9 Offbeat Museums to Explore in Switzerland

Swiss watchmaker

Sure, Switzerland has its fair share of art and history museums.

But, it also has some unique and offbeat museums that will surprise, delight and entertain you and the kids for hours!

From open-air exhibits to avant-garde art galleries, Switzerland boasts a wealth of unique museum experiences waiting to be discovered.

1. Ballenberg Open-Air Museum, Hofstetten

Ballenberg Open-Air Museum

Step back in time at Ballenberg Open-Air Museum, where over 100 historic buildings from across Switzerland bring the country’s heritage to life. Wander through traditional villages and interact with artisans to experience Swiss culture firsthand.

2. Museum of Transport, Lucerne

swiss museum transport luzern
Swiss Museum Transport

Explore the evolution of transportation at Lucerne’s Museum of Transport. From vintage cars to modern aircraft, interactive exhibits make this museum a captivating experience for visitors of all ages.

I have spent hours here with my godson. In fact, I had to drag him away at the end of the day!

It is full of an insane number of actual trains, planes and automobiles. And fun interactive exhibits too.

3. International Clock-Making Museum, La Chaux-de-Fonds

La Chaux-de-Fonds Watch Making

This exceptional clock museum walks you throught the tale of time using an huge array of 4000 remarkable timepieces.

Among them are sundials, atomic clocks, exquisite watches, and clocks, alongside displays showcasing the artistry of jewelers and goldsmiths. On top of that, the museum features scientific and technical exhibits, offering a comprehensive exploration of time’s fascinating journey.

4. The Olympic Museum, Lausanne

The Olympic Museum

The Olympic Museum in Lausanne is a unique museum located at the home of the IOC. Interactive exhibits and memorabilia celebrate the spirit of athleticism and the history of this global sporting event.

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5. HR Giger Museum, Gruyères

HR Giger Museum

The surreal HR Giger Museum is a jaw-dropping testament showcasing the haunting works of artist H.R. Giger. He is the warped mind behind the “Alien” in the movie franchise and you can certainly see it in his museum and nearby bar (shown above).

The museum is also a great way to explore the historic town of Gruyeres, home to the namesake cheese, and nearby Cailler Chocolate Museum.

6. FIFA World Football Museum, Zurich

FIFA World Football Museum

Dive into the world’s most popular sport at the FIFA World Football Museum in Zurich. Discover the passion and history of the beautiful game through interactive exhibits and iconic memorabilia.

And if you want extra “fan points” you can head up to the Zurich Zoo and stroll past the FIFA Headquarters, although entry is almost impossible :>

7. International Red Cross and Red Crescent Museum, Geneva

International Red Cross and Red Crescent Museum

Gain insight into humanitarian efforts at the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Museum. Explore the organization’s mission to alleviate suffering and promote peace through thought-provoking exhibits.

8. Museum Tinguely, Basel

Museum Tinguely

Enter the whimsical world of Jean Tinguely at the Museum Tinguely in Basel. Kinetic sculptures and avant-garde installations showcase the artist’s playful approach to art and technology.

You can also see his outdoor “museum” of sorts in the side streets of Basel, as well as a number of his other works in various locations around Switzerland.

9. Swiss National Museum, Zurich

Swiss National Museum
Swiss National Museum

Journey through Swiss history at the Swiss National Museum in Zurich. This is a museum with an insanely wide arrange of items on display – from ancient artifacts to modern masterpieces, explore the cultural heritage of Switzerland through a diverse collection of artworks and artifacts.

And it is a stunning building itself, just opposite the main station in Zurich and right on the Limmat River.

Written by Ashley Faulkes
As a twenty-year resident of Switzerland, I am passionate about exploring every nook and cranny of this beautiful country, I spend my days deep in the great Swiss outdoors, and love to share these experiences and insights with fellow travel enthusiasts.

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