The world is full of strange stuff; why not visit a weird museum that celebrates the peculiar? The interesting and unusual? Whether you are a museum-goer or not, you are sure to find at least one weird museum from our list.
So, read on fifteen weird museums around the world that will pique your interest to visit:
1. The Paris Sewers Museum, France
Since the beginning of the 13th century, Paris has been draining its wastewater underground to its sandstone tunnels. Back in the day, these same tunnels were used to carry tourist from one area of Paris to another. Quite a smelly ride! Located beneath the Left Bank, it’s a must-see for any fan of public works, or fans of the musical it inspired, Les Misérables.
2. The Museum of Witchcraft, Cornwall, England
This weird museum is located in the village of Boscastle and has the world’s oldest collection of items about witchcraft, magic and the occult. It has over 3,000 objects spanning 25 permanent displays on two floors and has an exhibition space that changes yearly.
3. The Kunstkamera, Russia
Touted as the first museum in Russia, it houses some 200,000 human and other natural oddities once owned by Peter the Great. Meander the halls and witness several deformed fetuses, specimens with extra limbs and heads, and a decapitated head preserved in vinegar. This weird museum not for the faint of heart!
4. The World’s Largest Matchbox Museum, Portugal
One man’s crazy quest to gather up the most matchboxes one human can own has resulted in its museum. His name is Aquiles da Mota Lima, a world-traveling businessman from Tomar who began collecting them from his many travels in 1953. The entire collection is from 127 countries, with over three million matchsticks.
5. Museum of Death, Los Angeles
From the name, you can feel the amount of weirdness from this museum. You need a strong stomach to visit this museum. Explicit, hand-written letters and artwork from serial killers, gruesome video footage (some of it quite clinical) and loads of displays pertaining to all things death. Be sure to go before you’ve eaten your lunch! There’s another one in New Orleans as well.
6. Momofuku Ando Instant Ramen Museum, Japan
Broke college students and bachelors rejoice! This is the culinary museum you’ve been waiting for. Momofuku Ando, the creator of the instant ramen noodle, is honored here. He invented the carb-filled sustenance for the impoverished survivors of World War II. Along with the many displays, you can cook your own ramen concoction in the museum’s kitchen, where hot water is provided.
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7. Museum of Enduring Beauty, Malaysia
This weird museum dedicated to the extreme lengths some cultures will go to make themselves ‘beautiful.’ This place proves that beauty is truly in the eye of the beholder. With records dating back to the beginning of human history, people have molded their own heads, bound their feet, and extended their necks – all in the name of looking attractive.
8. International Museum of Toilets, New Delhi, India
As Gandhi said, “Sanitation is more important than independence.” Here you can explore the history of hygiene and sanitation. Showcasing some of the unique toilets in the world, it chronicles the history of toilets and their evolution.
9. Icelandic Phallological Museum, Iceland
Yes, there is a weird museum dedicated entirely to the male organ. Interestingly enough, there is the little emphasis and the human penis, and there is no pornography here. Instead, you will find specimens ranging from a sperm whale penis (1.7 meters) all the way down to a hamster penis at two millimeters! Along with the displays is educational information of a somewhat technical kind of all things phallic.
10. The Dog Collar Museum, England
Housed inside a rather medieval-looking castle in Leeds is the one and only dog collar museum in the world. The last owner of the castle estate, Lady Baillie, loved her dogs. This weird museum was created in honor of her penchant for pooches. There are more than 100 unique doggie items that date back to medieval times.
11. Museum of Bad Art (MOBA), Boston, MA, USA
This is ‘art too bad to be ignored.’ Located in the basement of a community theater outside of Boston, this museum collects the bad, the ugly and the downright ludicrous. However, to the untrained eye, some of these works could be considered okay? You will have to come here and see for yourself. As they say, it’s so bad, it good.
12. The Pharmacy Museum, New Orleans, LA, USA
Located in the French Quarter, items are dating back centuries to the very beginning of the pharmacy trade. This is another museum not for the faint of heart – there are many shocking things pharmacists used to impose on their patients to ‘fix their ailments.’ Voodoo potions, bloodletting, and crude surgical instruments are the norms.
13. International UFO Museum, Roswell, NM, USA
The famous 1947 incident in Roswell is still the subject of hot debate today. What is a weather balloon? What is an actual UFO? This weird museum attempts to answer this question and many more. Facts on Area 51 and legendary crop circles are just a tidbit of what you’ll find. The research center has many documents on alien sighting around the world.
14. International Cryptozoology Museum, Portland, ME, USA
A museum dedicated to the study of unverified animals. Think the Loch Ness Monster or the Yeti. Mystical creatures that have been enhanced and made elusive by sheer legend. Relics here include P.T. Barnum’s Feejee Mermaid and a life-size coelacanth. A museum runs more by imagination than anything else.
15. Museum of Medieval Torture Instruments, Amsterdam, The Netherlands
This is quite a comprehensive array of European torture methods and devises. The illustrations and descriptions of some very creative punishments almost outweigh the actual devices on display. Historical background information is available in eight languages.
This is just scraping the tip of the iceberg when it comes to strange and interesting museums to be found around the world. But these are among the best. Visiting these weird museum will make your trip a more luxurious experience, and you will learn a thing or two!