Wednesday, 17 July 2013

The Best Museums in Europe

Some of the world’s most famous museums are found in Europe. With collections that span centuries, world-class museums boast rich exhibits with historical documents, unique art and artefacts from the world’s many cultures. From Berlin to Paris to London, many of the best museums are found in Europe’s historic capital cities.

One of the world’s grandest and largest museums is the Louvre. It is here where you can gaze upon the Mona Lisa, the Venus de Milo and Winged Victory. These are just three of the priceless artefacts housed within a dazzling former royal palace, which stands on the site of a 12th century fortress. There are some 35,000 objects dating from prehistory to the 21st century exhibited at the Louvre, which attracts millions of visitors each year.

British Museum
The British Museum has one of the world’s most comprehensive collections. Popular exhibits include the Elgin Marbles from the Parthenon, the Rosetta Stone and mummies from Ancient Egypt. Founded in 1753, the vast collection features art and artefacts from around the world. Best of all, the British Museum is free. Regular special exhibitions, displays and events add to the experience by enriching visitors’ understanding of cultures from prehistory to today.

Berlin has a prolific collection of museums. With over 150 museums, the German capital has some of Europe’s best collections. Recognised as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, Museum Island (Museumsinsel) is home to five state museums with collections that range from classical antiquities to contemporary art. Visitors can explore the Egyptian and antique collections at the Altes Museum and prehistoric, Neanderthal, Egyptian and Ancient Greek collections at the Neues Museum. Other museums include the Alte Nationalgalerie and the Bode Museum with sculpture collections and late Antique and Byzantine art, while the Pergamon Museum showcases reconstructed historical buildings.

Museo del Prado
Madrid’s Prado Museum exhibits some of Spain’s most renowned and beloved masterpieces. Thought-provoking and inspiring, the museum’s collection has grown into one of the world’s best since opening in 1819. Historical documents and artistic works from the 12th to early 19th centuries can be found within the sprawling museum, including stunning artwork by Francisco de Goya, Diego Velazquez, Titian, Peter Paul Rubens and Hieronymus Bosch.

Vatican Museums
Although getting into the popular Vatican Museums can be a challenge, the wait is well worth the patience. Among the masterpieces found here is the dazzling Sistine Chapel decorated by Michelangelo. Founded in the early 16h century, the museum also includes Raphael’s Stanze della Segnatura. The museum’s also features a vast collection classical sculptures and some of the most important Renaissance art found in Europe, as well as modern religious art.

Galleria degli Uffizi
Florence was where the Italian Renaissance flourished. As a result, the city is home to several exciting museums and art galleries. The Uffizi houses one of the most important Renaissance collections found anywhere in the world. Works by Michelangelo, Raphael, Caravaggio, Giotto, Sandro Botticelli, Titian, Leonardo da Vinci and many others are all found is this stunning 16th century building in the heart of the city.
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