When seeking to explore the worlds of art, history, science, and culture, the Goodyear, Arizona, area has many museums to visit in nearby towns and cities. An outing to a museum is an entertaining and educational activity you can enjoy with the whole family. Our Crème de la Crème staff recommends five museums you need to visit near Goodyear.

Arizona Capitol Museum

The majestic facade of the Arizona Capitol Museum near Goodyear, AZ

Arizona Capitol Museum by Gage Skidmore is licensed with CC BY-SA 2.0

To delve into Arizona’s cultural heritage and history, visit the Arizona Capitol Museum at 1700 W. Washington St. in Phoenix. You’ll discover various informative exhibits such as USS Arizona: Flagship of the Fleet, which documents the historic role of this battleship, which sunk during the attack on Pearl Harbor. There are also exhibits devoted to interactive experiences, like the model trains in the Steel Rails Connecting the Copper State exhibit.

The Arizona Capitol Museum also has a Historic Mining Communities exhibit featuring a collection of rocks, minerals, and mining artifacts sourced from areas in Arizona. The museum hosts art exhibits dedicated to the works of Hugo Medina and local artist Frank Ybarra. There is also a fun rendering of the Flag of Arizona, depicted by 114,006 Lego bricks, each representing the total square miles in the state. The museum is open Monday through Friday from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m., and admission is free.

West Valley Art Museum

The West Valley Art Museum at 8401 W. Monroe St. in Peoria should be one of your stops if you want to experience art, inspiration, and community. The museum is committed to fostering a greater understanding of art through its varied exhibits. The permanent collection showcases works from Arizona artists and more than 300 fine art prints from around the world, representing over 75 countries. The museum’s Ethnic Dress exhibit highlights Asian, African, and Latin American cultures through hundreds of artifacts, textiles, and costumes.

The West Valley Art Museum also hosts community programs, including concerts, demonstrations, classes, lectures, and appraisal days. The museum operates at the Peoria City Hall Art Gallery. Gallery hours are Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and Thursday from noon to 6 p.m. The museum offers free admission to the public.

Arizona Science Center

Immerse yourself in the world of science by visiting the Arizona Science Center at 600 E. Washington St. in Phoenix. Many exhibits are geared toward children and teens but are enjoyable for all ages. The Arizona Science Center features several hands-on exhibits with live demonstrations that bring science to life. An exciting part of the museum is its state-of-the-art Dorrance Planetarium, dedicated to the wonders of astronomy. You can also view immersive video programming in the five-story IMAX theater.

The Arizona Science Center hosts CAMP INNOVATION during spring break for curious young minds to continue learning when they’re not in school. CAMP INNOVATION is designed to be inspiring, amusing, and educational, and campers can explore S.T.E.M. (science, technology, engineering, mathematics) learning. Some of the camp programs include Dogs! A Science Camp for grades 1 and 2 and Impossible Science for grades 3 through 6.

The Arizona Science Center is open daily from 10:30 a.m. to 4 p.m., and admission costs are as follows: 

  • Adult: $21.95.
  • Seniors (65+): $19.95.
  • Child (3-17): $15.95.
  • Child (under 3): Free.

Entrance to the Dorrance Planetarium, Irene P. Flinn Theater, and select featured exhibitions require additional tickets.

Heard Museum

Come to the Heard Museum at 2301 N. Central Ave. in Phoenix to discover unique American Indian art on display. The exhibits often focus on first-person stories of American Indian culture and diverse mediums of contemporary art. One of the permanent exhibits, In the Service Of: American Indian Veteran Artists and Tributes, showcases the reasons why Native Americans enlist in the U.S. military at a higher rate than other ethnicities. Native American veterans express their experiences through their art and tribute art.

The Heard Museum has another permanent exhibition, which has newly opened, called Substance of Stars, which conveys Indigenous communities’ perspectives throughout various periods displayed through multiple artistic mediums. This exhibit incorporates knowledge of the sky, their spiritual values, and Indigenous languages, which combine to form Native origin stories, creating the foundations of Native American identities.

The museum is open Monday through Sunday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and closed for certain holidays. Save 10% when you purchase tickets online. Advance admission rates are: 

  • Adults: $22.50.
  • Seniors 65+: $18.
  • Students with ID: $9.
  • Children 6-17: $9.
  • Children 5 & under: Free.
  • American Indians with Tribal ID or CIB: Free.

Walk-up admission prices for all museum guests are slightly higher.

Phoenix Art Museum

Step into the Phoenix Art Museum at 1625 N. Central Ave. in Phoenix to admire art from around the globe. You can view art from many periods and cultures, including Old Master paintings, haute couture fashion, contemporary Latin American art, manga-inspired Japanese art, and art of the American West. The museum has rotating current exhibits as well as permanent exhibitions.

One of the most beloved permanent exhibits is the fireflies infinity mirror room, a mixed-media installation with LED lights by Japanese artist Yayoi Kusama. This magical installation engulfs you in lights resembling fireflies’ luminous glow. 

The Phoenix Art Museum is open Wednesday through Sunday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., with some evening exhibitions available on select days. The museum is closed on Mondays and Tuesdays. The general admission rates are:

  • Adults: $24.
  • Seniors: $21. 
  • Students with valid ID: $19.
  • Youth 6-17: $5.
  • Children 5 and under: Free. 
  • U.S. military personnel: Free. 

All purchases of on-site tickets have an additional surcharge of $2.

Here at Crème de la Crème of Goodyear, we encourage your children to learn about culture and media, including art. We feel it’s never too early to foster a love of learning and promote your child’s natural curiosity. Trips to museums can be a wonderful supplement to the early childhood education we provide. Hopefully, this list gives you a starting point to explore the world of art, history, and science through local museums.