Family Time: Art in the Big Apple

Spending an art-filled day museum-hopping with my twin girls is even better than front-row seats at a Laurie Berkner concert—an equal thrill for the three of us with none of the jostling.

We start at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, blowing by the main hall lines and instead taking the street-level entrance marked “School Groups”—that’s open to all. 

Beyond the ticket counter is an airy children’s library with game-loaded computers. One flight up and we’re staring at mummies and armor, which never fail to wow, as does the city view from the roof deck.

After a stop for sandwiches and gelato at the nearby café Sant Ambroeus, we stroll to the Whitney Museum of American Art, where the girls use paper and pencils to draw Alexander Calder’s sculptures before spotting whimsical artwork such as “Split-Rocker” by Jeff Koons. Don’t miss: the tiny wire acrobats in Calder’s miniature circus.

From there, we grab red velvet doughnuts at Butterfield Market and take the subway to the Morgan Library & Museum, housed in a complex of buildings including J. P. Morgan’s early 20th-century mansion.

Past exhibitions have included the watercolor drawings from Antoine de Saint-Exupéry’s timeless tale, The Little Prince. The author wrote and illustrated the book in New York City—the perfect inspiration for young art lovers.

This piece, written by Rebecca Ascher-Walsh, first appeared in the June/July 2014 issue of  National Geographic Traveler magazine.



  1. The Educational Tourist
    Austin, Texas
    October 22, 2014, 5:44 pm

    What a wonderful piece. We are heading to NYC soon and are heading to the MET. We love a museum, too!

    I write travel guides for the kids and the MET will be next!

    Love the post,
    Natalie, The Educational Tourist

  2. Matthew Tarren
    August 22, 2014, 3:01 pm

    Have you ever visited the Cloisters? It’s an amazing museum along the Hudson and I took some great pictures there over Christmas.