When you think of visiting a museum, you probably think of a serious and recognized institution such as one of these 25 Magnificent Museums You Have To Visit In Your Lifetime we showed you some time ago. However, not all museums are traditional. There are also many unusual museums out there, ranging from slightly weird to downright creepy. To find out what strange museums you must visit, check out today’s post with 25 World’s Strangest Museums.
Avanos Hair Museum, Avanos, Turkey
Located in a small cave underneath a pottery shop in the Turkish town of Avanos, the Avanos Hair Museum contains hair samples, names, and addresses from more than 16,000 women from all around the world. The origin of this bizarre museum dates back to some 35 years ago, when a friend of Chez Galip, the potter, had to leave the town and left Galip something to remember her by; she gave him a lock of her hair.
Museum of Bad Art, Somerville and South Weymouth, Massachusetts
The Museum Of Bad Art is a community-based, private institution dedicated to the collection, preservation, exhibition, and celebration of bad art in all its forms and in all its glory. Originally founded in 1993 in Dedham, MA, the museum now has two branches located in Somerville and South Weymouth, MA.
Icelandic Phallological Museum, Reykjavik, Iceland
Located in Iceland’s capital city of Reykjavik, the Icelandic Phallological Museum is the only museum in the world to contain a collection of phallic specimens belonging to all the various types of mammals found in a single country. The museum contains a collection of more than 215 male reproductive parts belonging to almost all the land and sea mammals that can be found in Iceland.
British Lawnmower Museum, Southport, UK
Found in the town of Southport, Northern England, the British Lawnmower Museum is one of the weirdest museums in England. The world’s only lawnmower museum, it houses over 200 restored exhibits with all their history, including lawnmowers belonging to some of UK’s most famous people such as Prince Charles and Princess Diana.
Cancun Underwater Museum, Cancun, Mexico
Located on the ocean floor at the Cancun National Marine Park in Cancun, Mexico, the Cancun Underwater Museum is one of the most unique museums in the world. To draw masses of tourists away from already damaged local coral reefs, almost 500 sculptures were installed to the sea floor. Made of ph-neutral clay, the sculptures also created an artificial reef where coral can grow and marine life can breed.
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Museum of Broken Relationships, Zagreb, Croatia
Located in the beautiful baroque Kulmer Palace in the historical Upper Town of Zagreb, Croatia, the Museum of Broken Relationships offers a unique emotional journey around the world through hundreds of break-ups. Dedicated to failed love relationships, it exhibits personal objects left over from former lovers.
Metamora Museum of Oddities, Metamora, Indiana
Situated some 80 km (50 mi) from Cincinnati in the tiny village of Metamora, Indiana, the Metamora Museum of Oddities is a 2-story museum featuring over 2,000 bizarre artifacts acquired over the years by “Indiana Joe,” the adventuring archaeologist. The exhibits include many unusual pieces of artwork, relics, and pieces of history from the area, as well as from around the world.
Sulabh International Museum of Toilets, Delhi, India
Ranked by the Time Magazine as one of the world’s weirdest museums, the Sulabh International Museum of Toilets features a rare collection of facts, pictures, and objects detailing the historic evolution of toilets from 2500 BC to date. It provides a chronological account of developments relating to technology, toilet related social customs, toilet etiquette, prevailing sanitary conditions, and legislative efforts of the times.
Momofuku Ando Instant Ramen Museum, Ikeda, Japan
Located in the Osaka Prefecture city of Ikeda, the birthplace of instant noodles, the Momofuku Ando Instant Ramen Museum is an interactive educational food museum where visitors learn about the importance of invention and discovery of ramen noodles through informative exhibits and fun hands-on workshops.
Paris Sewer Museum, Paris, France
Found in the sewers beneath the Quai d’Orsay on the Left Bank in Central Paris, the Paris Sewer Museum is a must-see attraction for any visitor interested in engineering, public works, or unusual tourist sites as well as for fans of Victor Hugo’s novel, Les Miserables, and the musical that it inspired. First organized tours of the sewers in Paris were offered as early as in 1889.
Torture Museum, Amsterdam, Netherlands
The capital city of the Netherlands boasts over 50 museums, but few of them are as bizarre and creepy as the Museum of Torture. Found in the very center of the city, the museum provides a vivid image of the painful European past. The international exhibition “Punishments and Verdicts in the Middle Ages” includes over 40 instruments of punishment from different parts of Europe, from the inquisition chair to the guillotine.
Museum of Vampires, Paris, France
Another spooky museum that the faint-hearted should avoid, the Museum of Vampires in Paris was founded by Jacques Sirgent, an eccentric but highly knowledgeable scholar and specialist of the macabre. This creepy museum is a visual representation of his dedicated research on vampirism. The museum houses a number of interesting items including an authentic 19th century anti-vampire protection kit, mummified cat, and various anti-vampire weapons.
Dog Collar Museum, Kent, UK
To find out what medieval dog collars looked like, visit the Dog Collar Museum at the Leeds Castle in Kent, England. Built in the 12th century, the building was passed to the British royal family in 1278. In 1979, the Dog Collar Museum was established there with a stunning collection of more than 100 collars and various related exhibits that span 500 years.
Museum of the Mummies, Guanajuato, Mexico
One of the scariest museums in the world, the Museum of the Mummies in Guanajuato consists of a number of naturally mummified bodies interred during a cholera outbreak around the city in 1833. The natural mummification of the dead bodies was probably caused by the hot and dry climate of Guanajuato. The macabre site was turned into a museum in 1969, and it currently exhibits more than 100 mummies.
Glore Psychiatric Museum, St. Joseph, Missouri
Considered one of the most unusual museums in the US, the Glore Psychiatric Museum chronicles the 130-year history of the St. Joseph hospital and centuries of mental health treatment. Located on the grounds of the original hospital, the museum exhibits include surgical tools, treatment equipment, furnishings, nurse uniforms, personal notes as well as fascinating artwork from hospital patients etc.
Museum of Menstruation, New Carrollton, Maryland
One of weirdest museums on the list, the Museum of Menstruation also has a very weird location. It is situated in a basement of its founder and curator Harry Finley, who lives in the above home in New Carrollton, Maryland. Since 1995, Finley has devoted his life to making his private collection of feminine hygiene products and altered mannequins available to the public.
Museum of Enduring Beauty, Malacca City, Malaysia
Receiving just about 2,000 visitors monthly, the Museum of Enduring Beauty in Malacca City might not be among the world’s most visited museums, but it definitely is one of the most unusual. It exhibits different standards of beauty since ancient to modern times. Examples include very painful body modifications such as tooth-filing, piercing, scarification, head molding, and lip stretching.
International Cryptozoology Museum, Portland, Maine
Cryptozoology is the study of hidden animals and involves the search for animals whose existence has not been verified, like the Bigfoot. The museum offers a wide range of exhibitions from rare, scientific, and zoological specimens to acknowledgements of the sightings and folk traditions to be found within cryptozoology.
Meguro Parasitological Museum, Tokyo, Japan
Established in 1953, the Meguro Parasitological Museum is where you can learn everything you have ever wanted to know about tapeworms, head lice, and plenty of other parasites you have probably never heard of. The impressive collection boasts over 300 specimens, including a giant 9-m (29-ft) long tapeworm.
Mutter Museum, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
A part of the College of Physicians of Philadelphia, the Mutter Museum displays preserved collections of medical oddities, anatomical specimens, models, and medical instruments in a 19th-century “cabinet museum” setting. The museum’s stand-out items include the jaw tumor of President Grover Cleveland, Albert Einstein’s brain, and Dr. Joseph Hyrtl’s human skull collection.
Condom Museum, Nonthaburi, Thailand
Considering that Thailand is one of the world’s largest condom producers, it should not be surprising that this Asian country has a museum dedicated to this contraceptive device. Located outside of Bangkok in the town of Nonthaburi, the Condom Museum was found with the intention to eliminate Thai people’s negative point of view on condom usage, create awareness of sexual protection, and boost their confidence in using condoms.
Bunny Museum, Altadena, California
In 1993, Candace Frazee and Steve Lubanski established what is now arguably the largest bunny-themed museum in the world. What originally started with just a simple Valentine’s Day gift, a plush bunny, it is now a gigantic collection of more than 34,000 bunny items. In 2017, the Bunny Museum moved from Pasadena, CA, to Altadena, CA.
Kansas Barbed Wire Museum, La Crosse, Kansas
Established in 1970 in a small storefront on the Main Street in downtown La Crosse, Kansas, the Kansas Barbed Wire Museum is devoted solely to the history and legend of barbed wire. The museum exhibits over 2,400 barbed wire varieties; including traditional samples manufactured between the years 1870 and 1890. Needless to say, touching the displays is not recommended.
Beijing Museum of Tap Water, Beijing, China
Situated in the Qingshui Yuan Apartment Complex in Beijing (at the original place of the first water plant in the city), the Beijing Museum of Tap Water educates visitors about China’s 90-year water treatment history using old relics, equipment, pictures, maps, and detailed captions. However, the place is not English-friendly, with English captions only appearing on some of the equipment displayed outside the museum building.
Museum of Food Anomalies
The only museum on the list that you can visit without leaving your home (because it only exists on the internet), the Museum of Food Anomalies is an online art project of Los Angeles-based graphic designer Michael Hanttula that “exposes horrific aberrations of nature with photographs depicting common food items that have distorted into something more sinister than words can describe.”
25. © Nevit Dilmen, Hair museum in Avanos Cappadochia 8652, CC BY-SA 3.0, 24. wikimedia commons (public domain), 23. ThomasWF, Icelandic Phallological Museum, Reykjavík, CC BY-SA 3.0, 22. Rept0n1x, British Lawnmower Museum, Southport, CC BY-SA 2.0, 21. 2il org via flickr, CC BY 2.0, 20. Prosopee, Zagreb ‘s Museum of Broken Relationships entrance interior, CC BY-SA 3.0, 19. (Actual museum not pictured) Jerry via flickr, CC BY 2.0, 18. Ajay Tallam, Sulabh ecosan toilet, CC BY-SA 2.0, 17. chee . hong, Momofuku Ando Instant Ramen Museum, CC BY 2.0, 16. ignis, Musee des Egouts de Paris FRA 005, CC BY-SA 3.0, 15. Geneticcuckoo, Torture Museum, Amsterdam, CC BY-SA 3.0, 14. U.S. Air Force photo illustration by Airman 1st Class Gustavo Castillo/Released, 13. Basher Eyre, The Dog Collar Museum at Leeds Castle – geograph.org.uk – 1555444, CC BY-SA 2.0, 12. Russ Bowling, Las Momias, Guanajuato, CC BY 2.0, 11. David Becker, Glore Psychiatric Museum -Bath of Surprise, CC BY 2.0, 10. wikimedia commons (public domain), 9. MauritsV, Murzi2, CC BY-SA 2.0, 8. nps.gov (public domain: photo by government agency), 7. Guilhem Vellut via flickr, CC BY 2.0, 6. cezzie901 via flickr, CC BY 2.0, 5. ClaudiaM1FLERéunion, Condoms display condoms museum, CC BY-SA 3.0, 4. Jon Åslund, Liseberg bunnies, CC BY 2.0, 3-2. pixabay (public domain), 1 – Peter M via flickr, CC BY-SA 2.0