Museum Spotlight- The Met Cloisters

While the Metropolitan Museum of Art is one of my favorite museums in New York, I’d only managed to visit The Cloisters this past winter.

Located in Fort Tryon Park in Upper Manhattan, this offshoot of the Metropolitan Museum of Art is easy enough to get to from the city via public transportation, but I chose to drive in for my visit. Since it was winter, there weren’t a lot of other visitors and I was able to snag one of the parking spaces lining the road up to the museum. There are other small parking lots located behind the building, but I can imagine that parking would be competitive in warmer months.

The building is inspired by medieval architecture and includes medieval gardens, chapels and galleries with medieval art- the main focus of the museum.

Likely the most famous pieces in the museum are the unicorn tapestries. I’d actually seen recreations of the tapestries being woven in Scotland, but this is the first time I’ve seen the originals so up close. The details that they managed to create in these pieces were incredible- and at such a large scale as well!

The cloisters themselves are also a huge draw the museum. There are four of the arched courtyards scattered through the museum, one of which hosts a functioning cafe in the spring and summer.

I was lucky enough to be visiting during one of the only snowfalls of this winter and it really made the view of the cloisters more beautiful.

Overall I enjoyed my trip to the cloisters- they had some very specific medieval pieces that I’d never seen before.

As a New Yorker, I was lucky enough to be able to pay what I will, but tickets normally run $30 a pop for adults. With that price tag, I’d recommend this museum for those who have a specific interest in medieval art, but the grounds themselves are beautiful and Fort Tryon Park itself is worth a visit if nothing else.

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