World’s most visited museums – part two


Every year, millions of tourists, culture vultures and art lovers pour into the world’s museums. There are thousands of collections that attract over 100,000 visitors. Just over 60 institutions manage to draw over a million visitors. The premier league of museums are ten world class institutions that bring in between 3.5 and 9.3 million visitors. This is part two of a two-part piece highlighting the next five in the top 10. 

The top five most popular museums are clearly in the A List of global cultural institutions. The next five might not share quite the same level of name recognition as the Louvre, Met or British Museum, but they are still world class museums and galleries.

6 - 10 museums by visitor numbers

The top five institutions represent some of the most established and venerable art collections in the world. The next five are dominated by institutions specialising in more modern art – the Tate Modern, Centre Pompidou and Musee d’Orsay all focus on work from the nineteenth century onwards.

The Tate Modern and the Centre Pompidou are the leading collections of modern art in the UK and France respectively (the Centre Pompidou contains France’s National Museum of Modern Art). The Musee d’Orsay was intended to bridge the gap between the historic collections of the Louvre and the contemporary collections in the Pompidou.

Washington, D.C.’s National Gallery of Art and Taipei’s National Palace Museum are more traditional collections. The National Gallery of Art is one of many national collections in America’s capital city, but it is not part of the Smithsonian Institution. The latter, a collection of museums, cumulatively entrances 30 million visitors a year.

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