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Museum Hack: The Best Metropolitan Museum of Art Tour in NYC

Museum Hack: The Best Metropolitan Museum of Art Tour in NYC

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Want to have the best Metropolitan Museum of Art tour experience? Head over to Museum Hack! This blog will tell you all about our trip and why I think it is the best one there.

This Museum Hack: The Best Metropolitan Museum of Art Tour in NYC post was written by family travel expert Marcie Cheung and contains affiliate links, which means if you purchase something from one of my affiliate links, I may earn a small commission that goes back into maintaining this blog.

Are you planning a visit to New York City and looking for a unique way to explore the city’s cultural gems? Look no further than a Metropolitan Museum of Art tour.

This isn’t just any tour; it’s an unconventional, high-energy experience offered by Museum Hack. Known for their quirky and engaging approach, Museum Hack tours provide an alternative way to explore one of the world’s most famous museums, located on Met Fifth Avenue.

Whether you’re an art lover or someone who usually finds museums boring, this Met tour promises to captivate with fascinating stories and surprising facts. From ancient Egypt to modern masterpieces, this tour covers it all.

If you have time, you can even go to Met’s other branch at the Met Cloisters. Join a private tour and meet your guide at the designated meeting point for a memorable experience that you’ll want to share with friends and family.

Here’s how our experience went, with some tips that can help you on your future Met Tour.

Museum Hack Tours

Are you asking yourself, “What is Museum Hack?” Well, it’s a museum tour company that doesn’t do traditional (aka boring) museum tours. Their tagline is: We Lead Unconventional Tours of the World’s Best Museums.

These tours actually started at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City, located on Met Fifth Avenue, and their “un-highlights tour” puts an alternative spin on the museum. Be prepared to hear some of the strangest and most hilarious stories hidden throughout the museum!

Museum Hack currently offers tours in the following cities: New York City, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Washington, DC, Chicago, and Philadelphia. Since we were heading to New York City for the first time, we opted to do the tour that started it all: The Metropolitan Museum of Art: Un-Highlights Tour.

The Metropolitan Museum of Art: Un-Highlights Tour

New York City is home to some of the world’s most famous museums, including York’s Metropolitan Museum. Since my husband and I only had 4 days in New York City, I knew we couldn’t hit them all.

That’s why this 2-hour tour of the Metropolitan Museum of Art first appealed to us.

Two hours seemed like a respectable time to look around The Met without spending the entire day there.

Photo of the best NYC tour of The Metropolitan Museum of Art from Museum Hack #museumhack #themet #nyc #metropolitanmuseumofart #nyctour #newyorkcity

Our tour guide, Kevin, was the perfect person to share the secrets of some of The Met’s top attractions. Photo credit: Marcie Cheung

Then, I read the tour description on the Museum Hack website. It basically said the tour was made for both people who love museums AND those who can’t stand museums.

It promised a high-energy tour that zips around The Met while pointing out the crazy true stories behind some of the pieces in the museum’s massive art collection. Since we were looking for fun activities in New York City, this guided tour seemed perfect for us!

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I really, really don’t want to give away the secrets. And if you are thinking about signing up for this tour, I URGE you not to research it too much. We went into it without knowing much about the itinerary, and I’m so glad it was all a surprise! I mean, that’s such a big part of this Museum Hack tour!

Photo of art at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City, a stop on a Museum Hack Metropolitan Museum tour #museumhack #museumtour #themet #tourofthemet #arttour #nyc #newyorkcity

You’ll NEVER guess what this was used for! Photo credit: Marcie Cheung

But, I will say that we saw a variety of paintings, sculptures, armor, and structures. Most of the time was spent in one half of The Metropolitan, and we saw some of all the highlights.

However, we also got to explore the collection storage area, which was much more fascinating than it sounds.


I always look for quirky things to do when we travel. Reading the descriptions of the various Museum Hack tours made me giddy. I admit, I’ve been geeking out over this for months.

I even lamented to my husband that we should have done The Getty Center: Un-Highlights Tour when we were in Los Angeles earlier this year.

Photo of the Museum Hack tour recreation of "Washington Crossing the Delaware" at The Metropolitan Museum of Art tour in New York City #themet #washingtoncrossingthedelaware #museumhack #nyc #newyorkcity #nyctour

We took a moment to recreate “Washington Crossing the Delaware” after learning all the historical inaccuracies of the painting! Photo credit: Kevin Hurley | Museum Hack

  1. Our guide was a professional comedian. And I don’t mean that he told corny jokes. He was an actual comedian who knew how to present the information in a hilarious way that felt natural.
  2. We did a crazy photo opp. Right there in the middle of The Met with people watching. Like we owned the place!
  3. We got to play games. And not boring, lame games. Games that you could play at any museum to liven things up.
  4. We burned off breakfast, racing through the museum. When people say that New Yorkers walk briskly, they aren’t joking. But zipping through the museum not only let us cover a lot of ground but also energized us!
  5. It re-kindled our love of museum tours. Normally, when we finish a museum tour, our brains are spent, and we’re ready to sit down somewhere and eat. We’re usually bored at the end and dread visiting any more museums. But, this Museum Hack tour totally changed our minds!

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My husband and I LOVED LOVED LOVED this Metropolitan Museum of Art tour! We enjoyed it so much that we immediately got on our phone to book the Museum of Natural History Un-Highlights Tour.

This was the first time we’d done a museum tour packed with information that felt digestible.

Photo of the Un-Highlights Tour of The Met in NYC, a New York City Metropolitan Museum of Art tour #museumhack #metropolitanmuseumofart #nyctour #tourofnyc #nycattraction #museumtour

Our tour guide, Kevin, had so much personality and really made The Met come to life! Photo credit: Marcie Cheung

In fact, after this tour, we were inspired to spend another hour looking at some of the other exhibits. Our guide purposefully ended the tour in an area we hadn’t explored yet, so we would be encouraged to stay longer.

It was great that we understood the layout and were able to navigate this massive museum easily.

The real, lasting impression of this Un-Highlights Tour of the Met is that it truly appeals to everyone on some level.

If you are passionate about art, you’ll love learning the crazy stories behind it. Even if you aren’t a fan of art, you might enjoy hearing about scandals and museum secrets.

Photo of The Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City, where we did a Museum Hack tour of NYC art #themet #museumhack #unhighlightstour #metropolitanmuseumofart #nyctour #newyorkcity

As we left, I added my admissions sticker to the big wall of stickers. Photo credit: Marcie Cheung

We felt like total VIPs getting the behind-the-scenes stories. It was like we were part of the “in crowd,” and our guide was an old friend. We walked around like we were supposed to be there and that we were on an important mission to see specific spots as quickly as possible.

By the end, we were so excited about The Met that we started talking about when we could come back.

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Is this Metropolitan Museum of Art Tour Right for YOU?

  • Do you dread audio tours?
  • Do you think art museums are boring?
  • Are you overwhelmed by the size of The Met?
  • Are you traveling with someone who spends way too long at museums?
  • Have you been to The Met before and want a completely different experience?
  • Would you like to learn stories that you can amaze your friends with later?

If you answered yes to any of those questions, then you should sign up immediately!

Tips for this Museum Hack Tour

Photo of The Met Gala special exhibition at the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City #nyc #themetgala #themet #nycmuseum #newyorkcity #nycattractions

We were there a few days after The Met Gala, so we got to see this special exhibit. Photo credit: Marcie Cheung


If you are a coffee drinker, fuel up before the tour. It’s fast-paced and full of awesomeness, and you’ll want to keep up! The worst thing would be to be sleepy and miss out on the fascinating details.


The Met has a security line to go through. We didn’t count on that, so we were worried we’d be late for the tour. Because it is a popular museum, the line can be really long.


Actually, I’d say this advice works for anywhere you go in New York City. But, you will be walking quickly through The Met. I’d personally avoid high heels or slippery shoes. The floor is a bit slick.


We happened to be there a few days after the 2018 Met Gala. Apparently, that’s the busiest week for people visiting the Metropolitan Museum of Art because they keep the displays up for a bit. Don’t let the crowds discourage you.

I personally get stressed out in crowds, but I didn’t feel overwhelmed. Instead, I felt really privileged to be able to walk around exhibits that were a part of pop history!


During warm weather months, The Cantor Roof Garden Bar serves drinks and snacks on The Met roof. From up here, you’ll have unbeatable views of Central Park and the Manhattan skyline. Plus, it’s a great place to take a moment and plan the rest of your day.

When we were visiting in May, the Roof had just opened to the public. However, it started raining right as we were waiting for the elevator to head up to The Met rooftop bar, so they closed it. We tried going back after it stopped raining, but it was closed for the day.

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My husband likes to half-joke that he hasn’t met a gift shop he didn’t like. The Metropolitan Museum of Art Store may be my favorite museum gift shop ever.

In fact, I shopped for a birthday present for a 3-year-old there. She’s a little fashionista, so I found this Coco Chanel board book.

They even had those trendy lapel pins that I’m now regretting I didn’t buy. They were only $11, which makes them a nice NYC souvenir. Plus, they don’t take up much space in a suitcase.

Fun Books You Might Like

Atlas Obscura: An Explorer’s Guide to the World’s Hidden Wonders
What If?: Serious Scientific Answers to Absurd Hypothetical Questions
The Mental Floss History of the United States: The (Almost) Complete and (Entirely) Entertaining Story of America
The World of Lore: Monstrous Creatures
Rejected Princesses: Tales of History’s Boldest Heroines, Hellions, and Heretics

Metropolitan Museum of Arts with Kids

So, while this particular Museum Hack tour is geared toward people ages 16 and up, they do offer a family tour called Little Hackers. This may be the hippest name for a family tour I’ve ever heard.

Anyway, it sounds like a similar tour but geared for kids ages 13 and under. We’re planning on doing this tour with our boys when we go on a family trip to New York City in the next couple of years.

Metropolitan Museum of the Art Tour Wrap-Up

After an exhilarating Metropolitan Museum of Art tour, my husband and I were left in awe of the incredible history and works of art we had seen. This tour not only rekindled our love for museums but also provided us with stories and experiences that we’ll cherish forever.

If you are looking for a same day adventure that’s both educational and entertaining, this tour is a must. Accessible for wheelchair users and with a convenient meeting point, it’s a perfect outing for everyone.

Don’t miss the chance to explore the Metropolitan Museum in a whole new light.

Museum Hack provided press tickets for review purposes. All opinions are my own.

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The Met: Un-Highlights Tour of the Metropolitan Museum of Art is the coolest museum tour I've ever done! #museumhack #unhighlightstour #themet #metropolitanmuseumofart #nyc #newyorkcity #nyctour #newyorkcitytourNew York City's coolest tour is the Museum Hack Un-Highlights Tour of The Met in New York City #themetropolitan #themetropolitanmuseumofart #themet #nyc #newyorkcity #museumtour #museumhackLooking for fun things to do in New York City? This Un-Highlights Tour of The Metropolitan Museum of Art is one of the best things to do in NYC #nyc #newyorkcity #museumtour #themet #museumhack #tourofnyc[mailerlite_form form_id=3]

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Saturday 30th of June 2018

This sounds amazing! I'm headed to NYC at the end of the year and am definitely squirrelling this away for the to-do list.


Saturday 30th of June 2018

YES! You have to do this! They also have a tour with wine, I'm just sayin' :)

Jenni LeBaron

Wednesday 6th of June 2018

I LOVE the MET. It's by far my favorite museum I've ever been to. Each time I go I see something new that I didn't know they had. I would love to take this tour on my next trip so that I can have a guide point out even more magic.


Wednesday 6th of June 2018

Yes! And they have a few other tours there you might really enjoy!


Wednesday 6th of June 2018

This sounds like so much fun!! I lived in NYC for years and never went to the Met, can you believe that? Maybe on one of our trips I will go with my husband, this tour sound like so much fun!


Wednesday 6th of June 2018

What a tragedy! You know, most of us probably don't experience everything our city has to offer. Hope you get to see it soon!


Tuesday 5th of June 2018

This sounds so awesome !! Though i genuinely just love walking around museums, this would be great for my husband who gets a little bored.


Tuesday 5th of June 2018

He would probably love it! It's upbeat and there's tons of fascinating backstories I wouldn't have known otherwise.


Tuesday 5th of June 2018

Sounds like you had an amazing time. We'll absolute check Museum Hack next time we're in NY!


Tuesday 5th of June 2018

It's a very hip tour company!

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