What started as a place to keep a personal art collection has grown into one of the largest collections of Native American art and historical artifacts in North America. Founded in 1929 by Maie Bartlett and Dwight B. Heard, the Heard Museum now spans more than 130,000 square feet, including dedicated classroom and performance areas. Choose hotels near the Heard Museum in Phoenix and don’t miss this intriguing attraction.
Popular Heard Museum Exhibits
Attracting approximately a quarter of a million visitors each year, the museum is home to more than 40,000 items. Many of these items are archival records and books stored in the library chronicling the history and culture of many of North America’s Southwest region native tribes.
Home: Native Peoples in the Southwest features a variety of exhibits and artifacts that tell the story of native life both past and present. Popular items include the full-sized Navajo hogan, Pueblo oven, Hopi piki room, and Yaqui ramada. From modern art to authentic Native American jewelry and beadwork, the display includes nearly 2,000 artifacts to admire and enjoy.
One of the most popular, and touching, exhibits is the historical presentations in the interactive e-room. Here, video, radio broadcasts, interviews, photographs, and more combine to tell the stories and struggles of Southwest Native American tribes. From the era of boarding schools to the modern struggle to maintain a balance of ancient and modern traditions, the showcase offers an unforgettable look into the lives of the tribes on display.
Other exhibits include the 260-piece Mareen Allen Nichols Collection of Native jewelry, nearly 450 Hopi kachina dolls from the Barry Goldwater Collection, and a landscaped outdoor garden featuring plants and trees native to Phoenix and the greater Southwest.
Getting to Heard Museum
The easiest way to reach the museum is through the public METRO light rail system or local bus system. The Encanto/Central Avenue Station leaves you steps from the door of the museum. If you’re staying in one of the many hotels near the Heard Museum in Phoenix, the museum is easy to find on Central Avenue, just North of Interstate 10. The museum is less than 10 minutes from Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport for easy access via taxi or shuttle service as well.
Other Attractions near Heard Museum in Phoenix
The central location of the Heard Museum places it near a variety of other attractions to help fill your travel itinerary. Whether you’re planning a family getaway or a pampering resort retreat, there is something for everyone to enjoy.
Kids will enjoy the learning opportunities and hands-on exhibits of the Children’s Museum of Phoenix and Arizona Science Center. If the family is looking for a fun way to escape Arizona’s infamous summer heat, the Enchanted Island Amusement Park is only a couple of blocks east. Its pedal boats and splash pad will keep the kids happy while live music and midway games offer fun for adults as well.
For a greater look at the history of the City of Phoenix, Heritage Square, the Arizona Capitol Museum and the Wrigley Mansion are all a short drive from hotels near the Heard Museum in Phoenix.