Museums; the pillars of human civilization are often perceived as tad too boring. Our relationship with museums usually ends the moment we graduate from high school. To an ordinary person, museums bring to the mind the unlikely combination of antiquity and boredom. On the contrary, nestled time and again in human settlements museums are a perfect example of historical value, factual knowledge and delightful artwork. Museums serve as vast stores of knowledge, culture, tradition and history documented together. In this fast paced tech savvy world that prefers to rely on Google for every bit of information, the concept of museums has become old fashioned, but is still cherished and is here to stay. The dominance of museums till today is quite baffling but what actually captures the tourist’s imagination is the indomitable will of the curator and the large amount of research and dedication that goes into maintaining a marvel on whose pedestals the ‘past’ and the ‘present’ stand together. Museums promote exchange of culture, science and trade across borders and are thus regarded as the most significant institutions of any state. They are not only storehouses of knowledge but celebrate history in its truest sense. Museums preserve the weirdest things on Earth ranging from skeletons to clothes and garbage. Museums usually draw fewer visitors but here are the
10 most quirky museums across the world which never go empty…
10. Leeds Castle Dog Collar Museum
This unusual museum located in Leeds boasts of 100 historical collars for pups. It celebrates its association with dogs in innovative ways treasuring dog collars over centuries. Nowhere is exploration made more delightful than in this surreal museum where you can reinstate the love for your dog in your hearts. The idea is to turn museums into a visible institution that can compete with T.V., films and the internet. Quality is appreciated and so is quantity. Pet lovers, don’t miss it!
9. Circus World
This gigantic museum located in the heart of Wisconsin in the U.S. pays homage to the art of performance. It showcases the history of the circus world like no other museum. Its beautiful pillars keep the comic factor alive. Photographs and portraits of great comedians adorn the walls of this museum. It even possesses some old comic books. This world cannot do without circus. In fact, it is often said that the world is a circus. It is tragic that we have failed to acknowledge some of the great comedians of all times. This museum seems to be an attempt to make up for that failure. For comic lovers, this is the destination to congregate on any day!
8. Garbage Museum
The unparalleled Garbage Museum of Stafford, Connecticut will leave you flabbergasted. It beats all the museums in being unusual and unique to its core. You will find a huge compost pile and a recycling process intact. However, what never ceases to amaze the human eye is the huge dinosaur Trash-o-saurus made from trash. You surely do not want to miss this one. Right?
7. Sewer Museum
In the lines of the garbage museum, there is a sewer museum located in Paris. The Paris Sewer Museum infuses in you a strange, eerie feeling that reaches its peak once you get to know that over 200 years old sewers of Paris can be found here. There are huge lines of sewer spread in a vast area equivalent to a railway station. Parisian sewers even have street signs and addresses. Can you believe that? Believe it or not, this museum is certainly unbeatable. However, there is one tiny drawback. The stench is unbearable. Watch out!
6. Museum of Torture
Yes! There exists a museum of torture wherein agonizing methods of inflicting pain are documented and displayed. These methods date back to several centuries, all gathered collectively in one museum. I find myself gazing at the horrific instruments of torture over and over again. There is something subliminal about this place that makes you question accepted notions of time and timelessness. Torturing others has been an inherent part of human nature, and a museum dedicated proves to be an icing on the cake.
5. Museum of Bad Art
If you are one of those who believe that only good art is appreciated and applauded the world over, then you are truly mistaken. Bad art has found its place among millions of hearts due to its distinctness and distinguishing features. To add to your surprise, there is an entire museum dedicated to painfully abhorrent art in Massachusetts. It comprises of art forms that are bad, worse or even worst but stand unique in some sense of the word. These paintings do not promise to soothe your eyes but they will definitely please your mind. The paintings depict spotting a buffalo here or a deer there, espying a scene of grief and another of happiness, scenes of how our earliest ancestors fought, sang and played. Art is an expression of the artists mind. Be it good or bad, it is the soul behind the art piece that is revered.
4. UFO Museum and Research Center
Situated in Roswell, New Mexico this museum provides information in abundance on the other worldly phenomena. Hidden by dense, almost impenetrable myths lie a few real facts about UFOs which this museum efficiently displays. Though, still unexplored, other planets, galaxies and stars also find a keen mention in this museum. It comprises precariously balanced massive models of planets orbiting the sun. Science lovers! This one is for you.
3. International Spy Museum
Here is a marvel devoted to espionage in Washington D.C., the heart of America. It is quite coincidental that the country famous for espionage actually has a museum on its soil devoted to this mystic art or technique, as you may call it. This museum comes alive with a thousand stories, recognizable or unrecognizable. The stunning museum offers an insight into human nature and character. It thrives on the voluminous amount of mystery associated with it. Spying on others has now become a well paid profession for some. A much contested concept ‘spying’ actually helps one delve deep into a person’s character and at times exposes harsh realities. Therefore, a museum that pays homage to this act makes sense.
2. Sex Museum
This one is perhaps the quirkiest of the lot! Situated in Amsterdam, Netherlands it caters to an adult audience and is largely visited by people of all kinds. This museum not only dwells on the eroticism associated with sex but also cuts through the cultural and emotional aspect of sex. It celebrates history of sex in a one of its kind move. It condemns the notion of sex being a taboo and highlights its biological importance. Passion, zeal and love are the sheer emotions that will have a tight hold on you once you enter this museum. You will certainly enjoy it!
1. Museum of Toilets
Bindeshwar Pathak grew up to lead a movement we know as ‘Sulabh’. It caused a revolution in toilets. Today, he has a museum dedicated to his vision. Toilets of all shapes and design adorn this museum which celebrates the history of an integral part of our lives; toilets. In reality, the Sulabh International Complex on Palam Dabri road in New Delhi is a Disneyland of toilets. As a visitor, you will be taken on a whirlwind tour. As intriguing as it may sound, this museum also reminds us of things that we take for granted. There are numerous people who do not have access to toilets and defecate in the open even in the 21st century. Toilets are an essential part of our lives and actually denote our standard of living. People deprived of such basic facilities like toilets live in despondence and agony. A museum dedicated to toilets might sound hilarious but the ideology of the man behind it is incredible. Salute!