The Soumaya Museum is one of Mexico City's most identifiable buildings and most comprehensive art museums, boasting a massive collection of more than 66,000 works. The art on display here features works spanning 30 centuries and ranging from ancient works to modern masters. Plus, the building itself can be a treat to visit given its unique sleek and sweeping design that makes it stand out from anything else in the entire city.

Whether you're an art lover or just curious, a visit to the Soumaya Museum will be one of the most memorable aspects of any trip to Mexico City. Kids and adults alike can find something enjoyable here, thanks to the sheer diversity of artwork on display. It's easy to find something that speaks to you when there's so much to see and explore. Typically, a visit here lasts about 2 to 3 hours.

Soumaya Museum in Mexico City - one of the highlights of 10 Best Free Things to Do in Mexico City and 11 Best Museums in Mexico City (Read all about Mexico City here)

photo by Alejandro (CC BY 2.0) modified

What are the highlights of Soumaya Museum in Mexico City?

The Soumaya Museum is divided up into 6 different levels, and they each have something to offer, but the entrance alone is home to several impressive pieces, including a mural by Diego Rivera. The first level is home to decorative arts of gold and silver, like coins and medals. Temporary exhibitions are located on level 2, and level 3 is home to European works and Novohispanic pieces from artists like El Greco, Artemisia Gentileschi, and Peter Paul Rubens.

Arriving at the 4th level of the Soumaya Museum, you'll be greeted with Impressionist works all the way to the avant-garde. Landscape works are popular, and you can see works from Monet, van Gogh, and Joan Miro. Level 5 is home to a special temporary collection, while level 6 highlights the Rodin era and surrealist art, which includes sculptures by Salvador Dali.

photo by Dan (CC BY 2.0) modified

A brief history of Soumaya Museum in Mexico City

The Soumaya Museum wasn't always housed in the building it is today. It originally opened in 1994 in Plaza Loreto of San Angel, which is on the south side of town. It only took 2 years for the museum to achieve heritage recognition from ICOMOS. In 2011, however, things changed, as the main collection was moved to a brand-new building with 170,000 square feet of space in Plaza Carso.

The new Soumaya Museum building is 6 stories tall, towering 151 feet in total. Designed by Fernando Romero, it sports a curved design and has 16,000 hexagonal aluminium tiles on its exterior. The new museum's location was officially inaugurated in early 2011 and opened to the public just a month later. It was all funded by Carlos Slim, who is one of the richest people in the world.

What else is good to know about Soumaya Museum in Mexico City?

There are a few things to keep in mind when visiting the Soumaya Museum. It's the perfect destination for those travelling on a budget, as access is completely free, and it's open 365 days per year, so it's easy to work into your itinerary. Accessibility services include access to certified guide dogs, tactile visits to serve the blind and visually impaired, and accessible ramps and lifts.

When visiting the Soumaya Museum, you can also enjoy quite a few nearby attractions. If you find yourself leaving the museum near sunset, you may want to head a short distance north to Autocinema Coyote, a drive-in theatre. A bit further to the southeast, you can get to Bosque de Chapultepec, which is a thriving park that has its own zoo, museum, and castle among the vibrant greenery.

photo by Rod Waddington (CC BY-SA 2.0) modified

Soumaya Museum in Mexico City

Location: Blvd. Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra, Granada, Miguel Hidalgo, 11529 Ciudad de México, CDMX, Mexico

Open: Daily from 10.30 am to 6.30 pm

Phone: +52 55 1103 9800