50 Best Art Museums Near Me: Northeast US Edition

Are you looking for an Art Getaway in the Northeast US? Have you recently searched for the “Best Art Museums Near Me?” while in New England, New York, NJ, and Pennsylvania?

Of course, your search coughed up the biggies, like the Metropolitan Museum and Museum of Modern Art in NYC, because most art aficionados know about them.

But what about those worthy but obscure museums that you’ve most likely never heard of? You’ll find them here! From the whimsical Grounds for Sculpture in New Jersey to the fragile creations at Corning Glass Museum in the Finger Lakes NY, the Northeast is replete with art museums filled with remarkable collections.

So, here are the 49 of the best, and, for the most part, least known, art museums Northeast US, linked to weekend getaways associated with them.

Table of Contents

Best Art Museums Near Me -When in New England, New York, Pennsylvania, and New Jersey

Bennington Museum


Bennington Museum

Marsh-Billings-Rockerfeller National Historic Site

  • Woodstock VT – Laurence Rockefeller collected Thomas Cole and other Hudson River School artists. See these and more on a special tour of his Vermont home, a part of the National Park service since 1992.

Middlebury College Museum of Art

Middlebury VT: Art on college campuses tend to take risks. The Middlebury College Art                    Museum is no exception.

Monhegan Island Sunrise Mid Coast Maine


Ogunquit Museum Of American Art

  • Ogunquit ME: Origins of Maine Art Colonies, and early 20th Century art.

Monhegan Island Art Colony

  • Monhegan Island ME: Some well known mid-century artists couldn’t get far enough away from mainland Maine – so they found a still-active artist haven here.

Colby College Art Museum

  • Waterville ME: Largest Art Museum in Maine at Colby College, with 700 pieces by Alex Katz.

Farnsworth Museum

Center For Maine Contemporary Art

Andrew Wyeth’s Summer Studio

  • Rockland ME: Home to two art museums – the venerable Farnsworth and the brand new Center For Maine Contemporary Art – 24 art galleries, Andrew Wyeth‘s summer studio (where he painted Christina’s World).
Weir Farm Nationa Historic Park Ridgefield CT
Weir Farm National Historic Park Ridgefield CT

Connecticut Art Museums and Weekend Getaways

Wadsworth Atheneum

  • Hartford CT: One of the oldest Art Museums in the country, the Wadsworth Atheneum spans 5,000 years.

Florence Griswold Home and Museum

  • Old Lyme CT: Birthplace of American Impressionism. See original art on cupboards at Florence Griswold Home and Museum.

Weir Farm

  • Ridgefield CT: Weir Farm – home and studios of J. Alden Weir, one of America’s first Impressionist Artists in the late 1800’s. This is one of only two National Parks devoted to a single artist. (The other is Saint Gaudens National Historic Site in Cornish NH – see below).

Lyman Allyn Art Museum

  • New London CT: Lyman Allyn Art Museum. On 32 hilltop acres overlooking Connecticut’s Thames River.

Bruce Museum

  • Greenwich CT: Bruce Museum reopened in 2023 after a $67 million dollar expansion, highlighting science and art “from penguins to Picasso.”

Rembrandt painting at Worcester Art Museum in Worcester MA

Massachusetts Art Museums and Weekend Getaways

Rocky Neck Artist Colony

  • Gloucester MA: Rocky Neck, one of the earliest and still authentic art colonies on the Northeast Coast.

Whistler House Museum

  • Lowell MA: James Whistler’s (Whistler’s Mother) boyhood home is an excellent art museum that, unfortunately, gets lost in midst of the Industrial Revolution National Historic Park.

Worcester Art Museum

  • Worcester MA: Worcester Art Museum, with rare Roman Antioch Mosaics and other world-class art.

Museum of Fine Arts, Boston

Norman Rockwell Museum

  • Stockbridge MA: Norman Rockwell and Daniel Chester French (sculpted the Lincoln Memorial).

The Clark

Mass MoCa

Peabody-Essex Museum

  • Salem MA: The Peabody-Essex Museum gets lost in all the witch hoopla. But this incredible institution is worth a getaway on its own merits.

Highfield Hall

  • Falmouth MA: Highfield Hall – a rescued historic home. Cutting edge installations.

Cape Cod Museum of Art

         Dennis MA: Cape Cod Museum of Art keeps the work of Cape artists on the Cape.

St Gaudens National Historic Site NH

New Hampshire Art Museums and Weekend Getaways

Hood Museum of Art

  • Hanover NH: Hood Museum of Art and Orozco Murals at Dartmouth College

Saint Gaudens National Historic Site

  • Cornish NH: Saint Gaudens National Historic Site. One of only two National Historic Parks devoted to a particular artist (the other is Weir Farm in Ridgefield CT – see above).

Currier Museum of Art

  • Manchester NH: Currier Museum of Art. This world-class museum has a connection to an iconic Frank Lloyd Wright home.

Mana Contemporary elevator

New Jersey Art Museums and Other Attractions For Art Lovers

MANA Contemporary

  • Jersey City NJ: The one-million square foot gallery/studio/storage/shipping facility for hundreds of established and emerging artists – MANA Contemporary.

Grounds for Sculpture

Princeton University Art Gallery

  • Trenton and Princeton NJ: Grounds for Sculpture – incredible outdoor sculpture garden, and the Princeton University Art Gallery.

Burchfield Penny Art Center in Buffalo NY

New York Art Museums Outside NYC

AKG Art Museum

Burchfield-Penney Art Center

  • Buffalo NY: unsung AKG Art Museum, Burchfield-Penney Art Center and several Frank Lloyd Wright homes.

Munson Williams Proctor Arts Institute

  • Utica NY: Munson Williams Proctor Arts Institute, designed by Philip Johnson.

Memorial Art Gallery

  • Rochester NY: Home to Kodak founder, George Eastman, Rochester’s Memorial Art Gallery is a hidden gem.

Storm King Art Center

  • West Point NY: Storm King Art Center – another world-class large outdoor sculpture museum.

DIA: Beacon

  • Beacon NY: DIA:Beacon – contemporary art, large installations, in a former paper factory.

Edward Hopper House Museum and Study Center

  • Nyack NY: Childhood home of Edward Hopper.

Noguchi Museum

MoMa PS1

Thomas Cole National Historic Site

  • Catskill NY: Thomas Cole NHS – home of “The Father of the Hudson River School of Art.”

Olana State Historic Site – Home of Frederic Church

  • Hudson NY: Olana State Historic Site – home of landscape artist, Frederic Church, a leading member of the Hudson River School of Art.

Corning Museum of Glass

Rockwell Museum

  • Corning NY: Home to Corning Glass Co. and the venerable Corning Museum of Glass, and the “hidden-gem” Rockwell Museum (a Smithsonian affiliate).

The Jewelry Box Mural in Philadelphia PA

Pennsylvania Art Museums and Weekend Getaways

The Maridon Museum

  • Butler PA: One of the best Asian Art museums in the state, The Maridon, is nestled on a residential street in this small western PA town. A true hidden gem.

GoggleWorks Center For the Arts

Reading PA: Though not exactly an art museum, GoggleWorks serves as a museum of           artists, meaning that visitors can meet and greet dozens of artists working in all mediums (including   virtual reality) in their own studios. There’s a fantastic gift shop that could serve as an art museum   itself, and workshops and classes, to inspire the artist within you.

Philadelphia Murals

  • Philadelphia PA: With museums galore, don’t ignore the several thousand Murals that adorn many building walls.

Brandywine River Museum of Art

  • Brandywine Valley PA: It’s Wyeth Country. Three generations of Wyeth’s are represented in the Brandywine River Museum of Art.

Andy Warhol Museum

Mattress Factory


  • Pittsburgh PAAs Andy Warhol’s boyhood city, and home to some crazy avant-guarde art, Pittsburgh is surprisingly with it when it comes to creatives.

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  • Malerie Yolen-Cohen

    Malerie Yolen-Cohen is the Author of the cross-country travel guide, Stay On Route 6; Your Guide to All 3562 Miles of Transcontinental Route 6. She contributes frequently to Newsday, with credits in National Geographic Traveler, Ladies Home Journal, Yankee Magazine, Shape.com, Sierra Magazine, Porthole, Paddler, New England Boating, Huffington Post, and dozens of other publications. Malerie’s focus and specialty is Northeastern US, and she is constantly amazed by the caliber of restaurants and lodging in the unlikeliest places.