Visiting the Cloisters has been high atop my “must do in NYC” list for quite a while now, and a few weeks ago, I finally made it happen. The Cloisters – a branch of the Met devoted to medieval European art and architecture – are tucked away at the far north end of Manhattan, and are an absolute pleasure to explore. I let the distance deter me from visiting for quite some time (you have to take the Subway to 190th and then walk for about 10 minutes through Fort Tryon Park), but, in the end, getting there didn’t take that long and the collection was well worth the effort.
While there are plenty of exhibits – complete with paintings, sculpture, jewelry, and more – for you to browse, the highlight for me was found outside the museum, not within. The courtyards at the Cloisters are supremely peaceful, bordered by lovely archways, and overflowing with a variety of interesting plants and flowers. The gardens have collections of medieval herbs and medicines, so there were many plants that I had never heard of before – and peeking at them was very interesting!
There are some places I visit – in New York, and elsewhere – and think, “Okay, that’s it. Now I can check that one off my list – but I don’t ever need to go back.” The Cloisters is not one of those places; it’s worth more than one visit, and I know I will return.
The Details: The Cloisters | 99 Margaret Corbin Drive, Fort Tryon Park, New York, NY 10040 | 212.923.3700