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5 Weird Museum Rules and Why They’re Important

One of my favourite things to do is visit museums. They’re my safe place, full of amazing things. And I hope to encourage all of you to visit them too, because cultural heritage belongs to everyone.


Before you go exploring a cultural institution, there are a few things you need to remember and keep in mind. Every time I travel or go to a museum teaming with people, I’m always astounded and annoyed by people NOT FOLLOWING THE RULES.

Some museum rules sounds strange, but they’re there for a purpose so listen to them!

I’ve compiled a list of all the museum rules I see being broken and I’m here to tell you why you need to follow them. Because if you don’t… I will find you, and I will scold you like an old German woman does when you J-walk across the street.

1.) Do not touch the art

This is not okay!

Museums are filled with beautiful, amazing things. Some of which aren’t behind the glass. THIS DOES NOT MEAN YOU ARE ALLOWED TO TOUCH IT. First of all, no one wants your grubby fingers getting a masterpiece all dirty. Everyone’s got oils on their hands that can really damage works. Also, the more you touch, the more you erode, and the more likely things can get damaged. So do what the little kiddies on school trips are told to do: hands behind you back!

2.) No backpacks or large bags, or strollers

Imagine going through a busy museum gallery filled with Greek busts on columns. Bad. News. Bears. You only have proper spatial recognition for your own body, not the things that are attached to it. That’s why guards tell you to wear them on your front sometimes so you can actually see the bag in front of you and therefore move accordingly. Same thing goes with strollers. Moms nowadays are buying the SUV strollers with all the extra amenities. Sure your kid is riding in style, but that thing takes up SPACE. And manoeuvring it around galleries can be difficult. Bring the small stroller, or alternative means of transportation for your child. Safety first.

3.) No Selfie-Sticks

Image via momoforsale / Shutterstock

This is a new rule that’s been implemented. People increasingly want to take selfies with art. But don’t be THAT person with a selfie stick in a museum. Not only is it annoying for other people, it’s dangerous! No one wants you swinging around a stick in a place filled with delicate objects. There’s news stories coming out all the time about people not paying attention while using them and backing up into something and knocking it over. No selfie is worth that. Trust me.

4.) No food or drink in the museum

Museum-ing takes a lot out of you and it only makes sense you’d want to bring snacks to keep you going. But if we all brought food into museums, leaving our little crumbs everywhere we wander, we’re going to attract pests. And those things suck not only for us, but they can also seriously damage artworks. Let’s not even get to the whole food dropping on museum pieces.

When you plan on going to a museum, arrive prepared. Carb up beforehand and power through. You got this.

5.) No flash photography

This one has largely been debunked as having detrimental effects on museum artefacts, but it’s still a good thing to practice. Flash photography isn’t needed inside museums! The artworks won’t look any better with that crappy light you shine on it, it’s annoying to everyone else, and half the time, it reflects on the glass! Modern technology has now progressed enough that you can take amazing photos in low-light situations, even on you phone. So there’s no reason to subject the world to your blinding white inferno.

So those are my top 5 museum rules that need to be followed NO. MATTER. WHAT. Thank you. Rant over.

Have any questions? Email me!


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