There are several Maharashtra museums that form a part of the state's art and Culture. There are as many as thirteen to fourteen museums which has a huge collection of items of art, craft and antique pieces. Some of them are under the supervision of Maharashtra Government while others are run privately.
These museums showcase history, culture and art of the state. They are the storehouses of several different types of coins, images, sculptures and tribal items. Not only this, paintings dating back to several thousand years are also under the possession of Maharashtra museums. Miniature paintings of Mughal period, European paintings, and exotic antique pieces from hilly areas of Neal and Tibet are some of such artworks that are on display.
The rulers of the princely states of Maharashtra were well aware of the importance of the artistic heritage that needed to be preserved and protected from destruction over time. These rulers themselves were the connoisseurs of art and learned the art of museum building after getting inspired from their European contemporaries.
An important feature of Maharashtra museums is the preservation of manuscripts and written inscriptions that are several centuries old. An important aspect of these galleries of art that makes them distinguished from others is that they have art-works belonging to different civilizations and periods of history. There are sculptures from Mathura and Gandhara art, craft works from Buddhist and Jain Religions, and lavish architectural works belonging to Gupta Period.
Besides this there are some archeological and science museums that preserve specimen of different species of plants and animals. Some of them also showcase evolution of mankind and its multicultural aspects. Museums of Prince of Wales, Jehangir Nicholson, and Raja Dinker are among the popular Maharashtra museums. Chhatrapati Museum, Tribal Museum, Taraporewala Museum are also famous among tourists.