs gives me a bit of hope.
Like Cezanne, Miro, Basquiat, he was a one of a kind Most artists today couldn't even draw a face, let alone a starry night that draws you into it's magical swirl.
There are many who now do those Renoirish type of paintings and command good money. I shall not name names as some still live and that would be a terrible thing to do....girl in a field by a pond or lake, etc. But, find me another Starry night or portraits of the many faces of the artist. Or a pallet knifed Cezanne or a childlike Miro or a crazy yet comprehensible Basquiat.
Even Dalis which aren't S. Dali's are seen everywhere.
Now, for the Philly Museum of Art, you need good legs (you don't have to be a Rocky and you can park around the back, but you will miss the Rocky experience) to make it up to glorious paintings and sculptures inside.. It is a day worth doing, slowly taking in the many masters that reside within.
I do not know if I would recommend the Barnes now. I haven't seen it; therefore, I cannot judge it.
But the Big one in Philly is worth the day and then you can stroll down the outside (I forget the name) blvd with many nation's flags hanging proudly in the wind. Not in the winter, unfortunately, but come spring, summer and autumn, you can. And don;t forget the pretzel vendors along the way. There is NOTHING in this world that compares to a Philadelphia soft pretzel. NOTHING.
I honestly have not visited these wonderful places in Philly for about 7 years , but they gave me no choice but to fill in a date within the past year.

Visited June 2013
Thank bonbonrob
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
Level 6 Contributor
165 reviews
70 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 61 helpful votes
“A grand art museum - with Rocky greeting you at the steps”
Reviewed May 23, 2014

I have been to the art museum many times and I am always in awestruck. This is a very large art museum with so many great pieces of work - to many to name. If you have never been to this museum and in the area, make it a point to stop. They also have a very nice cafeteria.

Also note that this museum has a shuttle and part of the Rodin museum and the Pearlman Building.

Visited May 2014
Thank kmc4601
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Seattle, Washington
Level 5 Contributor
52 reviews
14 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 48 helpful votes
“Comparison: Philly MoA vs the Barnes”
Reviewed May 21, 2014

I went to both the Barnes and the Philly MoA.

I got into the MoA on a free day. I paid an appropriate price. I paid 45 bucks for the docent tour at the Barnes. I expect to go to Philly again to go back to the Barnes.

The strength of the Barnes is the top end of the work. The number of striking pieces at the Barnes is ridiculous. It is one of the finest exhibitions of art I've attended. For me, it's up there with things like the Van Gogh museum in Amsterdam. I was moved in multiple rooms and found dozens of pieces that I could spend serious time observing. The mode of exhibition, in walls of art, is also breathtaking at its heights.

The weakness is the relative narrowness of the collection. If you're looking for impressionists, you're in great shape. If you like Renoir, you're in the right place. If you don't dig that, you won't find much.

The strength of the MoA is the variety of the collection. You will find something that you like. There's a nice exhibition on the second floor that has a variety of mini buildings, including a Japanese tea house. It can either be awesome or feel a bit like Disneyfied art, depending on your perspective.

The weakness of the MoA is that there aren't that many showstoppers. They have some very nice pieces. A Van Gogh Sunflowers. A really nice Reubens. But the collection as a whole I found kinda meh. i walked through rooms and didn't find anything of real interest. The breadth of the collection leaves some weaknesses in the overall quality of what's in there.

I took the infant to both and she wasn't an issue. Both are stroller friendly and there's an awesome elevator at the MoA. Just check in the area with the main staircase. Such a big elevator!

The accessible access is around the building to the right if you're coming in from the side of the Rocky steps.

Visited May 2014
2 Thank cpgecko
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Edmonton, Canada
Level 6 Contributor
1,289 reviews
428 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 523 helpful votes
“Grand Art Museum”
Reviewed May 21, 2014

We were impressed with the art collection on display here. There is plenty to see so make a plan ahead of time. The outside front stairs make for some wow factor photos. Unlike the Barnes Foundation, you are allowed to take photos of the art without a flash. The gift stores provide a wide range of choices for souvenirs. Come early to avoid the crowds.

Visited May 2014
Thank kpatters
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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