With the exception of toddler, I highly recommend going to The Met with your kids. If you don’t think they’ll handle actually being at the art, stop by and have a snack and people watch from the steps, a common practice made famous by Gossip Girl.
We met up with my friend J and her daughter A for our trip to the museum. We stopped and did a wefie–but you can tell who was into this idea and who wasn’t.
Here is my advice for the museum with kids. Give them a notebook and some crayons or colored pencils and let them sketch. No, you won’t get to hit many exhibits (we did the costume institute and the Egyptian stuff) and no, you probably won’t stop and stare at the things you might most want to see, nor will they necessarily be interested in what you’re interested in.
If the goal is to get your kids into museums and for them to have fun, let them drive the bus so to speak. The girls focused on this random bit of temple with hieroglyphs and the statue of Sekhmet below.
They managed a good two hours in the museum before hunger and boredom started to kick in, and we got them out of there quick.
Things I wanted but did not actually see include the impressionist gallery. If you want to really explore the Met, get a sitter and strap on your walking shoes and still accept you won’t see it all.
As a heads up, there was no obvious park access from the Museum that I saw. Don’t plan to go to the park directly from the museum–it’s a long walk down 5th Ave to get to an entrance. There also isn’t a great kid’s section of the Museum gift shop–there are some kid books, and in a separate gift shop closer to the coat room there were some toys, but overall I found the gift shop disappointing for kids.
The Met has a suggested donation, but you can go for free which makes this not only a great cultural experience, but an affordable one as well.