Designed to resemble a huge, sprawling cabinet of curiosities, the museum contains more than 20,000 medical specimens. Popular attractions include the tallest skeleton on display in North America, slides of Albert Einstein’s brain, the shared liver of “original” Siamese twins Chang and Eng, and the preserved body parts and corpses of some of America’s most infamous circus freakshow performers. Each human abnormality featured in the museum is displayed alongside a drawing, photograph or wax model of its corresponding normality, making a visit here both educational and startling—though definitely not for the squeamish.
You can tour the museum independently—maps and scavenger hunt guides are available online to download before your visit. The museum is also a stop on many hop-on hop-off sightseeing tours, making it easy to squeeze in a visit among Philadelphia’s many other attractions and museums.
Things to Know Before You Go
- Mütter Museum is a must-do, offbeat activity in Philadelphia.
- You can save on the admission fee with the Philadelphia Pass.
- The museum is wheelchair accessible.
- Photography is strictly prohibited.
- There's discounted admission on Monday and Tuesday.
How to Get There
The closest SEPTA trolley stop is Market and 22nd Street, on the green line, just a half-block north of the museum. To walk to the Museum from 30th Street Amtrak Station, walk east on Market Street across the Schuylkill River bridge toward 22nd Street then turn right on 22nd St. It’s around a 10-minute walk. Drivers will find metered on-street parking around the museum.
When to Get There
The Mütter Museum is open daily from 10 am to 5 pm. It is closed on Thanksgiving Day, December 24, December 25, and January 1.The College of Physicians hosts regular events in the building, including classical music concerts and lectures: check the calendar on the website.
The Strange and Unusual
Those with an interest in the offbeat should add a visit to The Strange and Unusual to their Philadelphia itinerary. This unique boutique is filled with interesting—and somewhat creepy and macabre—items such as voodoo dolls, preserved stillborn animal fetuses, and taxidermied animals, including such oddities as a three-headed duckling.
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