Not up for seeing the “Mona Lisa”? VirtualTourist.com ( www.virtualtourist.com) compiled a list of “Top Non-Art Museums.” On their roster:
National Air & Space Museum, Washington, D.C. The museum, part of the Smithsonian, is the world’s largest collection of historic aircraft and spacecraft and one of the most visited museums in the world. It houses landmark pieces from scientific history, including the original Wright brothers’ 1903 Flyer, Charles Lindbergh’s Spirit of St. Louis, and the command module from Apollo 11. Details: www.airandspace.si.edu.
Lower East Side Tenement Museum, New York City. It is housed in an original tenement building that was discovered intact in the late 1980s, and a guided tour through the dark, cramped quarters shows what living conditions could be like in New York City before housing laws were established. Details: www.tenement.org.
The VasaMuseet, Stockholm, Sweden. In 1628, the Vasa commenced her maiden voyage, but heeled over and sank in the middle of Stockholm harbor, sailing less than 1 nautical mile. After 333 years underwater, the ship was finally recovered in 1961. Now, the Vasa is safely ashore and on display at the VasaMuseet. Details: www.vasamuseet.se.
Museo Nacional de Antropologia, Mexico City. This is a place to admire ancient Olmec, Mayan and Aztec relics – all within Mexico City. It’s considered one of the world’s finest archaeological museums, with an incredible display of pre-Columbian artifacts, including the Piedra del Sol – “Stone of the Sun” – the Aztec calendar stone found in Mexico City’s main square. Details: www.mna.inah.gob.mx.
The Globe Museum of the Austrian National Library, Vienna, Austria. Here’s the world’s only institution in which terrestrial and celestial globes are acquired, researched and presented to the public. The museum holds more than 650 objects including globes of Earth’s moon and of various planets, as well as instruments linked with globes (armillary spheres) and instruments in which globes serve an important role. Details: http://bit.ly/dLjSgE.