Archaeology Museum of Catalonia
A journey from prehistory to the medieval period
The Archaeology Museum of Catalonia offers a permanent exhibition of archaeological remains that illustrate the evolution of Catalonia and its environment from the first prehistoric settlers to the medieval period. This is done using pieces from the main archaeological sites in Catalonia and others from the Iberian peninsula and other Mediterranean locations.
Why visit the Archaeology Museum of Catalonia?
Montjuïc Mountain is home to the Barcelona site of the Archaeology Museum of Catalonia. Specifically it occupies the space that was the Graphic Arts Pavilion of the 1929 Barcelona Universal Exposition and was to be dismantled once the event was over. Finally, it was conserved and the architect Josep Gudiol was responsible for refitting it for the museum, which opened its doors in 1932.
This museum’s permanent exhibition, which covers a surface area of more than 4,000 m², is structured into five chronological spaces: prehistory; protohistory, where the Iberians are the protagonists; the Greek and Phoenician colonisations; the Roman Empire; and, finally, the Visigoths, marking the start of the medieval period.
The most valuable pieces on display include the crown from the 8th-century Treasure of Torredonjimeno; the jaw of a Neanderthal from 53,200 years ago, which was found in Sitges and is one of the oldest examples of human remains in Catalonia; the Iberian Treasure of Tivissa, from the 4th to 3rd centuries BC; and the Roman statue of Priapus found at Hostafrancs, which is from the 2nd century.
The exhibition’s renovation from 2010 to 2013 included, for example, an audiovisual presentation on Bronze Age funeral rites and various didactic resources designed for children. A number of temporary exhibitions, which can be consulted on the museum’s programme, are also held throughout the year.
For the most curious of you
- Did you know? The Archaeology Museum of Catalonia belongs to a network of museums located at archaeological sites throughout Catalonia. In addition to the Barcelona site, the others include the Empúries site, which is Catalonia’s gateway to the Greek and Roman civilisations, and the Ullastret site, where you can visit the remains of an Iberian settlement.
- Local’s tip: The Archaeology Museum of Catalonia organises interesting didactic workshops and other educational activities for children. Check out its activities!
- A must: To learn about part of Catalonia’s history.