The Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art, Kansas City

4.8
#2 of 21 in Museums in Kansas City
Must see · Art Museum · Museum
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Renowned for the building's neoclassical architecture and impressive permanent collection of Asian art, The Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art is beloved by Kansas City visitors and locals alike. The museum's Beaux Arts architecture style was inspired by the Cleveland Museum of Art and designed by architects Wight and Wight. A schoolteacher and art lover named Mary Atkins left money for the construction of this museum in 1911, and, though it was originally two separate galleries, the sites merged into one museum in 1983. While the museum is best known and celebrated for its extensive collection of Asian works, especially pieces from imperial China, it also boasts numerous American and European paintings, as well as photography and visiting exhibitions. This site hosts balls, speaker series, and other events year round. Make The Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art a centerpiece of your Kansas City vacation itinerary, and find what else is worth visiting using our Kansas City tour itinerary planning tool.
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The Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art reviews

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3,283 reviews
Google
4.8
TripAdvisor
  • This is a really great museum! We spent an afternoon here while visiting KC. Lots of great art and very well organized (i.e., NOT chaotic like some art museums). Benches to sit and enjoy some of the.....  more
    This is a really great museum! We spent an afternoon here while visiting KC. Lots of great art and very well organized (i.e., NOT chaotic like some art museums). Benches to sit and enjoy some of the.....  more »
  • Fantastic art museum! My husband and I spent 4 hours there and never made it through everything on the Plaza level, much less getting to the other two levels. I can't wait to go back! 
    Fantastic art museum! My husband and I spent 4 hours there and never made it through everything on the Plaza level, much less getting to the other two levels. I can't wait to go back!  more »
Google
  • Huge museum that is totally free. It has a ton of art for all interests. If you are the kind of art viewer that takes time with each piece, you might want to plan to spend the whole day there, or even go twice to fully digest it all. That being said, for people who are less into art, there is still plenty to look at and enjoy. They have an expansive painting and photography collections, as well as an outdoor sculpture park that makes a lovely short walk. There also is a restaurant and a fun, art-themed mini golf (costs $10) to do in addition to the free art viewing. The parking is $12 but there is plenty of free street parking in nearby neighborhoods if you prefer to walk. 100% recommend as a top thing to do while visiting KC
  • If you like Art, then you will absolutely love the Nelson-Atkins Museum of Art. It seems I go there a dozen times a year, just to be inspired and encouraged and moved. It's a magical place indeed. Kansas City is lucky to have a place like it here. It's a MUST SEE. And many people don't realize that even outdoors there is a ton of art sculptures to enjoy. During 2020 I'd do the exterior tour, and was moved by all the work. Amazing place!

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