Since we’re travelling through Germany by train as part of our Indie Germany trip, it seemed logical to visit the DB Railway Museum in Nuremberg. Craig wasn’t too keen, but I wanted to learn a little about the history of the railways and check out some of the locomotives on display.
The museum is large and well laid out, with comprehensive signs explaining exhibits — the only problem is that these signs are only in German, not so useful for us English-speakers. However, main titles are in English as well as German, so you can get an idea of what the exhibits are about even if you can’t understand the bulk of the text.
Audioguides are available for just €1 (not covered by the Nuremberg Card), and they provide good overviews of each of the rooms — but they don’t help when something catches your eye and you want to know what it is.
Despite not understanding the signs, I really enjoyed the museum, and it’s a must-visit for any train lover. Apart from traditional museum exhibits and diagrams of Germany’s train network, there’s a seriously cheesy 15-minute video about the first railway in Germany — and it has subtitles in English. Plus there’s a huge room full of locomotives and carriages, some of which you can climb into. A large model railway plays every hour, and there’s a ride-on train in the impressive kids’ section on the third floor. I also found the section about the railways during the Second World War to be particularly interesting.
Your entrance fee (€5) also gives you admission to the Communication Museum on the upper floors of the same building; here information signs are in both German and English. There are plenty of hands-on displays to get you thinking about different forms of communication, from spoken and written language to the internet, but unfortunately most of the explanations of how to use the displays are only in German. That didn’t stop us fooling around a little and writing our names with cuneiform and hieroglyphic stamps.
On the whole, if you’re interested in trains or the history of communication, the DB Railway Museum and the Communication Museum are well worth the ticket price and are a good way to fill a rainy afternoon.