This is a multipart blog about the things to do in Staten Island. In this part, we look at visiting the Jacques Marchais Museum of Tibetan Art during the summertime.

The Jacques Marchais Museum of Tibetan Art is located at the top of Lighthouse Hill (Lighthouse Avenue) in Staten Island. The surroundings make this an ideal place to visit during the summertime and because of its uniqueness, visiting the museum is one of the top things to do in Staten Island.

Garden Outside of The Jacques Marchais Museum

Garden Outside of The Jacques Marchais Museum

The museum has a spectacular collection of Tibetan art that can be appreciated by anyone (you don’t have to be an enthusiast of Tibetan art to appreciate the craftsmanship that has gone into the pieces of display). In one of the future installments on this blog, I will show some examples of the art on display in the museum and explain the significance of the art. However, in the installment, I want to focus on the museum’s surroundings and the time of the year.

The summertime is a very special time of the year at the Jacques Marchais Museum. The museum sits on top of a hill with pathways that are lined with flowers. At this time of year, most of the flowers have either bloomed or are starting to bloom.

The picture at right shows the rear area of the museum’s property. There is a sitting area right in front of a Buddha statue. Here you will find some beautiful flowers amidst a very serene place where you can sit. Feel free to bring a picnic lunch and enjoy it here. You will find this area quite peaceful and calming.

Lotus Flower

A Lotus Flower in the Pond Below the Museum

One of the most unique things to see on the museum’s property is a pond. This pond has lotus flowers that appear only in the summertime and are in bloom right now. Here is an image of one of several lotuses that you can see when you visit the museum.

The lotus has a special significance. It is native to tropical Asia, Australia, India and Vietnam. In Asia, parts of the plant are considered a delicacy and are sliced and used in different dishes. The lotus has also been used for centuries by Asian cultures because of its healing abilities for people suffering from bronchial illnesses including Asthma and Bronchitis.

While you stare in appreciation at the lotus flowers that are in bloom, you will hear something very interesting. The pond is the home to several frogs that make very unique sounds. I have figured out if they are trying to talk to each other or talk to people. If you’re lucky enough, you may be there at a time when the frogs decide to serenade you.

Rumor has it that there was once an alligator living in the fish pond at the museum. Truth be told, the picture below shows an alligator statue that once sat in the fish pond. It’s possible it may still be there among the lotus flowers and lily pads.

Alligator in Jacques Marchais Museum Fish Pond

Alligator in Jacques Marchais Museum Fish Pond, Photo from the Museum’s Archive

Visiting the Jacques Marchais Museum of Tibetan Art is only one of many things to do in Staten Island. If you live in Staten Island, you’ve probably heard about the museum but never made the trip. This is a wonderful time of year to finally visit us. And if you live outside of Staten Island, there’s plenty to do on Staten Island that will leave you with memories that will last for many years.