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You Have to Visit these 18 Museums

Historically, museums started as private collections of individuals, families, or institutions of curious and rare artifacts and other objects. The first museum known to historians is the Ennigaldi-Nanna's museum, which operated in 530 B.C.E. in what is now modern-day Iraq. It was run by princess Ennigaldi, daughter of the last king of the Babylonian Empire.

The traveler community of the website TripAdvisor recently created a list of the best museums in the world. If you like to travel and enjoy the arts, history, and science, you’re going to want to visit all of these museums. If you’re not sure, use this list to help you choose which museums you should visit.

The Gold Museum (Museo del Oro) - Bogota, Colombia

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The Museum houses the largest collection of pre-Columbian gold artifacts, with over 55,000 pieces.

Museum of New Zealand - Wellington, New Zealand

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Known as "Te Papa Tongarewa", the museum holds several collections, including the most diverse collection of colossal squids, fossils of ancient local flora and fauna, as well as cultural textile and photography of the natives.

Centro de Arte Contemporânea Inhotim - Brumadinho, Brazil

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When developers planned to destroy the area around his farm in the 1980's, Bernardo Paz began buying the land, eventually owning 5,000 acres, which he turned into a botanical garden. He later invited Brazillian artists to add their art to the garden and by 2008 it has become the most popular art museum in South America.

Qin Terra-cotta Warriors and Horses Museum - Xi'an, China

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The mausoleum was discovered by chance in 1974 by Chinese farmers who were digging a well. Further excavation uncovered over 9,000 terra cotta statue of soldiers, chariots and horses. Work on the mausoleum began in 230 B.C.E. when Emperor Qin Shi Huang ascended to the throne. It is now a UNESCO World Heritage site.

Smithsonian Air and Space Museum - Washington DC, U.S.A.

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The Smithsonian museum holds the world's largest collection of historic aircrafts and spacecrafts. It houses many Nazi-era prototypes, as well as the famous (or infamous) Enola Gay, The B-29 plane that dropped the nuclear bomb on Hiroshima at the end of WWII.

Musee du Louvre - Paris, France

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Considered the most famous museum in the world, the Louvre has over 35,000 items on exhibition, dating from all the way back to prehistoric time and up to the 21st century. It is the permanent home of the Mona Lisa, the Code of Hammurabi, Venus de Milo, and many more famous works of art.

Instituto Ricardo Brennand - Recife, Brazil

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The Ricardo Brennand institute is comprised of a museum, a garden, a library, and an art gallery, housing one of the largest collections of armor in the world.

British Museum - London, England

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With over 8 million works, this museum is dedicated to human culture and history. The art represents the progression of human cultures from the earliest known creations, up to modern pieces of art. Like all official museums in Britain, it has no admission fees and is free to the public.

Vasa Museum - Stockholm, Sweden

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The most visited museum in Scandinavia, the Vasa museum holds the only intact 17th-century ship in the world - The Vasa: a 64-gun warship that sank on its maiden voyage in 1628.

The National Gallery - London, England

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Founded in 1824, the National Gallery holds over 2,000 paintings, ranging from the 13th century to 1900. It is the fourth most visited museum in the world. To protect the paintings during WWII, they were all moved to a quarry and the building was used for musical shows, meant to raise morale.

The National WWII Museum - New Orleans, U.S.A.

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The National WWII Museum was built to emphasize the American experience during WWII and in the battle of Normande in particular.

Yad Vashem Holocaust Memorial - Jerusalem, Israel

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The core of Yad Vashem's creation was to commemorate non-Jews who worked to save Jewish people during the holocaust, at personal risk and often high financial costs. Those recognized as "The Righteous Among the Nations" by the state of Israel are commemorated in the Garden of the Righteous. The museum holds the world's largest collection of testimonials of holocaust victims, as well as the largest collection of paintings produced by Jewish and gentile victims of the Nazi occupation between 1933-1945.

The Acropolis Museum - Athens, Greece

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Located on the archeological site of the Acropolis, the museum was built to house every artifact and building found on-site. It also lies on the archaeological site of Makrygianni, the ruins of a part of Roman Athens, and early Byzantine Athens.

Accademia Gallery - Florence, Italy

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The Accademia Gallery holds one of the most famous statues in the world - Michelangelo's David. It holds more of Michelangelo's works, as well as works by Andrea del Sarto, Domenico Ghirlandaio, Paolo Uccello, and Sandro Botticelli.

The Getty Center - Los Angeles, U.S.A.

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The former home of industrialist J. Paul Getty, the Getty Museum is located on the hills of L.A.; it is the home of over 44,000 works of art, ranging from Greek and Roman time, side by side with modern sculptures.

State Hermitage Museum - St. Petersburg, Russia

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One of the largest and oldest museums in the world, the Hermitage was originally the winter palace of Russian Emperors. It holds prehistoric artifacts, Ancient Egyptian antiquities, jewelry, and many more pieces from Russia and Europe’s history.

National Museum of Anthropology - Mexico City, Mexico

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The national museum of Mexico is also the most visited museum in the country. It holds many anthropological and archeological artifacts from the pre-Columbian era of Mexico, including the famous Aztec Calendar stone.

Art Institute of Chicago - Chicago, U.S.A.

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Chosen as THE BEST museum in the world by Trip Advisor, the Art Institute of Chicago is indeed a place any art connoisseur must visit. Housing more than 260,000 works of art, the Art Institute encompasses over 5,000 years of human existence and art, with works from Monet and Renoir, Matisse and Toulouse-Lautrec, and many other famous artists. If you ever visit Chicago, do yourself a service and clear a whole day for a visit in this amazing place!

H/T: Distractify.com
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