Museo del Mamut : The Mammoth Museum Review In Barcelona
I had the great pleasure of going to the Museo de Mamut in the gothic area of Barcelona this weekend. If you’re looking for a museum surrounding history that’s akin to say Cosmo Caixa with all it’s interactive pieces, this is one not to be missed.
Its a step above a lot of other history museums in Barcelona. Foremost, the guides shape a tour in your language. You turn up, they do it. Next, the guides are palaeontologists not hired lingual help who don’t know much more than the employee handbook. Most importantly, you get to TOUCH, FEEL, SMELL and interact with the exhibits. If you want to take photos, no problem.
The highlight is touching mammoth tusks, skulls, horns, teeth etc. from pre-historic animals. There’s mammoth leather hide which you can touch! My favourite was smelling an ancestor of a rhino’s horn. I could smell the animal itself. It was amazing!
You can ask questions and the guides will give you a response at your level of understanding. With my guide, she used the movie Ice Age to give examples to the kids. My GF asked a lot deeper questions and the responses were serious and informative. Great! Finally a guide [not a curator or director] that knows their stuff and you get to understand much more too!!!!!
There are so few museums anywhere with a level of attentiveness or going the extra mile like this mammoth museum does . To give an example, I didn’t go with a camera, as 99.9% of the time you can never use it. They had a camera on lend. This meant I could take some memories back with me! Name another museum that does this? There is amazing attention to the whole experience and going the extra mile. I was blown away! They’re going to email the photos and send info on what we asked for!
The mammoth museum is not HUGE. A tour takes roughly 25-35 minutes. You can wander around thereafter. I recommend you do. There’s a lot to read on large panels and no urgency to leave. You can do as many rounds as you want. I was in there around 1.5 hours. On the ceilings there’s cave drawings from around the world plus when you look around there’s hidden animals and lots of attention to detail that you would miss if you just went with the tour.
In addition, the site its on appears to have late medieval decor [note the pillars and wash basin and chimney]. So ask more questions 😀
I believe it’s one of the few museums with a prehistoric skeleton of a cave bear. It’s really spooky and scary! The mammoths looked like the good guys!
On the plus side, it’s a great learning experience. Information panels are in part in English. The heavy reading stuff is in Spanish. No translation guides were given, which I thought was a pity :-(. The price is expensive 7.50 EUR, but if you go with a library card and ID it’s 5 EUR, which I think is very reasonable!
If you want to get away from the usual things to do in Barcelona and touch history, I highly recommend this museum. I get the impression they’re going to add sabre tooth tigers to it, I guess watch this space!!!!
Museo del Mamut
Tel. 93 268 85 20
Fax. 93 163 51 27
Metro: L4 Jaume 1