Natural History Museum, Vienna Naturhistorisches Museum
The Natural History Museum in Vienna is the counterpart of the Kunsthistorisches Museum, which lies directly opposite. It was designed, like the latter, by G. Semper and K. Hasenauer and was completed in 1881. The exhibits are displayed in 39 galleries and a domed hall, and now form one of the major European natural history collections. The collection was founded by Francis I, the consort of Maria Theresa who opened it to the public in 1765. The exhibits have been on show in the present building since 1889, and the layouts have been constantly extended and modernized.
Natural History Museum Map
Official site: www.nhm-wien.ac.at
Address: Burgring 7, A-1010 Vienna, Austria
Opening hours: 9am-6:30pm; Mon: 9am-9pm; Closed: Tue
Always closed on: New Year's Day (Jan 1), May Day / Labor Day (May 1), All Saints' Day - Christian (Nov 1), Christmas - Christian (Dec 25)
Entrance fee in EUR: Family €16.00, Adult €8.00, Senior €6.00, Child 14 & under €3.50, Child 5 & under FREE
Facilities: Gift shop, Restaurant or food service
Natural History Museum Highlights
Natural History Museum (Mineralogical and Petrographical Department / Upper Ground Floor)
In Vienna's Natural History Museum in Rooms 1 to 5 are the nucleus is the collection of minerals, with many examples from Austria, and materials used in many Viennese buildings, such as the limestone blocks and liassic pillars employed in the construction of the Burgtheater. Minerals from all over the world include a 1m/3ft 4in. long rock crystal from Madagascar. In the Precious Stone Room (Room 4) can be found some beautiful pieces, including Maria Theresa's posy of precious stones, graduated emeralds, an 82-carat uncut diamond and a giant topaz weighing 117kg/258lb. The highlights of the Meteorite Collection include an iron meteorite from Australia weighing 900kg/18cwt and moonstone which Apollo 17 brought back from the moon in 1972.
Natural History Museum (Geological and Palaeontological Department)
Geological and Palaeontological Department (Upper Ground Floor) Rooms 6 to 10 (6 to 9 closed during 1995 for conversion work) at the Vienna Natural History Museum has fossils and petrified skeletons, including many finds from the Alps. The Dinosaur Room (Room 10) is particularly popular; finds from the Mesozoic period include a 27m/89ft long impression of a skeleton from California and a pterosaur (archaeopteryx).
Natural History Museum - Dinosaur Collection
A small Struthiosaurus is to be found in the collection.
Natural History Museum (Prehistory Department)
At the Vienna Natural History Museum in the Prehistory Department (Upper Ground Floor) Rooms 11 to 15 finds from excavations in Austria are displayed, dating from the Stone Age to the Early Middle Ages. In Room 9 can be seen the oldest exhibit, the world-famous chalk figure of the "Willendorf Venus"; measuring barely 11cm/4.5in. in height, it is a fertility statue dating from c. 25,000 BC Hallstatt finds (800-400 BC), which were discovered near Hallstatt in Upper Austria in the 19th and 20th C. and thus gave a phase of the Early Iron Age its name of "Hallstatt Period", include bronzes, grave gifts and remains of Illyrian wooden houses.
Natural History Museum (Anthropological Department)
Anthropological Department (Upper Ground Floor) Rooms 16 and 17 of the Vienna Natural History Museum: The Osteological Collection includes a great number of human skulls from the Neo-Palaeolithic period to the present day. There is also a Somatological Collection.
Natural History Museum (Children's Room)
Children's Room (Upper Ground Floor) Room 18 at the Vienna Natural History Museum is where children can enjoy colored picture books, play with microscopes and video recorders and carry out their own natural history research.
Natural History Museum (Domed Hall)
Domed Hall (First Floor) of Vienna's Natural History Museum has a skeleton of an extinct species of sea-cow (manatee).
Natural History Museum (Botanical Exhibition Gallery)
Botanical Exhibition Gallery (First Floor) Room 21 at Vienna's Natural History Museum has models of fungi and forms of spores.
Natural History Museum (Zoological Department)
In Vienna's Natural History Museum's Zoological Department (First Floor) Rooms 22 to 39 is the collection which illustrates in impressive fashion the long evolution from the single cell to anthropoid apes, and provides detailed information on various species of vertebrates, insects and invertebrates.