Museum of West Bohemia
The monumental neo-Renaissance building, which houses the museum, and its large circular fountain can be found in the green belt of gardens that runs through Pilsen’s historic city centre. Among some of the unique items on display include a rare collection of early European firearms from the 14th-17th centuries, which is located in the municipal armoury, a library in the Art Nouveau style, complete with invaluable first editions and a high-quality collection of applied arts.
Tuesday – Sunday
Only open on Mondays in the event of a state holiday.
Adult CZK 60 – 80
Children, students and seniors CZK 30 – 40
Family Ticket CZK 130 – 180
13 33 40
Kopeckého sady 2
301 00 Pilsen
The Museum of West Bohemia, with over two million items on display, is one of the largest museums in the Czech Republic. You will find four permanent expositions within the main museum building in the Kopeckého sady area of Pilsen (a section of the city centre’s green belt of gardens). Short-term exhibits are also often on display here. Upon entering the foyer of the museum, you will be immediately greeted by František Křižík’s original arc lamps.
Few are aware that the oldest surviving armoury in the Czech Republic is located in Pilsen. Charles IV, one of the most famous Czech monarchs, is the armoury’s founder. A unique collection of firearms and weapons is on display here. The armoury’s collection of Gothic rifles and ensemble of muskets from the days of the Thirty Years’ War are considered a rarity in Europe. Part of the exposition also includes a collection of stone archways, taken from some of Pilsen’s demolished homes, as well as a section of the original city ramparts. In addition, visitors can expect to view a panoramic picture of Mansfeld’s conquest on Pilsen.
The Archaeology Exposition reveals the secrets of prehistoric settlements from the beginning of time to the days of the early Middle Ages. The artefacts introduced in this collection date back to over 130 years of field research. The exhibits include some quite unique objects such as a bronze shield from Plzeň-Jíkalka; a Neolithic clay sculpture of a woman from Vochov; golden objects from burial mound sites of the Middle Bronze Age, and many other exceptional artefacts. Young and old visitors alike can try their hand at weaving on a vertical loom replica or grinding corn with a grindstone.
While visiting the History Exposition, visitors can check out 3D constructions of the Přemyslid-Dynasty centre of Old Pilsen (Starý Plzenec) or compare what life was like in a medieval peasant’s hut with that of relaxing in a parlour room, next to the tile stove of a home in the city. One of the most significant items on display include a replica of the printing press, which refers to Pilsen’s book printing origins. Other unique archaeological finds from Pilsen including mirrors from the Middle Ages, touchstones, a collection of both Gothic and Renaissance-style glass receptacles, guild coffers and torture instruments as well as many other one-of-a-kind items.
Collection of applied arts
This recently opened exposition of applied arts and handicrafts will impress you with its variety. You can expect to see artistically flawless showpieces made of porcelain, glass and various metals, many of which have been on display here since the beginning of the last century. These items are shown in all their glory in the reconstructed Art-Nouveau rooms located on the third floor of the museum. There are over 2,500 carefully selected works exhibited here from the total collection of over 25,000 items. The oldest pieces would now be considered antiques, whereas some of the newest items have only recently been added to the collection. These immaculate, handcrafted works of metal, wood or ceramics act as representative pieces from the collection of the Near and Far East.