Napier Museum

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Napier Museum


Considered as an architectural masterpiece, Napier Museum was established in 1855 and has been named after Lord Napier who was the governor of the then Madras (Chennai). The museum has been designed by a renowned architect Robert Chisholm and is a perfect blend of Indo-Gothic architecture that boasts of natural air conditioning.

Dating back to the 19th century, the Napier Museum is about 150 years old and houses some rare collections of bronze idols, ancient ornaments, and temple chariot and ivory carvings. The museum also boasts of a zoological garden that is spread over an area of 55 acres and was established in 1857.

The Napier Museum is also known as the Government Art Museum. The museum houses the Sree Chitra Art Gallery, which houses a rare collection of paintings by Raja Ravi Varma and Roerich and also features some fascinating works from the Mughal, Rajput and Tanjore schools of art. The art gallery also houses some oriental collections that comprise of paintings from China, Japan, Tibet and Bali thus offering a visual treat to the visitors.

Best time to visit

The best time to visit Napier Museum is in the cooler months between October and March. Humidity is low and it isn’t too hot.


Interestingly, the use of plastic is banned in the museum premises!


The Napier Museum is opened from 10:00 am to 4:45 pm on all weekdays except Wednesday when it is opened from 1:00 pm to 5:00 pm. The museum is closed on Monday, Republic Day, Independence Day, Onam and Mahanavami.

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