8 Insta-Worthy Museums You Have to Visit

I recently visited Miami for the first time and even though I knew I would only be there for one day, I dedicated several hours to visiting the Museum of Ice Cream

Photo: Instagram/americanart

Photo: Instagram/americanart

I recently visited Miami for the first time and even though I knew I would only be there for one day, I dedicated several hours to visiting the Museum of Ice Cream. I had been seeing pictures of it on Instagram for months, and I absolutely had to go. It’s all about ice cream, it’s pink and there’s a sprinkle pool! I could not miss it. 

After doing a bit of research, I discovered that the Museum of Ice Cream is actually a whole lot less museum than it is an experience—an experience ripe with Instagram-worthy photo ops. But despite the steep price tag, it was totally worth it.

I actually waited to purchase our tickets until the very last minute because once I learned that there’s very little education about the “museum,” I wasn’t sure the $38-a-pop tickets would be worth it. But my man convinced me to bite the bullet—we both thought it would be a fun and unique experience that we might not have again, and we were right. Everyone in our party of four adults and two kids, loved the experience. It was novel, joyful and just plain fun—a bit like being in one wing of Willy Wonka’s Chocolate factory. And yes, my Instagram looked pretty sweet for the next several days!

We had such a good time, that I know I’ll be looking for similarly unique experiences for future travels. In fact, I’ve already started researching and there are cool pop-up-museums, museum exhibits and seemingly made-for-Instagram museums all over the U.S. Some are more traditional and offer plenty of educational enrichment along with all the priceless photo ops and others may seem absolutely frivolous, but I think that’s the point.

New York Hall of Science.

This museum—which has been around since the 1964-65 World’s Fair—is a legit science museum offering tons of educational exhibits and events. There is literally something for people of any age to do or learn, but one exhibit in particular will take your breath away. In The New York Hall of Science’s Great Hall, visitors will find the “Connected Worlds” exhibit which features floor-to-ceiling interactive, animated displays depicting six different environments found throughout the world. The environments change based on how visitors interact with the displays, showing the effect humans have on the eco-systems of the world. The photos are stunning!

47-01 111th Street, Corona, NY 11368


Meow Wolf.

Meow Wolf is quirky, bizarre and absolutely incredible. It’s actually an art collective featuring more than 200 artists displaying art created in a vast array of mediums from sculpture and painting to architecture, costuming, virtual reality, photography, narrative writing and much more. The museum itself features several mind-bending exhibits and offers visitors unique interactive experiences. There’s even a children’s learning center and a music venue.

1352 Rufina Cir, Santa Fe, NM 87507


The Renwick Gallery at Smithsonian American Art Museum.

I’ll be in D.C. later this year and the Renwick Gallery has made my must-visit list. The Renwick Gallery at the Smithsonian is part of America’s first collection of American art. While there are lots of beautiful contemporary works to view throughout the museum, the experience at the Renwick is breathtaking—it features the museum’s collection of contemporary craft and decorative art. There’s currently an immersive exhibit inspired by the Burning Man festival that is replete with extraordinary photo ops. Plus, admission is free!

Pennsylvania Avenue at 17th Street NW, Washington DC 20006


The Museum of Ice Cream.

The Museum of Ice Cream was established in 2016 and has yet to find a permanent home. Instead this trending spot has something of a pop-up model—temporarily transforming spaces into whimsical, pink wonderlands where you get to eat ice cream, swim in sprinkles and play in moon sand. It’s made appearances in New York City, Miami, Los Angeles and San Francisco. There’s a wall of ice cream facts near the entrance, but mostly MOIC is all about cutting loose and taking lots of pretty pictures.

www.museumoficecream.com for locations.


Museum of Illusions.

You know that crazy sidewalk art that makes it look like people are falling into a sinkhole or a tiger is walking down the street? The Museum of Illusions is filled with works of art just like that. You can turn yourself into a burger topping, box with Donald Trump or rappel down the side of a building all in one place—or at least take pictures to make it look like you’re doing all those things.

6751 Hollywood Blvd, Los Angeles, CA 90028


29 Rooms.

29 Rooms is a pop-up experience created by the folks over at Refinery29, focusing on interactive displays that celebrate “style, culture and creativity.” Each run of the pop-up features a different theme in a different city, from New York to San Francisco. It seems much like a mash-up of what you find MOIC and the Museum of Illusions, along with some even trendier, pop-culture-centric moments. Runs are very limited giving the experience an exclusive feel.

www.refinery29.com for locations.


The Neon Museum.

You cannot get more offbeat than The Neon Museum in Las Vegas. I mean, Vegas is synonymous with weird, and The Neon Museum is definitely embracing that. It’s essentially a graveyard for Las Vegas’ neon signs of years gone by. There are both indoor and outdoor exhibits where relics of Vegas’ history are displayed, and although it’s bizarre and perfect for Instagram, it’s also full of history. The signs seem to tell the stories not just of Vegas, but of design, architecture and technology. Visits are by guided tour only.

770 Las Vegas Boulevard North, Las Vegas, NV 89101


The Color Factory.

The Color Factory is another pop-up experience that seems like it was created just for social media. The 12,000-square-foot space features multi-media works by dozens of artists, all of which celebrate color, texture and material. A few highlights are the ballpit of all yellow balls, the confetti room and the rainbow ribbon exhibit. Unique foods from local vendors are also available for purchase.

575 Sutter Street, San Francisco, CA 94102

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