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MUSE Pass: “The Infinite Discovery” of Museums in Thailand

In its fourth season, the MUSE pass is available for purchase from now until 30 September 2016. This 199-baht pass offers admission to 40 museums in Thailand, with a validity of one year from the date of purchase. In addition to being an awesome way to see great museums in Bangkok and other provinces, you get discount coupons redeemable at participating stores, restaurants and businesses.

Below are some of our favourite family-friendly museums covered in this promotion.

Museum Siam is wonderful for children of all ages. Spread on three floors of a beautiful building that used to house the Commerce Ministry, the museum features hands-on exhibits that encourage kids to explore Thai culture and history. Highlights include an ancient battle game, a room full of traditional Thai toys and a mock archaeological dig site. *Please note: the permanent exhibit, “The Account of Thailand”, is closed for renovations until early 2017; re-opening date TBA. Patrons are still welcome to visit the temporary exhibits, cafe, and grounds.*

Rattanakosin Exhibition Hall showcases Thailand’s artistic and cultural legacies of the Rattanakosin era through interactive exhibits arranged as two separate tours (each are about two hours long). Children will especially enjoy playing with hand puppets, learning khon (Thai masked dance) gestures and watching the vintage photography exhibit. On the fourth floor of the building, visitors can admire magnificent views of old Bangkok, including Loha Prasat.

Batcat Toy Museum, in the Huamark area of Bangkok, houses one of Asia’s largest toy and superhero memorabilia collections. There is a strong emphasis on Batman, with the largest private collection ever put on display. The museum has amassed over 50,000 pieces including toys, magazines, games, costumes and more dating back to the 1960s. The nostalgic charm is endearing, perfect for a family friendly day out.

Tooney Toy Museum, since opening in the Pakkred district, Nonthaburi, in 2012, has been dazzling fans of popular Asian and western comic series and movies with its massive collection of toys, dolls, figurines, and related accessories. Highlights include the Toy Story room, Coca Cola memorabilia, Gundam figures, Marvel and DC superhero action figures, Lord of the Rings dioramas, Harry Potter wands, and Lego world monuments.

National Aviation Museum of the Royal Thai Airforce collects, restores and preserves defence articles of different periods, including equipment and aircraft in use during the early period of Thai aviation history up to the present. Located behind the domestic terminal of Don Mueang Airport, the museum is modest in size but boasts some rare aircrafts, including some that are the very last in existence worldwide.

The Museum of Natural History, Chulalongkorn University, gets visitors to explore over 10,000 species of living things. One of the most complete natural history museums in Southeast Asia, the museum houses more than 100,000 specimens including insects, invertebrates, turtles and tortoises, and snails.

Bangkok Sculpture Center, located in Soi Naunchan on an area of 12 rai (a utility area of 4,000 sq.m.), is a non-profit private organization established to promote Thai art. The center is privately funded, and includes an array of pieces, including indoor and outdoor displays from private collections. The artwork reflects the long journey of Thai sculpture, starting from the Buddhist Era in the 13th century (Chiang San) to modern day.

National Geological Museum is located in the same compound as the National Science Museum in Pathum Thani. Exhibits introduce the evolution of life through four time eras, showcasing the diversity of living things, from single cell organisms to members of the animal kingdom. Children will get a thrill from the life-sized dinosaur models, as well as the taxidermic models of Thailand’s indigenous animal species.

3D Interactive Art Museum: Art in Paradise Bangkok is a popular attraction among locals and tourists. Here, experience 150 art installations which serve as illusions to trick the eye into seeing 3D imagery. Lots of funny moments and photo ops here!

Real Zoo, in Ayutthaya province, offers bizarre and rare creatures from all over the world, covering over 200 species in every class of the animal kingdom, from water to the sky. Highlights are the crocs and gators, lizards and snakes.

Ripley’s Believe It or Not! in Pattaya, Chonburi province, highlights “The truth that you need to see for yourself”. The museum features a collection of oddities from all over the world – discover over 350 amazing things, including a mask made from human skin, a four-eyed man, and many more.

Other museums covered by the MUSE pass, which may be of interest to older teens and adults, in Bangkok and its vicinity, include:

  • 3 Silapa Rattanakosin Resource Center, focusing on national culture changes and revolution
  • Anti-Corruption Museum, a display of corruption cases from past to present
  • Baan Mowan, unlocking the secret of Yahom traditional Thai aromatic medicine
  • Bangkok Folk’s Museum, displaying artefacts reflecting an upper class Bangkok lifestyle during the pre- and post-World War II periods
  • Coin Museum, Treasury Department, Thailand, showing the history of various mediums of exchange, from past to present
  • Department of Lands Museum, showcasing the history of mapping and division of land parcels
  • GIT Gem and Jewelry Museum, displaying the origin of gems and jewellery, from upstream to downstream activities
  • King Prajadhipok Museum, commemorating the life of King Rama VII
  • Krungthai Art Gallery, showcasing Krungthai Bank’s small contemporary art collection
  • Phra Maha Mondop Wat Trimit Wittayaram Museum, telling the story of Chinese settlement in Bangkok during the reigns of Kings Rama I to III, in the context of their Buddhist faith
  • Phya Thai Palace, offering a glimpse of genteel, old world charm
  • Pipat Banglumphu Local Heritage Museum, preserving the heritage of the Banglumphu area
  • Police Museum, exhibiting the history of the Thai police since the 16th century
  • Ratchadamnoen Contemporary Art Center, showing local and international works of contemporary art in various mediums
  • SACICT Gallery, spotlighting the exquisite arts and craft designs supported by Her Majesty Queen Sirikit
  • Sam Sen Nai Philatelic Museum, appealing to stamp collectors everywhere
  • Suksason Museum, a contemporary museum that relives history through antique appliances, toys and a market model
  • Thai Film Museum, preserving Thai film history
  • Thai PBS Museum, displaying a range of media-related exhibits
  • The Queen’s Gallery, showcasing the work of Thai national artists, among others

And in other provinces:

  • Khon Village (Nakhon Pathom), a one-stop venue for food, sweets, crafts, Thai arts, culture and entertainment
  • Khonkaen Philatelic Museum (Khonkaen), displaying items and exhibits related to postal communications in Thailand
  • King Rama II Memorial Park (Samut Songkram), commemorating the king’s patronage of the arts and culture
  • Knowledge Center of Chachoengsao (Chachoengsao), a collection of books, music, films and other creative endeavours that promote knowledge acquisition
  • Phuket Taihua Museum (Phuket), documenting Phuket’s history through different angles, including the Phuket-China connection
  • Sgt. Maj. Thawee Folk Museum (Pitsanulok), conveying local knowledge and lifestyle of Thais from past to present
  • Southeast Asian Ceramics Museum (Pathum Thani), displaying the history of Thai ceramics from all eras
  • Sab Champa Museum (Lopburi), showing pre-historic, Indian-influenced artefacts from the city of Sab Champa, around 3,000 years ago
  • Tanland (Ayuthaya), aka Ichitan Museum, showcasing an eco-friendly living concept, inspired by the floods of 2011 and Ichitan founder Tan Passakornatee’s passion for sustainability

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