When I was on a visit to Hamburg last year, I was mostly spending my time there aimlessly wandering around, eating lots of fish and enjoying the vibes of the harbour (Hamburg is a port city). And while stress-free, sightseeing-flexible style of travel is definitely pleasant, at some point I got a huge bucket list itch and was eager to start checking items off my Hamburg list (yes, I am that type of traveller). Luckily, there’s Tripadvisor. My visit to the world’s most popular travel forum was brief, though — I stopped at #1. According to the list, the best thing to do in Hamburg was going to Miniature Wunderland, a toy railway museum. And there was no way I was visiting it.
At least, that’s what I was telling myself.
Seriously, though — a toy museum? What am I — a five-year-old? Too late. I was already standing in the hour-long queue, which seemed endless. But there was ice cream, after all, and it gave me hope. So with lifted spirits, I entered the gate of the World in Miniature and was blown away, right away.
Miniatur Wunderland is, quite literally, our whole world in miniature. So it’s not just about toys and railways — it’s about us, our earth and the history of our time. The exhibition started with the simple, basic scenes depicting the pre-medieval life in the most careful detail. Little monks, little people, little trees and little cobblestone roads were so neat and so cute that they made me feel seriously overwhelmed. Little did I know that it would only get better.
I was led from Scandinavia to Germany, from Austria to Switzerland, from Europe to far-away America in just a few hours. With every part of the museum, the world was progressively getting bigger and bigger and my mouth was opening wider and wider. Everything around me was just impressive, and I can’t even choose my favourite part. Perhaps, the mountains, though?
Or the sparkling snow?
Or the Berlin Wall?
Seriously, this museum is brilliant!
Miniatur Wunderland has 930 trains with over 14 000 wagons that together cover the distance of several hundreds kilometres each day. It’s a Guinness World Records kind of fact. There are 335,000 lights, 228,000 trees, and 215,000 human figures (scaled 1:87) that live in the 1,300 square metre space. And the good thing is, it’s expanding. Next year, the museum will complete the construction of Italy, and also build Monaco, England and France — in other words, enough to be setting even bigger records.
I don’t really remember how much time I’ve spent walking around the museum. Three hours? Four? Don’t know. What I do know, however, is that my feet were tired and swollen as if I was sightseeing in Hamburg the whole day. And honestly, it really did feel like that! So lots of love and peace to Miniatur Wunderland – Tripadvisor didn’t lie.
Over to you! Have you been to Miniatur Wunderland in Hamburg?