San Mateo, California, is a city located in the heart of the San Francisco Bay Area, surrounded by a wide variety of cultural and artistic institutions. If you're looking for a fun and educational day trip, there are plenty of museums nearby to explore. In this article, we'll highlight some of the best museums in the area, their geo-locations, exhibit highlights, and parking and accessibility information.
Peninsula Museum of Art
1777 California Dr, Burlingame, CA 94010
Located just a few miles north of San Mateo in Burlingame, the Peninsula Museum of Art is a hidden gem that is definitely worth a visit. This museum features contemporary art by local and international artists, as well as a variety of workshops and classes for adults and children. Some of the current exhibit highlights include a show by abstract painter Hung Liu and a collection of ceramic sculptures by artist Cheryl R. Riley. Parking is free, and the museum is fully accessible.
Cantor Arts Center
328 Lomita Dr, Stanford, CA 94305
The Cantor Arts Center, located on the campus of Stanford University, is one of the best art museums in the Bay Area. The museum's collection includes over 38,000 works of art from around the world, including paintings, sculptures, and decorative arts. Current exhibit highlights include a show of contemporary Native American art and a collection of works by renowned sculptor Auguste Rodin. Parking is available for a fee, and the museum is fully accessible.
Hiller Aviation Museum
601 Skyway Rd, San Carlos, CA 94070
The Hiller Aviation Museum, located just a few miles south of San Mateo in San Carlos, is a must-visit for anyone interested in aviation and aerospace. This museum features over 50 aircraft, including historic planes, helicopters, and spacecraft. Some of the exhibit highlights include a replica of the Wright Brothers' 1903 Flyer, an original Mercury space capsule, and a collection of vintage model airplanes. Parking is free, and the museum is fully accessible.
Museum of the African Diaspora
685 Mission St, San Francisco, CA 94105
Located about 18 miles north of San Mateo in San Francisco's Yerba Buena neighborhood, the Museum of the African Diaspora is a fascinating museum that explores the history and culture of people of African descent around the world. The museum's collection includes a variety of art, artifacts, and multimedia exhibits. Current exhibit highlights include a show on the Black Lives Matter movement and an exhibit on the life and legacy of Nelson Mandela. Parking is available for a fee, and the museum is fully accessible.
Pier 15, The Embarcadero, San Francisco, CA 94111
Located about 20 miles north of San Mateo on the waterfront in San Francisco, the Exploratorium is an interactive science museum that is fun for all ages. This museum features hundreds of exhibits that explore science, art, and perception. Some of the exhibit highlights include a tornado machine, a giant kaleidoscope, and a collection of optical illusions. Parking is available for a fee, and the museum is fully accessible.
In conclusion, if you're looking for a fun and educational day trip near San Mateo, California, there are plenty of museums to explore. Whether you're interested in contemporary art, aviation history, or science and technology, there's something for everyone in the Bay Area's museums. So grab your family and friends and start exploring.