Museum Volkenkunde – the National Museum of Ethnology – is a museum about people housed in a historic building just five minutes’ walk from Leiden’s central station.

A huge totem pole greets visitors as they enter the museum through the garden. Museum Volkenkunde presents regularly changing exhibitions and its permanent display features objects from eight different cultural regions. Objects that all have a story to tell about humankind.

Stories about universal human themes like mourning, celebration, ornamentation, prayer, conflict; stories that inspire visitors to find out more about the huge cultural diversity to be found in the world. From Oceania to the Arctic, from Geisha to the Buddha, and from Mecca to Leiden: come to Museum Volkenkunde and discover that, despite cultural differences, we are all essentially the same.