Ethnology Museum

Lisbon National Museum of Ethnology: Where Colorful, Vibrant World Cultures meet

The city of Lisbon in Portugal boasts of 10 centuries of art and history. At least 46 museums are established in the city, encapsulating the country’s rich culture and history. One of the leading museums is the Lisbon Museu Nacional de Etnologia, or, in English, National Museum of Ethnology.

The Museum‘s collections includes artifacts, photographs and other materials that showcase the culture and lifestyle of rural Portugal, of the peoples and cultures of the former colonies of Portugal and also of other world regions. Composing some of the most prominent collections are the galleries that exhibit African cultures, particularly Angola, Nigeria and Cameroon. Also on significant display are collections representing Indonesia, Amazonian Indians, Macao and Timor cultures.

The Museu Nacional de Etnologia in Lisbon opened in 1976, initially offering temporary exhibitions. Through decades, it has accumulated a large number of items, making it one of the largest museums in the city. Today, with over 36,000 historical and cultural items, the Museum offers enough for visitors to immerse in the diverse and colorful cultures of the world.

A visit to the Ethnology Museum in Lisbon is highly recommended for families with kids. The educational and interesting themed exhibits in the museum not only enrich children’s awareness of different cultures. Also, the items in the museum most especially the African masks, intriguing tribal dolls, Amazonian feathered headpieces, and shrunken heads, can pique the curiosity of any school-aged tourist.

For the more mature learners, the Museum also offers an extensive multi-media library that houses a diverse collection of documents on Portuguese art and culture. The public can borrow books, publications, political documents, microfilm and video, even records of folk and classical music from the library.

In addition to housing visual arts, the Museu Nacional de Etnologia in Lisbon also holds activities in various artistic disciplines and department studies. The Educational Department of the Museum hosts video and film showings, workshops and conferences, and other interactive activities such as drawing sessions and cultural talks. Visitors can attend solidarity concerts, classical dance performances, weaving and tapestry workshops and native history courses.

The National Ethnology Museum in Lisbon should be a required stop for every visitor of Lisbon. Viewing the grand collection is like taking a peek into the colorful cultures of the world, housed under one roof.

The Museum is located at Av. Ilha da Madeira, Lisbon 1400-203.

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