10 of the Strangest Museums in the World
What does your local museum show? The typical antique jars and weapons of centuries past? Perhaps you have a museum that houses vehicles, clothing, and other treasures considered to have historical significance. These places are educational and big hits among young and old alike. But then there are museums that are not focused on general scientific, historical, or artistic values. The following are great examples. These are places with collections so specific and strange that skipping them when you’re in town will be something you will regret. List them down and include them in your next holiday!
1. The Icelandic Phallological Museum (Iceland)
Phallological…what a nice big word for something that will illicit snickers even from the most mature or sophisticated. If you ever find yourself in Husavik, Iceland, you should drop by this museum. This museum is your ticket to a world where nothing else exists but penises. Once you enter, you will be met by 272 specimens from 92 species of animals. The specimens are preserved in different ways and there are even exhibitions of penis-themed art. For a bit of fantasy, you can also check out specimens of creatures from folklore. Yes, this museum is the only way for you to see what a troll penis may look like.
2. The Torture Museum (Amsterdam, Netherlands)
As if we need more reminders on how cruel human beings can be. But if you find yourself in Amsterdam and you have time to kill (pun intended), The Tortue Museum is one educational way to do it. This is located at the Munt Square by the Singel canal. The whole place is small and badly lit in many areas. These aspects, of course, add to the “authenticity” of the museum. There is nothing like viewing a rusty guillotine almost engulfed in shadows to send shivers down your spine. Not that the whole place is creepy. In fact, you may find the whole tour oddly comedic.
3. The Sulabh International Museum of Toilets (New Delhi, India)
Of course, there is a museum of toilets! If there is a museum for smaller and less significant things, a museum for toilets is not that far-fetched. But as far as museums go, this place in New Delhi is surely one of the strangest. You might think that the location is strange for such a museum but its founder, Dr. Bindeshwar, has visions about spreading the good word of sanitation. This is a good place to start if you want to know about the evolution of toilets and how their design and materials changed through the years. From gilded in gold to pieces from the modern world, this is a museum one is not bound to forget for a long time
4. Paris Sewers Museum (Paris, France)
When you visit Paris for the first time, you make sure that you drop by the Louvre. Perhaps you also find time to visit the high-end shops and the little cafes that are just too picture perfect. If you are the adventurous kind, you may want to do the Sewers Museum tour. Why? Who knows why! You fancied a strange stop in your Paris tour and this is what you’re going to get. This place is located in the sewers beneath Quai d’Orsay. It houses mannequins as sewer workers in full gear. You will also get to know sewer-cleaning equipment that were used in the past and today. Yes, there is a gift shop.
5. Dog Collar Museum (Kent, England)
Housed in Leeds Castle, this weird museum actually delights half a million visitors every year. There are only nearly a hundred dog collars on display but they represent designs that span five centuries. The oldest of the collars date from the 15th and 16th centuries. On display from this era are mostly dog collars that protected dogs from wolves, wild boars, and bears. The most popular, though, are the elaborately designed collars from the 17th and 18th centuries. From this era, the collars on display are made of metal and velvet, with German and Austrian baroque designs.
6. Museum of Funeral Carriages (Barcelona, Spain)
This is a free museum located in the basement of the office building of Barcelona’s Municipal Funeral Services. It has a collection of funeral carriages and hearses. This collection is said to be one of the best in the world. Most of the exhibits are from the 19th and 20th century, giving you a glimpse at magnificently constructed hearses and carriages. There are life-sized horses and drivers as well but the whole place does not have that creepy atmosphere. Perhaps one would be too busy admiring the details of the vehicles inside the museum to feel strange.
7. The Hash, Marijuana, and Hemp Museum (Amsterdam, Netherlands)
Amsterdam sure has a collection of weird museums. This particular place will be a delight to those who are pushing for the legalization of marijuana. This place is not just a haven for these people but for everyone interested in the history of hemp and cannabis use. Inside this museum, one will be able to observe how dozens of varieties of marijuana are cultivated. If inspiration hits, you can drop by the shop next door. It sells everything you need to smoke (and grow) marijuana.
8. Shin-Yokohama Ramen Museum (Yokohama, Japan)
A museum dedicated to food should always be a top priority when you visit a place. When you find yourself in Yokohama, drop by the Ramen Museum and fill your brain with all the ramen information you can handle. Don’t worry, a trip to this museum will also be a culinary delight since there are cooking utensils and ramen packages that you can buy. On top of the ramen goodness that you can experience, you will also love the interior of this museum. It features a recreation of Tokyo in 1958. This was the year that instant noodles were invented.
9. Currywurst Museum (Berlin, Germany)
This is another food amusement park that is dedicated to the favorite dish of Berlin. For those who are not familiar with currywurst, it is simply bratwurst with curry sauce. And since around 800 million currywurst servings are consumed every year in Germany, it was only fitting that a museum for this dish was opened. This is a museum that will engage all senses; you can sniff secret spieces and eat currywurst in a cup during the tour. The dish is included in the admission price.
10. Meguro Parasitological Museum (Tokyo, Japan)
This museum wants you to “try to think about parasites without a feeling of fear, and take the time to learn about their wonderful world of the Parasites.” Many people will be inclined to say “No, thank you,” but if you are in the mood for a strange tour stop, this museum should be at the top of your holiday schedule. This places houses 45,000 specimens. Interestingly, the museum is a popular date spot in Tokyo.