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Neanderthal Museum Header alternativ Neandertaler mit erlegter Beute © Neanderthal Museum M, © Neanderthal Museun

Neander­th­al Mu­seum in Mettmann


A jour­ney through time dis­cov­er­ing the evol­u­tion of man

How did Neander­thals live in NRW? Which tools did they pro­duce? And what did they eat? The Neander­th­al mu­seum gives an­swers to these ques­tions. Hu­man de­vel­op­ment is the centre of the per­man­ent ex­hib­i­tion of this house.

Visitors to the Neanderthal Museum in Mettmann embark upon a journey through time discovering the evolution of man. In 1856 the fossilised remains of a Neanderthal were found in the nearby town of Mettmann, where the museum now stands. According to the latest findings, this Neanderthal, or prehistoric man, must have lived in the Neander Valley some 42,000 years ago.

Founded in 1996, the Neanderthal Museum’s exhibits include the eponymous skeleton from 1856 as well as finds from more recent excavations at the Neander Valley site. A colossal “Workbench of inventions” shows milestones of human ingenuity from flint to the fuel cell. The interactive permanent exhibition also contains five themed areas offering a chronological overview of the history of humanity and narrow the focus of this complex topic: “Life and Survival”, “Tools and Knowledge”, “Myth and Religion”, “Environment and Diet” and “Communication and Society”.

Another attraction that is particularly exciting for children is the Stone Age Workshop, where young craftspeople can try their hand at making tools just as our prehistoric ancestors once did. They can sew with bone needles, make knives with flint blades, craft bows and arrows, and closely examine casts of human bone and famous fossil discoveries.

The “Menschenspuren” (Human Traces) art trail may be of greater interest to adult visitors to the museum. It follows a path that starts directly at the museum and wends its way around the Düssel, giving visitors a view of ten sculptures by various artists. Children, meanwhile, can visit prehistoric animals at the game reserve adjacent to the art trail. The reserve is home to bison, aurochs and tarpan (wild horses) – all re-established breeds of ice age animals that died out hundreds of years ago. There is also a great deal to discover outside the museum building: not far from the museum is the Neanderthal discovery site. The Feldhof cave itself was lost forever due to limestone quarrying. Today the site where the most famous prehistoric Germans were discovered is staged as an archaeological garden. Stone crosses, a time axis, alignment stakes and stone pallets are combined with the topography of the site to give an account of the changing history of the valley.

Map of NRW

Images and videos


Be inspired: images of your NRW

Das Neanderthal Museum liegt in Mettmann an der einstigen Fundstelle des Neandertaler-Skeletts, © Stiftung Neanderthal Museum
Neanderthal Museum, Außenansicht, © Neanderthal Museum/A.Laaks
Neanderthal Museum in Mettmann, © tiftung Neanderthal Museum
Das Neanderthal Museum hat Humor: Hier ist ein Neanderthaler als George Clooney verkleidet, © Neanderthal Museum / H.Neumann
Besucher kommen dem Neanderthaler ganz nah, © Stiftung Neanderthal Museum
Neanderthal Museum, Führung durch die Dauerausstellung, © Neanderthal Museum
Neanderthal Museum, Höhlenraum mit Steinzeitwerkstatt und Kindern, © Neanderthal Museum
Neanderthal Museum, Werkzeuge herstellen, © Neanderthal Museum

More information


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Contact

Neanderthal Museum
Talstraße 300
40822 Mettmann
Telephone: +49 2104 9797-0
E-mail: museum@neanderthal.de
Website: www.neanderthal.de

Getting there

with Google Maps
by train

Opening Hours

Tuesday 10:00 - 18:00
Wednesday 10:00 - 18:00
Thursday 10:00 - 18:00
Friday 10:00 - 18:00
Saturday 10:00 - 18:00
Sunday 10:00 - 18:00

From November - February the discovery site closes at 4 pm;
From March - October it closes at 5 pm.

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