Best of Philly

Best Overlooked Museum

2024 Best Victorian Natural History Museum

Wagner Free Institute of Science

The Wagner Free Institute of Science is an architecturally stunning natural history museum from the 1800s that hasn’t changed much since, well, the 1800s. It’s essentially a museum of what a Victorian natural history museum was actually like. Read More »

1700 West Montgomery Avenue, Philadelphia, PA Website

2024 Best American History Museum

Paul Robeson House & Museum

If you’re into music, don’t miss the Paul Robeson House & Museum, dedicated to the life of the interesting character who went from NFL player to Harlem Renaissance performer to political activist who found himself­ on the wrong side of the FBI and McCarthyism. He spent the latter part of his life at this property, which hosts concerts and exhibits about issues like MOVE. Read More »

4951 Walnut Street, Philadelphia, PA Website

2024 Best Aviation Museum

Naval Air Station Wildwood Aviation History Museum

The air station was once an important training base for Navy pilots, 42 of whom died here in crashes. These days, what was once Hangar One during WWII houses Huey and HH-52 Seaguard helicopters, F-16 and F-14 fighter jets, and a Russian MiG, among other war machines, some of which you can sit inside and realize how claustrophobic they were. Read More »

500 Forrestal Road, Cape May, NJ Website

2024 Best Mini Toy Museum

Matchbox Road Museum

Owner/curator Everett Marshall III calls it a “mini-museum.” But we’re not sure the term “mini” applies to a place that holds more than 60,000 little die-cast cars and all sorts of Matchbox advertisements and ephemera. Regardless, if you’re going to have a collection of 60,000 of anything, you might as well share it with the world. Read More »

15 Pearl Street, Newfield, NJ Website

2016 Best Hidden Gem Museum

The Wagner Free Institute of Science

A stone's throw from Temple's main campus, this 19th-century museum is often overlooked for seemingly mightier institutions (i.e., the Barnes), but its awe-inspiring architecture and vast array of fossils, taxidermies and skeletons, plus a particularly heebie-jeebies-inducing bug collection, make it worth a visit. Did we mention it's free? Read More »

1700 West Montgomery Avenue, Philadelphia, PA | 215-763-6529 | Website

2015 Best Overlooked Museum

Woodmere Art Museum

What ties together the seemingly random collection of contemporary and historic paintings, sculptures, photographs and prints here? They're all by artists from the Philadelphia region. The setting -- the Victorian mansion of the museum's founder, oil baron, politician and art collector Charles Knox Smith -- makes Woodmere like Philly's own version of the Frick. Read More »

9201 Germantown Avenue, Philadelphia, PA | 215-247-0476 | Website