It is raining museums on my blog this month and even though we just finished International Museum Day on 18-May, I thought a post about some unusual and quirky museums in Switzerland would be a great idea as museums are something I really enjoy visiting and writing about. So, here is a list of some rare and interesting museums of Switzerland.
The Swiss National Museum (Landesmuseum), Zurich: is one of the most popular museums of Switzerland. Located in the centre of Zurich city, this one gives visitors an insight into the history, evolution and culture of Switzerland starting from the prehistoric ages through the ancient times, middle ages, the 20th century and beyond. From paintings to sculptures to gothic art, the displays are engaging and form for a perfect half a day visit.
The Tram museum, Zurich: located currently at the tram depot at Burgwies, the Zurich Tram museum was founded way back in 1967. With close to 20 preserved tram cars dating between 1897 to 1960, the museum is a treasure house of not only original vehicles but also equipment like ticket punching machines and memorabilia like tickets, driver uniforms, ticket pouches, tools, sign boards, timetables etc.
The clock and watch museum (Uhrenmuseum), Winterthur: is a must visit if you are a fan of clocks and watches. It is literally a journey through six centuries! The collection boasts of watches from the 15th century right from wall clocks to pocket watches, jewellery watches and the like. The collection is divided into two parts: the Konrad Kellenberger Clock and Watch Collection and the Oscar Schwank Watch Collection.
Olympic museum, Lausanne: Founded in 1993 on the banks of the enchanting Lake Geneva, the Olympic museum is located in the Ouchy district of Lausanne and traces the history, evolution and development of the Olympic games. It is a haven for all sports lovers with over 1500 artefacts and a host of interactive displays including movies, games and activities for adults and children alike. The information boards, photographs and memorabilia manage to take visitors on an immersive journey that transcends sports.
Pegasus Small World (Spielzeugmuseum), Aeugstertal: this one is located on the outskirts of Zurich and is a treasure house of thousands of dolls, teddy bears, stuffed toys and models of cars and trains. Established in 1962, this family owned museum is a perfect family outing and houses an impressive collection of miniatures.
Textile Museum, St. Gallen: founded way back in 1878, this one is an important landmark in St Gallen and houses one of the most important textile collections of the country. St Gallen was known for its flourishing textile industry and was known as the Textile city. The museum today serves as an inspiration for designers and creators and houses historical embriodery, a textile library, yesteryear machines, textile samples and the like.
Soap Museum (Seifenmuseum), St. Gallen: this one is indeed a quirky museum located in Grossackerstrasse in the textile town of St Gallen. It has a massive collection of soaps from decades and delves into the history and evolution of soaps. The museum also conducts workshops on making your own soap and explores the design of the washing machine over time.
Swiss Woodcarving Museum, Brienz: wood crafting is a traditional art that is native to Switzerland and this museum features wood carvings collected over centuries. It is in fact the only museum in the country dedicated to wood carving and hosts several intricately carved bears, houses and artefacts all crafted from wood. Do not miss the little wooden toys that you can carry back as souvenirs.
Teddy Bear Museum, Baden this one is located in the picturesque town of Baden which is also known for its thermal baths. Situated within a quaint house in Upper Halde and spread over three floor, the museum is the brain child of teddy bear mum Maria Kaufmann who is passionate about collecting teddy bears. The museum has over 1000 bears arranged according to different themes and is a treat for children and adults alike.
History (Historisches) Museum, Baden: located in a medievial castle, this interesting museum traces the history of Baden city and its surrounding region. A business hub in the yesteryears, Baden was always known as a place of exchange. It was also famous for its thermal baths which were known to have healing powers and the city soon transformed into a resort town attracting tourists galore. The museum which offers panoramic views of this beuatiful city, traces the history of these baths and how it was used for treatment in the twentieth century.