Museums

With the Mountain State’s beautiful scenery, rich history and storied past, it’s no wonder that there are so many museums and galleries showcasing these memories and works of art. Explore these incredible museums tucked in between the hills and charming towns of West Virginia.

Art

It’s easy to find a place showcasing beautiful masterpieces in the Mountain State.

The Huntington Museum of Art encompasses a permanent art collection of more than 16,000 objects, ten exhibition spaces, the only tropical and subtropical plant conservatory in the state, two outdoor sculpture courts, five studio workshops and a quarter-mile paved accessible Sensory Trail for the visually impaired. 

If you’re in Morgantown, be sure to check out the Art Museum of West Virginia University. This museum has more than 4,000 paintings, prints, works on paper, sculpture, and ceramics from across the globe and over centuries old.

The Ice House is located in the heart of historic Berkeley Springs, one of the 100 best small art towns in America, and showcases a unique gallery featuring more than 30 local and regional artists.

On the road? Make a stop at Tamarack’s David L. Dickirson Fine Arts Gallery. Every six to eight weeks, the gallery hosts a new and unique exhibition featuring artists that represent the best of West Virginia.

History & Heritage

West Virginia’s history is rich and diverse. The only state to be born out of the Civil War, the Mountain State is filled with one-of-a-kind historical destinations you have to see to believe. 

Take a journey through time as you trek from a pre-historic coal forest into an early western settlement and present-day West Virginia wonders. Located in the capital city of Charleston, the West Virginia Culture Center State Museum is free and open to the public.

Step back in time and into luxury at The Greenbrier Resort. There, there a former top-secret U.S. bunker once a hidden government relocation facility for Congress.

Walk the streets of Harpers Ferry National Historical Park for a look into the 1800s life through picturesque streets, museum exhibits, and national battlefields.

Children’s Museums

Enjoy replica cabins, blacksmithing, and a simpler way of life at the Heritage Farm Museum and Village in Huntington.

Little ones will love the adventure of donning a mine helmet and riding a train underground, as well as touring the mine museum. With a hands-on Youth Museum on-site, the Beckley Exhibition Coal Mine in Beckley is great for kids of all ages.

The Clay Center in Charleston makes learning fun for children and adults alike with art and science exhibits throughout the 2-story, 12,000-foot Avampato Discovery Museum.

Learn the history of collectable toys at the interactive Kruger Street Toy and Train Museum, then pick up your own intricate train sets at the gift shop. You can even get the conductor’s cap and whistle to match.

One-of-a-Kind Artifacts

West Virginia’s glasswares are so renowned that the distinct style has sprouted many unique displays around the state to feature the most iconic and sought-after glass. Visit the Oglebay Institute Glass Museum in Wheeling to see the largest piece of cut lead crystal. Or check out the Museum of American Glass in Weston and see over 20,000 pieces of glass on display. Be sure to see the Fostoria Glass Museum in Moundsville and learn about this one-of-a-kind glassware that was only made in the United States from 1887 to 1986.

Seeking something spooky? Visit the Archive of the Afterlife: National Museum of the Paranormal in Moundsville. Here you have the opportunity to experience energy from haunted items and learn about many different areas of the paranormal. Continue your quest for chilling thrills at the nearby West Virginia Penitentiary. Built in 1866 and decommissioned in 1995, this former state penitentiary now offers guided day tours, paranormal investigations and escape rooms.

If you’re nearby Parkersburg, it’s worth checking out the world’s only Mothman Museum in Point Pleasant. Here, you can experience the largest collection of souvenirs and memorabilia dedicated to this local legend.

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