The new Weltmuseum Wien

for the City of Vienna

We closed our doors on the 3rd of November, 2014  – and we will reopen in autumn 2017. After changing our name from Ethnological Museum to Weltmuseum Wien (World Museum Vienna) and adopting the corresponding new corporate design in the Spring of 2013, this is another landmark in the history of this institution. We have been working for months now, together with our consortium of international architects, on redesigning the Museum. Now the plans are becoming reality – and we can promise: something very special is being created in the landscape of international museums.

Fourteen showrooms are planned which will be strung like a chain of pearls as a series of stories. An altogether WOW and AHA effect!

Renderings of the new collections

Why are we here?

Museums of this kind are the witnesses to the cultural diversity of human societies and they reflect the changes which have taken place over the centuries within these societies. Exhibitions provide the museums with an opportunity to display their treasures to the general public. In this way individual cultural areas and the world as a whole can become more meaningful which can in turn lead to greater understanding of the global diversity of our world.

In today’s global village where diversity is so obvious the collections within the museum can make a meaningful contribution to an ever changing global cultural environment.

The History of the Institution

The Weltmuseum Wien has one of the most comprehensive collections of ethnographic objects, historical photographs and books about cultures outside of Europe and is one of the most important ethnological museums in the world.

The origins of the Museum reach back to 1806, when the purchase of part of the “Cook Collection” spurred the establishment of a separate k.u.k ethnographic collection in the Imperial Natural History Cabinet (Hofnaturalienkabinett). Starting in 1876 the greatly enlarged collection was administered by the Anthropological-Ethnographical Department of the Natural History Museum. Then, in 1928, the separate Museum for Ethnology in the rooms of the Neue Burg was founded.


Weltmuseum Wien
Neue Burg
Heldenplatz, 1010 Wien

Opening hours
The Weltmuseum Wien is closed and will be restructured from the ground up.

Holiday opening hours