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MUSEUM

Why on earth do these 8 weird German museums exist?

Visited all of the usual tourist hot spots and now looking for something a little more niche? Take a look through our list of the quirkiest museums Germany has to offer.

Why on earth do these 8 weird German museums exist?
An exhibit at the Clown Museum, Leipzig. Photo: DPA

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1. Pig Museum, Stuttgart

The museum's 'biggest' piece of art on display. Photo: DPA.

The Schweine Museum in Stuttgart claims to be the largest pig museum in the world. Inside, you can feast your eyes on a porky 23 rooms worth of piggy paraphernalia.

The collection was originally started by a lady called Erika Wilhelmer and is today displayed in three stories of the old slaughterhouse in Stuttgart.

The main focus of the museum is the cooking, mythology and history of pigs. But you can even get married here! 

Once you’ve worked up an appetite taking in more swine than you will ever see again in your life, you can enjoy a pork-based meal in the restaurant-cafe.

Just one of the many pig figurines to be found at the Stuttgart museum. Photo: DPA

2. German Additive Museum, Hamburg

Photo: DPA

Do you really know what you’re eating?

Under the motto “additives belong in a museum, not in food,” this museum spreads information regarding the function, manufacturing, risks and side effects of the additives in our food.  

Dropping the bombshell that many additives do not have to be declared on food packaging, and that even organic foods are allowed to include additives, this museum will destroy any faith you had in your control over your food.

But can this undoubtedly interesting topic be stretched out into a whole museum?

3. Potato Museum, Munich

Photo: DPA

Claiming to be the only museum in the world dedicated to presenting the potato through the lens of art and art history, eight themed rooms take you through the life of the potato, from its employment as a currency to its multi-faceted food uses. 

The museum also hosts a collection of books from the Otto Eckart Foundation, which document the historical importance of the potato. 

4. Easter Egg Museum, Sonnenbühl, Baden-Württemberg

Photo: DPA

This unique find explores the historical intertwining of eggs with Easter, and of course displays Easter eggs of all shapes, designs and sizes, both natural and made from porcelain.

From the beautifully intricate and tasteful to displaying the brash logos of well-known brands, these eggs surely are a feast for the eyes. 

The collection was created by women from Sonnenbühl-Erpfingen in 1980, from which the museum was born in 1993. 

5. Lipstick Museum, Berlin

René Koch posing with some of his collection. Photo: DPA

Make-up artist René Koch opened this museum as a way to show off his private collection of lipsticks, as well as posters and cosmetic formulas from baroque times to the present. The museum also includes films from the post-war period to today.

Adding a touch of celebrity to the exhibit, you can also revel at the kiss marks of stars such as 1970s-80s Welsh singer Bonnie Tyler and German cabaret artist Ute Lemper. Plus visitors can pick up some expert tips on how best to apply their lipstick.

6. Clown Museum, Leipzig

Museum owner Hans-Dieter Hormann with three of his many figurines. Photo: DPA

Okay, so this one actually sounds pretty fascinating.

Clowns were expelled from the theatre of famous German director Caroline Neuber in Leipzig in 1737. In 2007, they retaliated, forming a clown association and a museum.  

In an attempt to support clowns, this museum provides a home to more than 3,000 clown figurines from around the world, 350 circus posters, film recordings, costumes, newspaper articles, clown marionettes, and indeed “many gifts from famous clowns”.  

7. Mustard Grinder Museum, Cologne

The mustard grinder in Cochem. Photo: DPA

Boasting to have the oldest mustard grinders in the world, this museum can actually be found in two locations, one being in Cologne and the other in the small town of Cochem in Rhineland-Palatinate.

Each museum has one grinder, both manufactured in 1810. And after restoration, they are still used to make mustard today under the motto “quality not quantity”.

If you are asking who on earth would create a museum around a single object, the clue might be in the shop which adjoins the museum, where you can buy rather pricey “historical mustard.”

8. German Bee Museum, Weimar

Photo: DPA

Do you know who Ferdinand Gerstung and August Ludwig were? That knowledge gap is about to be filled. The astute pair noticed the glaring need for a bee museum way back in 1910. 

Renovated in 2002, the museum exhibits everything you need to know about the biology of bees, the history of beekeeping, as well as present-day apiculture (for those of you who don’t know, that’s the fancy word for beekeeping).

CULTURE

Where to celebrate Diwali 2022 in Germany

The holiday of Diwali kicks off on Monday. Here's where you can celebrate all around Germany.

Where to celebrate Diwali 2022 in Germany

With over 100,000 Indians in Germany, and over 175,000 people of Indian descent, it’s little wonder that Diwali – the famous five day Hindi festival of lights starting this year on Monday October 24th – is being celebrated all around the Bundesrepublik

READ ALSO: Indians in Germany: Who are they and where do they live?

Even the House of Parliament in Frankfurt is honouring the holiday for the first time with a special reception on October 30th.

Diwali takes its name from the clay lamps or deepa (the event is sometimes called Deepawali) that many Indians light outside their home. With the days shortening in Germany, there’s all the more reason to celebrate light — especially over lively music, traditional dance and authentically spicy Indian cuisine.

We have rounded up some of the top events to celebrate around Germany, both the week of Diwali and afterwards, stretching into mid-November. If you have an additional event to suggest, email us at [email protected]

October 24th in Heidelberg

Happen to be in Heidelberg? Then it’s not too late to head to the Sweet Home Project, which will be cooking up a storm starting at 6:30pm. The menu includes an assortment of Indian sweets and savoury dishes. The collective only asks that participants bring along a candle (and a hearty appetite).

If you miss this event, and are still craving some (really) spicy traditional cuisine, the Firebowl Heidelberg is hosting a Diwali party on October 29th, replete with lots of food and drink and Bollywood beats the whole night. 

October 29th near Frankfurt

For those who fancy a Feier with a full-buffet, this celebration in Dreieich delivers through an all-you-can-eat dinner with traditional fare. Starting at 5pm and stretching into the early hours of the morning, the festive feast includes traditional Bollywood music by Derrick Linco. There’s also a dance party for kids, who receive free admission up to seven years old and €25 up to 14 years. Normal tickets go for €40 per person.

A previous Diwali celebration of traditional dance and music in Dresden. Photo: picture alliance / dpa | Sebastian Kahnert

November 4th near Düsseldorf

On November 4th at 6pm, the Deutsch-Indische Gesellschaft Düsseldorf will be hosting a family-friendly party in nearby Ratingen with classical Indian music and dance, a huge dinner and Bollywood music led by DJ SA-ONE. Tickets cost about €40 each, but children under six receive free entry. 

November 5th in Bonn 

The Indian Students Association of Bonn-Cologne will be hosting its biggest event of the year: for €10, event goers can try an array of Indian food, play classic games and tune into cultural performances. 

READ ALSO: Moving from India to Munich changed my life

November 12th in Essen 

Whether you like traditional bhajans or meditative ragas, this concert will capture many of the classic sounds of Indian music with artists such as Anubhab Tabla Ensemble, Debasish Bhattacharjee and Somnath Karmorak taking center stage. The performance starts at 5pm and costs €10. 

November 12th and 13th in Berlin

Indian food fans will get to enjoy 12 stands devoted to Indian cuisine and products, all coming from the local Indian community. The weekend-long festival will also include stand-up comedy from the Desi Vibes Comedy Group. Karaoke fans will also enjoy singing along with the Sounds of India group, followed by an after party on Saturday. All this only costs €2 at the door. 

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