What to see at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York: timetables, prices and advice

The MET, Metropolitan Museum of Art, is one of the largest tourist attractions in New York and one of the most important museums in the world together with the British Museum in London. With its over 5 million visitors a year, the MET hosts artistic collections from every era starting from Ancient Egypt to the greatest impressionists and modern artists, as well as offering special temporary exhibitions for all types of art lovers at three hundred and sixty degrees.


  1. What to see and how to visit the Metropolitan Museum of Art (met)
  2. First floor
  3. Second and third floor
  4. Basement
  5. Temple of Dendur
  6. Harvest
  7. Wheat field with cypresses
  8. Manuel Osorio Manrique de Zuniga
  9. Rhythm of autumn (number 30)
  10. Ugolino and his sons
  11. Dutch interior (III)
  12. By boat to Argenteuil
  13. Altar dedicated to Maitreya Buddha
  14. Hippopotamus figure
  15. Hours and prices
  16. Online tickets and guided tours
  17. User questions and comments

What to see and how to visit the Metropolitan Museum of Art (met)

Located at number 1.000 on Fifth Avenue, it occupies a large part of Central Park and hosts about 2 million works divided into nineteen sections. Furthermore, the Met has two detached wings: the first is The Cloisters located in Fort Tyron Park and houses unique collections of medieval art in the world; the second, inaugurated in 2016, is The Met Breuer, located in the building owned by the Whitney Museum on Madison Avenue, which will host contemporary art exhibitions for the next eight years. The sections within the Metropolitan Museum are divided by theme:

First floor

  • Greek and Roman art: galleries from 150 to 176
  • Asian art: galleries from 350 to 358
  • European art: galleries from 500 to 556
  • Modern and contemporary art: galleries 813, 828, 829 and 830 - from 900 to 925
  • Robert Lehman collection: galleries from 950 to 962
  • American art: galleries from 700 to 774
  • Weapons and loves: galleries from 370 to 380
  • Egyptian art: galleries from 100 to 138
  • Medieval and Byzantine art: galleries from 300 to 307

Second and third floor

  • Near and Middle Eastern art: galleries from 400 to 406
  • Islamic art: galleries from 450 to 464
  • European painting: galleries from 600 to 664 - from 800 to 827
  • Drawings and sketches: galleries from 690 to 693
  • Ancient Asian art: galleries from 200 to 253
  • Musical instruments: galleries from 680 to 684
  • Photography: galleries from 850 to 852


  • Costume Institute

Here are the 10 things not to be missed.

1 - Temple of Dendur

Received as a gift from Egypt to the United States as a symbol of recognition for having safeguarded the integrity of Nubian monuments. Imposing and majestic just like his brothers in Egypt, it is a perfectly preserved temple in all its parts, from the portico (pronaos) to the sanctuary, with columns surmounted by capitals decorated with plant elements.

  • creation date: 15 y. C.
  • Author: unknown
  • Dimensions: length 25 meters
  • Technique and subject: sacred temple in Aeolian sandstone

2 - Harvest

Masterpiece ofnaturalistic art Flemish, affirmation of a new humanism where landscapes are represented without the need to resort to a religious pretext, but for the sacredness of the simple life of the fields itself.

  • creation date: 1565
  • Author: Pieter Bruegel the Elder
  • Dimensions: 119x162 cm
  • Technique and subject: Oil on wood depicting the summer harvest of the fields

3 - Wheat field with cypresses

One of the masterpieces of the Dutch master, one of the three versions of this work is kept at the Met, the other two are kept in the National Gallery in London and in a private collection. The painting represents the typical aspects of the Provencal countryside to which the author was particularly attached and which he himself compared to "a Scottish plaid of many colors".

  • creation date: 1889
  • Author: Vincent Van Gogh
  • Dimensions: 72x91 cm
  • Technique and subject: Oil on canvas depicting fields of wheat and cypresses

4 - Manuel Osorio Manrique de Zuniga

Portrait of the son of the Count of Altamira, this work depicts the innocence of childhood contained in the image of this child dressed in a precious red dress intent on playing with a domesticated magpie. It is considered one of the greatest masterpieces of the great Spanish painter.

  • creation date: 1792
  • Author: Francisco Goya
  • Dimensions: 127x101,6 cm
  • Technique and subject: Oil on canvas, portrait

5 - Autumn rhythm (number 30)

Icon of abstract expressionism, this work is one of the largest among those created by the author with his particular technique of "dripping", consisting of calligraphic lines of color left to drip directly onto the canvas. Emblematic and with a strong impact.

  • creation date: 1945
  • Author: Jackson Pollock
  • Dimensions: 22,67x5,26 m
  • Technique and subject: enamel on canvas

6 - Ugolino and his sons

The scene portrayed in this suggestive statuary group is taken from the thirty-third canto of the Divine Comedy, where the story of Count Ugolino della Gherardesca is told who was imprisoned with his children and grandchildren for treason, and was left to starve in his cell. The main features of the sculpture are the shocking anatomical realism and the direct tribute to the master Michelangelo Buonarroti.

  • creation date: 1865
  • Author: Jean Baptiste Carpeaux
  • Dimensions: 197,5 cm
  • Technique and subject: Marble sculpture in the round

7 - Dutch interior (III)

Cornerstone of the current of surrealism, this work with strong chromatic contrasts embodies the representation of a dreamlike and subconscious reality. The painting is part of a series of three creations inspired by old hand-painted Dutch postcards from the 1700s that originally depicted rural hunting scenes. The author applies a profound symbolic break, making the scene the scene of an inner journey, precisely "surreal".

  • creation date: 1928
  • Author: Joan Mirò
  • Dimensions: 129,9x96,8 cm
  • Technique and subject: Oil painting on canvas

8 - By boat to Argenteuil

The painting depicts a couple taking a boat ride on the Seine in one of the most iconic manifestations of Manét's French Impressionism, which goes beyond the limits of the soft color palettes and soft lines of his colleagues, but imports from the Japanese tradition the use of warm and more decisive colors and marked diagonals.

  • creation date: 1874
  • Author: Edouard Manet
  • Dimensions: 97x130 cm
  • Technique and subject: Oil on canvas depicting the navigation on the Argenteuil

9 - Altar dedicated to Maitreya Buddha

One of the pieces of the oriental tradition most important among those preserved in the West, this altarpiece is a rare example without support and its style is unique in that it is characterized by thin bodies and heavy draperies. It developed at the court of the Wei dynasty and represents the bodhisactive Buddha, who will later become the master Buddha in the next cosmic era according to Eastern worship.

  • creation date: 524 AD
  • Author: unknown
  • Dimensions: 76,8 cm
  • Technique and subject: altarpiece in gilded bronze

10 - Hippopotamus figure

This small statuette depicting a hippopotamus nicknamed "William" is considered the mascot of the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Dating back to Ancient Egypt, it strikes for its bright colors inlaid with golden decorations and for its perfect conservation. This animal was revered in Egyptian culture and often its depiction was left in the tombs as it was believed to have magical powers.

  • creation date: 1981 y. C.
  • Author: unknown
  • Dimensions: 11x20
  • Technique and subject: statuette depicting a small hippopotamus in Faience

Hours and prices

  • open from 10:00 to 17:30 from Sunday to Thursday and from 10:00 to 21:00 on Friday and Saturday. The only days off are Christmas, New Year and Thanksgiving.
  • Best time to avoid queues: given the abundant turnout throughout the year, it is preferable to go to the entrance at least one hour before the morning opening, therefore around 9:00 am already equipped with a ticket previously purchased online.
  • full $ 25,00 (approximately € 22,00)
  • Reductions: $ 17,00 (around € 15,00) for over 65s and $ 12,00 (around € 10,00) for students
  • Free: children under 12 years

Online tickets and guided tours

Useful tips for visiting the attraction

  1. Get up early: the ideal would be to reach the entrance by 9:00 am;
  2. Buy the city card: if you are interested in visiting other museums or attractions in the city, you can buy the city card and save on admissions. In fact, with the New York Pass (Buy online) not only the entrance to the Met is included, but also to the two separate areas, the Met Breuer and the Met Cloister, if you enter on the same day. The pass also works as a skip the line.
  3. Priority ticket: buy the ticket with priority entrance to avoid the endless queues.
  4. Watch out for restrictions: water or food is not allowed inside the museum, make sure you don't have any with you
  5. Minimum time: we advise you to consider a minimum of 7/8 hours for the visit. Given the scope of the Metropolitan Museum, a single day is actually not enough to visit all the areas most of the time, but if you are in New York for a few days and want to see at least the essentials, you can book the Express tour with guide lasting 2 hours.

Where is it and how to get there

  • On foot: if you are already in Manhattan, just reach Central Park and use the main entrance located at number 1.000 of Fifth Avenue - Get directions
  • By bus: it is possible to reach the Met by the buses of the BMX3 and BMX4 lines, getting off at the 5av / w 78 St stop located 500 meters from the museum
  • By metro: take the Second Avenue Subway (line 2 of the New York subway) and get off at the 86th street stop.

Historical notes and curiosities: what to know in brief

The Met was inaugurated in 1872 so today it can boast almost 150 years of history. It was established by a circle of wealthy Americans with the intent of creating a reality that could compete with European museums. The architecture is neoclassical in style and from the early 1900s the expansion works gradually began with the creation of numerous new areas. It currently measures 180.000 square meters, hosts 2 million works and receives an average of 5,2 million visitors every year.

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