Frankfurt is a modern city located along the River Main, with its imposing gardens, scenic promenades, and beautiful architecture. It’s a historian’s paradise, home to thirty-nine museums and numerous venues for art exhibitions to inspire history buffs, art lovers, and geeks. You don’t even have to go too far as the city center is lined with some of Germany’s best museums.
Head to Museumsufer or the Museum Embankment, where you’ll find an ensemble of buildings of internationally and nationally recognized museums and art galleries. It doesn’t matter whether you’re looking for a general art museum with a collection of modern and contemporary art or a specialty museum like German Film and Transport museums. The impressive museums in Frankfurt will allow you to see history come alive and satisfy your curiosity.
Keep in mind that not all museums have lockers or sufficient space to accommodate suitcases and large bags. If you arrive early and can’t check in at your hotel but are eager to begin your exploration, it’s best to leave your bags at Bounce luggage storage in Frankfurt. It’s the safest and most convenient way to travel light and without burden.
German Film Museum
The Deutsches Filmmuseum is one of Germany’s seven film museums. It is housed in a historically listed villa constructed by Friedrich Sander in 1910. It’s a specialized museum dedicated to film, featuring temporary and permanent exhibitions. At the German Film Museum, you’ll discover the film’s origins, development, and future, as well as the impressive works of many filmmakers. It also offers interactive stations and models of historical devices related to the film industry.
Moviegoers or not, you’ll definitely enjoy exploring the film museum. It also serves as a cinema and a unique venue for digital platforms, educational programs, archives and collections, and research. The German Film Museum cinema has 131 seats, allowing visitors to experience film culture and watch stories from around the world. It shows works and videos relevant to the history of film and excellent contemporary productions.
If you want to visit, the Deutsches Filmmuseum is closed on Mondays and opens from Tuesday to Sunday, between 10 AM to 6 PM.
Address: Schaumainkai 41, 60596 Frankfurt
Admire spectacular art pieces at Städel Museum, an art museum established in 1815, making it one of the country’s oldest museums. It holds one of Germany’s most important art collections, including around 2,700 paintings, 600 sculptures, and a collection of graphics, prints, and drawings. The items on display at Stadel Museum cover a period from the 14th century until today, highlighting European art during the Renaissance era, early Modern art, the Baroque, and more.
You’ll find works by iconic masters like Goya, Rembrandt, Vermeer, Beckman, Picasso, and Monet. Other art pieces include the works of Francis Bacon, Wolfgang Tillmans, and Maria Sibylla.
You can also take advantage of talks, workshops, and other educational programs at the museum. It is open from 10 AM to 6 PM on Tuesdays and Wednesdays and from Fridays through Saturdays. On Thursdays, it remains open until 9 PM and closes on Mondays. Tours are available by appointment.
Address: Schaumainkai 63, 60596 Frankfurt
Museum of Modern Art
The Modern Art Museum in Frankfurt (Museum für Moderne Kunst) holds over 5,000 artworks from the 1960s to the present. It features beautiful pieces by national and international artists, making it one of the most important contemporary art institutions. It was founded in 1981 but didn’t open until ten years later under the direction of Jean-Christophe Ammann.
The museum has a few venues, including the Tower and the Zollamt. We recommend you check out the Tower if you’re visiting for the first time, featuring an exhibition space of about 2,000 square meters. It is located in the heart of the city, close to the station district and the main museum building. It is open daily except for Monday, from 11 AM to 6 PM on Tuesday and Thursday through Sunday, and from 11 AM to 7 PM on Wednesday.
Address: TaunusTurm, Taunustor 1, 60310 Frankfurt
Schirn Kunsthalle Frankfurt
One of the gorgeous museums in Frankfurt is nestled between the famous Romer square and the renowned Frankfurt Cathedral, next to the new Old Town. The Schirn Kunsthalle Frankfurt is a premier exhibition space for modern and contemporary art. Since it opened in 1986, it has hosted over 260 permanent and temporary exhibitions and can accommodate over 8.8 million visitors around the globe.
Expect to find something new when you visit the Schirn Kunsthalle. It’s a place for learning and discovery, focusing on historico-cultural and art-historical themes, trends, and discourses.
The museum is open on Tuesday and Friday to Sunday between 10 AM to 7 PM, then 10 AM to 10 PM on Wednesdays and Thursdays. If you can’t go to the museum but want to see what it has to offer, online tours are available every Sunday via Zoom for an hour at 5 PM.
Address: Römerberg, 60311 Frankfurt
Jewish Museum Frankfurt
Understand and delve deeper into the Jewish tradition, history, and culture at Jüdisches Museum Frankfurt. The Jewish Museum has two locations in Frankfurt – the Jewish Museum and Museum Judengasse – allowing visitors to gain insight into over 800 years of Jewish life in the city. No matter which area you visit, you’ll be able to discover the Jews’ multifaceted lives in one of Germany’s major cities from the Renaissance period and their Emancipation to the present day.
The Jewish Museum Frankfurt highlights the Jewish heritage in Frankfurt since 1800. It also features a library containing information on Judaism's culture, history, and religion. On the other hand, the Museum Judengasse includes the life of Europe’s oldest Jewish ghetto in Frankfurt. It provides different perspectives on daily Jewish life during the early modern period.
Address: Bertha-Pappenheim-Platz 1, 60311; Battonnstrasse 47, 60311 Frankfurt
Historisches Museum Frankfurt
The Historical Museum of Frankfurt is one of Europe’s largest city museums and one of the oldest in the city. It’s a center of information and knowledge and a place to reflect and discuss Frankfurt’s past, present, and future. It plays a key role in researching, collecting, preserving, and displaying the city’s cultural heritage through exhibitions and educational programs.
The museum boasts fifteen collector’s areas where you’ll find the different variety of objects about Frankfurt and city history. It includes photography, paintings, ceramics, metal, glass, graphic prints, media, and textiles. It also features a library, café, shop, and rooms for rent.
Address: Saalhof 1, 60311 Frankfurt
If you’re fascinated by sculptures from around the world and different eras, there’s no other place to go than Liebighaus. It’s an important sculpture museum boasting over 3,000 stunning works on around 1,600 meters of square space. It is centrally located on the banks of the Main River, near numerous fascinating sights and attractions.
Among the collection are sculptures from the ancient Greek, Roman, and Egyptian periods, the Renaissance, Middle Ages, Baroque, East Asia, and more. Together, they provide an insight into about 5,000 years of rich sculpture history. One of the collection highlights is the marble sculpture of Athena from around 450 BCE. It also features the terracotta altar created around 1500 by Andrea della Robbia.
Visitors are welcome to tour the building and lovely gardens before entering the museum. Then you can head to the expanded gallery wing with the antiquities collection. It is open on Tuesday and Wednesday, from 12 to 6 PM, Thursday from 10 AM to 9 PM, and Friday to Sunday between 10 AM and 6 PM.
Address: Schaumainkai 71, 60596 Frankfurt
Frankfurt Archaeological Museum
The Archäologisches Museum is dedicated to preserving, researching, and communicating the city’s history from the Neolithic era to the Early Modern time. It displays numerous items and findings that are of great importance for the city and the region from thorough excavations.
Check out the museum’s prehistoric collections, including graves from the Iron Age and Neolithic settlements, or see the impressive collection of religious monuments from worship places dedicated to the god Mithras. Head to the Ancient Orient department, and you’ll find artifacts from ancient Iran and several finds from Syria and Anatolia. No matter which part of the museum you explore, the objects here will allow you to see different cultures that have long been lost in the changing world.
Address: Karmelitergasse 1, 60311 Frankfurt
Senckenberg Natural History Museum
If you’re looking for fun things to do with kids in Frankfurt, take your little ones to the Senckenberg Natural History Museum. It’s one of Germany’s largest natural history museums, with numerous exhibits of insects, mammals, and insects. It also holds a large collection of massive dinosaurs, especially the dinosaur fossil with unique, well-preserved skin.
The museum features shows and exhibitions depicting human and animal life, the evolution of different creatures, and the earth’s transformation over millions of years. The area is expansive, housed in a building constructed between 1904 and 1907. It covers 6,000 square meters, so you’ll have plenty of areas to explore.
Address: Senckenberganlage 25, 60325 Frankfurt
Goethe House and Museum
For fans of Johann Wolfgang von Goethe’s works, the Goethe House and Museum is a must-visit place in Frankfurt. It’s one of the most remarkable memorial sites dedicated to a German poet, documenting the domestic surroundings where the Goethe family lived. It features outstanding collections that portray Goethe’s colorful life and interests beyond the literary world. Besides the manuscripts, letters, and books, it also features collection pieces and original furnishings in the poet’s residence.
Located in the old town, the Goethe House was the home of the Goethe family until 1795. It was where he was born in 1749 and lived with his sister Cornelia until he moved to Leipzig in 1765 to study law. Frankfurt Main HBF Station will get you there.
Address: Großer Hirschgraben 23-25, 60311 Frankfurt
What are the best free museums in Frankfurt?
While it’s not entirely free, the Jewish Museum in Frankfurt provides plenty of opportunities for visitors to explore the site and marvel at its exhibitions without spending a dime. Entrance to the building is free, so you can go to the café, library, and shop without paying the entrance fee. If you come last Saturday of the month, you can also enjoy a free museum visit.
Like the Jewish Museum, the entrance to Historisches Museum Frankfurt is also free every last Saturday of the month. It is also free among the students of Goethe University Frankfurt, the Frankfurt School of Applied Sciences, and the Frankfurt University of Music and Performing Arts.
Which are the best museums in Downtown Frankfurt?
With a wealth of excellent cultural attractions in the city, it’s hard to pick which are the best museums in Frankfurt. But if you have limited time to explore and can’t go far from the downtown area, be sure to check out the Stadel Art Museum. It has an outstanding collection of artworks and paintings from the 14th century.
But if one museum isn’t enough, head to Frankfurt’s unique Museum District on the north and south banks of the River main. It’s where you’ll find a collection of more than ten museums side by side and numerous exhibition sites. Purchase a Museumsufer Ticket to have access to as many Frankfurt museums in the area as you’d like.
Are there any cheap museums in Frankfurt?
If you’re traveling on a budget, you’re in luck, as many cost-effective museums in Frankfurt are available, including the Schirn Kunsthalle. Admission is free for kids under eight years old and the members of the Children’s Art Club, the Schirncircle, and Friends of the Schirn. There are also reduced ticket prices and cheaper online exhibitions.
You can also visit the Goethe House and Museum, offering reduced ticket prices and discounts. It allows visitors to enter by paying as low as one dollar.
Explore Frankfurt Museums
One factor that sets Frankfurt apart from other major German cities is its spectacular cultural offering. Besides its historic buildings, opera, and theater houses, its world-class museums are like no other. Lines of museums by the River Main will give you insight into the world and events that make the city what it is today. And while here, be sure to explore the shopping and dining options too!