The Museum of Sex is without a doubt one of New York City’s most unique attractions. Located on 5th Avenue just north of Madison Square Park, roughly halfway between the Empire State Building and the Flatiron Building, the Museum of Sex is full of interactive exhibits that explore human sexuality in all its fun and flirty complexity. Among the many highlights found here today is Super Funland, an erotic carnival installation that occupies four floors of the museum.
Museum of Sex History
The Museum of Sex first opened its doors to the public in 2002. Its debut exhibit, which ran for roughly one year, was entitled “NYC Sex: How New York City Transformed Sex in America.” This groundbreaking show was devoted to detailing the ways in which New York’s many sexual subcultures had impacted attitudes toward sex all over the country.
Since its opening, the Museum of Sex has produced almost three-dozen unique exhibitions, as well as a half-dozen well-regarded virtual installations. Throughout the years, the creation of these fascinating works has been guided by the museum’s acclaimed board of advisors, which includes academics, artists, and experts in sexuality, gender, history, and more.
What’s at the Museum of Sex
During its twenty-year history, the Museum of Sex has sponsored exhibitions on a variety of subjects as diverse as masturbation, pornography, desire, cam performers, sex work, erotic art, and the female gaze, to name just a few. Though the lineup of attractions here is ever-changing, these past exhibits speak to the depth and breadth of content visitors to the Museum of Sex can expect to see.
There are a number of current exhibitions running at the Museum of Sex, but the headliner would have to be the popular Super Funland: Journey into the Erotic Carnival. This four-floor space has been designed to be an innovative and amusing experience. Along the way, you’ll have your pick of delights to engage like a love-potion dispenser, breast-themed bouncy castle, erotic mechanical bull, animatronic Tunnel of Love, and much, much more.
You’ll also not want to miss the porn screen-test booth, which lets you pretend to audition for a role as the world’s newest porn star. And, if you work up a thirst while having a titillating time at the Museum of Sex, you can quench it by visiting the Carnal Carnival Bar, which serves some unforgettable signature sex cocktails.
Other current exhibits at the Museum of Sex well-worth checking out are Artifact (xxx): Selections from Secret Collections, which presents standout items from the museum’s 15,000-piece permanent collection; and Porno Chic to Sex Positivity: Erotic Content & the Mainstream, 1960 till Today, which charts pornography’s emergence as an increasingly accepted form of media over the past 60 years.
Tips for Visiting the Museum of Sex
- The Museum of Sex is included on several money saving tourist passes including the New York Pass and NY Explorer Pass.
- Given its subject material, the Museum of Sex limits admission to those individuals over the age of 18 years old. You must display a valid ID to enter the museum.
- The Museum of Sex stops admitting guests two hours before the posted closing time. This means that, even if the museum says it’s scheduled to be open until 10:00pm on the day you intend to visit, you will want to be sure and arrive by 8:00pm.
- The Museum of Sex strongly recommends you purchase your tickets ahead of time. This may be done online. Walk-up tickets are also available at the museum box office.
- Visitors are asked to arrive 15 minutes before the admission time listed on their tickets.
- If you’re planning a big day out in New York City and hoping to fit a visit to the Museum of Sex into your busy schedule, be advised that the typical guest spends about 1.5 to 2 hours here.