Top 10 Best Museums to visit in India

India is a land of cultural history, traditional, architectural beauty, unique customs and much more. The museums of the country is a window into the majestic past of the land. All the major destinations of the country holds a collection of museum famous for one or more key factors.

Here are the Top 10 museums of the country, which you ought to visit during your vacation.

1. National Museum, Delhi


National Museum, Delhi

This museum was constructed in 1949. This is the best place to visit to know more about the railways of the country, ancient paintings, artifacts, antique jewelry, manuscripts, art works, decorative items and much more.

The museum holds a separate Buddhism section, which holds Buddhist ruins, statues, articles, stupa remains and much more. The remnants of Gautam Buddha is also found in this museum. Apart from these, there are numerous other galleries to explore in this museum.

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2. Indian Museum, Kolkata

Indian Museum, Kolkata

Indian Museum, Kolkata

Built in 19th century, this museum is a quite a large collection with unique galleries including  skeletons, ornaments, paintings, armors, scientific works, creative art works and much more. You can find collections pertaining to geology, archaeology, economic beauty, art and much more.

This is one of the oldest museums in the world. This is an important tourist destination in the city for those who love to look through the past of the nation, in all aspects.

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3. Madras Government Museum

Madras museum

Madras Government Museum

Located in Chennai of Tamil Nadu, this museum was built in 19th century. The museum holds numerous artifacts belonging to various fields like geology, botany, anthropology and zoology. The museum has separate galleries for different empires that held the state in the ancient times.

You can find galleries of artifacts, books, paintings and others pertaining to Chaulkya, Vijayanagar, Chola and others. There is also a small section for children. You can find a very large library in this museum that holds a large number of books and all the important dailies until date.

4. Chhatrapati Shivaji Vastu Museum, Mumbai

Chhatrapati Shivaji Vastu Sangrahalaya

Chhatrapati Shivaji Vastu Museum, Mumbai

Located very close to Gateway of India, this 20th century museum is an important tourist landmark. There are three sections of collections in this museum namely, the archaeology section, art section and natural history section. During the First World War, the museum was used as a military hospital.

Later, the museum was inaugurated by Lady Llyod. Today, it holds more than 50,000 exhibits starting from Indus Valley civilization to print gallery. You can find collections relevant to Chinese civilization, Japanese Civilization and much more. The first floor of the museum holds art works. The second floor holds European art, armor, Mughal artifacts and others. You can find audio guides for an informed tour around the museum.

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5. Shakar’s International Doll Museum, Delhi

International Doll Museum in Delhi

International Doll Museum, Delhi

This is a unique museum, which would interest children and adults. Are you fed up of history and dug-up artifacts? This is the place to enjoy something different. As the name indicates, this museum holds a large collection of dolls.

There are numerous collection of dolls from India and other parts of the world like Africa, New Zealand, Australia, UK, USA and others. There is a separate gallery for dolls of commonwealth countries, Middle East countries and other independent countries. You can find almost all kinds of dolls here. Indian doll collection holds dolls with traditional attire of each state of the country.

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6. Salar Jung Museum, Hyderabad

salar Jung Museum

Salar Jung Museum, Hyderabad

This is a grand museum, which is dedicated for just art. You can find large collection of paintings, carvings, metallic works, textile works and others. Not just from different parts of the country, you can find artifacts from other countries like Egypt, China, North America, Nepal, Burma and others.

This museum holds more than 1.1 million display articles, spanning for 2 floors and 38 galleries. Top exhibits to spot in this museum are daggers of Mughal emperors, 19th century Veiled Rebecca statue, Margaretta in the mirror, wood painting, porcelain work of 2nd century, Quran collection, Clock collection and others.

7. National Rail Museum, Delhi

National Rail Museum

National Rail Museum, Delhi

This is the place for train lovers. You can find 100 life-size Indian trains of ancient and modern times. The museum covers 10 acres of land. There is a small toy train, which will take you through various galleries and exhibits. The galleries hold historic photographs, antique train décor and essential parts, working models, signaling tools, blue prints and much more.

The main exhibits of this museum include Patiala State Monorail of 1907, Fairy Queen, Fire Engine of 1914, Saloon of yesteryear kings, electric locomotive of 1928 and many others.

8. Calico Museum, Ahmedabad

calico museum

Calico Museum, Ahmedabad

This is an important museum for those who love painting, art works and cultural artifacts. This museum was inaugurated in 1949 by Gautam Sarabhi and Gira Sarabhai. These siblings collected fabrics, paintings, art works and other artifacts of yester era from ancient times to Mughal era. You can find exhibits that date as early as 15th century. The religious textile gallery holds collections of Vallabha Sampradaya, a religious philosopher.

The Historic textile gallery holds dresses and accessories of Mughal period. It also includes weapons, carpets, hamlets and others. You can also find textiles of varying materials, shields, Persian carpets, shawls and many others. The embroidery collection of notable people such as Akbar, Sarada Purnima, Ramanavami, Dharana and others are includes in this museum. In the technology gallery, you can find books related to textile and arts, models of equipment used by weavers and fashion designers and, many others.

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9. Dr. Bhau Daji Lad Museum, Mumbai

Dr. Bhau Daji Lad Museum, Mumbai

Dr. Bhau Daji Lad Museum, Mumbai

This is a museum of 19th century. Out of the numerous museum, this is an important one. In the past, this museum was called as Victoria Albert Museum. This museum holds collection of exhibits that express the culture and history of the land. You can find archaeological discoveries, clay models, silver articles, ancient maps and others.

In the Kamalnayan Bajaj gallery, you can find the models of ancient Mumbai city, blueprints, documents, lifestyle of people, entertainment and so on. The founder’s gallery holds a large collection of portraits. The museum plaza holds many recreational activities for the tourists. Apart from these, you can find galleries of Natural History, Industry and Arts, Economy, Geology and others.

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10. Napier Museum, Thiruvananthapuram

Napier Museum, Thiruvananthapuram

Napier Museum, Thiruvananthapuram

This 19th century museum of Kerala is the oldest museum in the state. This museum gets its name from the Governor of Madras, Napier. Built in Indi-Saracenic architectural style in 19th century, this museum holds collection of textiles, unusual objects, archaeological discoveries, bronze deities, carvings on ivory, stone sculptures, handicraft articles and so on. This museum provides a window to the ancient culture and lifestyle of ancient Kerala.

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Apart from the above-mentioned ten museums, you can find numerous sets of museums in each state. These museums are not just about the history.

You can find many interesting museums around the country like International Toilet Museum, New Delhi, INS submarine museum, Fossil Park museum, Human brain museum, Baywatch wax museum and so on. Most of the museums are not open throughout the week. Check the official site before you plan your itinerary.

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