AloneThis may sound weird, but my favorite way to explore a new museum is to go alone, in the middle of a weekday if possible. That way I get minimal crowds, and can devote all my attention to the displays.
A while back I visited the Tennessee State Museum that way; all alone, on a day where the only people in sight were in museum uniforms.
I loved it.
I could stand staring at the dioramas, take as long as I liked reading the text, or just be still and enjoy the displays.
There's a new display now...I really need to go back. This time I'll bring my sketchbook!