The Olympic Museum (Musée olympique) in Lausanne houses permanent and temporary exhibits relating to sport and the Olympic movement. With more than 10,000 artifacts, the museum is the largest archive of Olympic Games in the world and one of Lausanne's prime tourist site attracting more than 250,000 visitors each year.

The Olympic Museum and the Olympic Park are located at Ouchy, south of Lausanne. The headquarters of the International Olympic Committee are located at Vidy, to the west of Ouchy.

The museum was founded in 1993. The permanent exhibition is organized into three major themes on three separate floors: Olympic World, Olympic Games, and Olympic Spirit. A visit begins on the third floor, where the Olympic World part of the exhibition informs visitors of the history of the ancient Olympic Games and the rebirth of the modern Games in the 19th century. Highlights include a display of Olympic torches, as well as a video documenting major moments in the history of opening ceremonies history.

The second floor focuses on Olympic Games. Sporting equipment for a variety of sports are on display, and visitors are introduced to the Youth Olympic Games and the Paralympic Games. More than 1,000 video clips of Olympic Games events and athletes are can be searched and viewed at individual viewing stations.

The final part of the permanent exhibit covers the Olympic Spirit, where visitors are made to feel part of an Olympic Village and can test their balance, agility, and mental skills with interactive exercises. Olympic medals are also on display.

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Details

Founded: 1993
Category: Museums in Switzerland

Rating

4.6/5 (based on Google user reviews)

User Reviews

Eric Vlach (48 days ago)
This is one of my all time favorite museums of all time. As opposed to stereotypical museums where they display artifacts in a bland, one dimensional way, the Olympic museum includes a wealth of interactive exhibits, put together in extremely interesting, tasteful, engaging, and educational ways. If you are at all interested in the Olympics, you will not be disappointed in your visit.
Lily Fang (2 months ago)
Wasn't sure if I would regret spending 18CHF on entry, but am super glad I decided to go. I normally get bored quickly at museums, but this one had a lot of cool artifacts, interesting videos, and interactive exhibits. I especially liked the history behind the Olympic torches and seeing the real thing! The highlight videos of each Olympic games were also a great history lesson, and seeing medalists' costumes and equipment was cool (Michael Phelps' Athens swimsuit is there!). Would definitely recommend.
Jason AC (2 months ago)
First time in this well known museum. We spend 2 hours, but as an adult I could have spent another 2h more, reading and learning about the history of the games. The kids were interested, jumping from one exhibit to the other. The good news was the ability to buy a family entry ticket for a reduced price, instead of individual entry fees. The bad news was that we did not take the audio guides because it was sooo expensive.
Callum T (4 months ago)
The Olympic Museum is a really nice couple of hours of walking. You do get to visually see how some of these world records look in real life. They are just incredible and it shocks you. The grounds are really nice and there are statues you can't climb on so children may need to be kept a close eye on. I found it really interesting and fascinating and I'm sure you will too.
Stephanie J. Thurber (4 months ago)
I was pleasantly surprised by this museum. As a person who is not a huge fan of museums in general, I had low expectations for this place, but since everything was closed on Sundays in the city, it was the obvious choice to visit. It had a lot of history and cool outfits from the past Olympians to look at and had a lot of interactive features. I would highly recommend if you're in the city, and especially if you love museums or the Olympic games.
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The Porta Nigra (Latin for black gate) is the largest Roman city gate north of the Alps. It is designated as part of the Roman Monuments, Cathedral of St. Peter and Church of Our Lady in Trier UNESCO World Heritage Site. The name Porta Nigra originated in the Middle Ages due to the darkened colour of its stone; the original Roman name has not been preserved. Locals commonly refer to the Porta Nigra simply as Porta.

The Porta Nigra was built in grey sandstone between 186 and 200 AD. The original gate consisted of two four-storied towers, projecting as near semicircles on the outer side. A narrow courtyard separated the two gate openings on either side. For unknown reasons, however, the construction of the gate remained unfinished. For example, the stones at the northern (outer) side of the gate were never abraded, and the protruding stones would have made it impossible to install movable gates. Nonetheless, the gate was used for several centuries until the end of the Roman era in Trier.

In Roman times, the Porta Nigra was part of a system of four city gates, one of which stood at each side of the roughly rectangular Roman city. The Porta Nigra guarded the northern entry to the Roman city, while the Porta Alba (White Gate) was built in the east, the Porta Media (Middle Gate) in the south, and the Porta Inclyta (Famous Gate) in the west, next to the Roman bridge across the Moselle. The gates stood at the ends of the two main streets of the Roman Trier, one of which led north-south and the other east-west. Of these gates, only the Porta Nigra still exists today.

In the early Middle Ages the Roman city gates were no longer used for their original function and their stones were taken and reused for other buildings. Also iron and lead braces were broken out of the walls of the Porta Nigra for reuse. Traces of this destruction are still clearly visible on the north side of the gate.

After 1028, the Greek monk Simeon lived as a hermit in the ruins of the Porta Nigra. After his death (1035) and sanctification, the Simeonstift monastery was built next to the Porta Nigra to honor him. Saving it from further destruction, the Porta Nigra was transformed into a church: The inner court of the gate was roofed and intermediate ceilings were inserted. The two middle storeys of the former gate were converted into church naves: the upper storey being for the monks and the lower storey for the general public. The ground floor with the large gates was sealed, and a large outside staircase was constructed alongside the south side (the town side) of the gate, up to the lower storey of the church. A small staircase led further up to the upper storey. The church rooms were accessible through former windows of the western tower of the Porta Nigra that were enlarged to become entrance doors (still visible today). The top floor of the western tower was used as church tower, the eastern tower was leveled, and an apse added at its east side. An additional gate - the much smaller Simeon Gate - was built adjacent to the East side of the Porta Nigra and served as a city gate in medieval times.

In 1802 Napoleon Bonaparte dissolved the church in the Porta Nigra and the monastery beside it, along with the vast majority of Trier"s numerous churches and monasteries. On his visit to Trier in 1804, Napoleon ordered that the Porta Nigra be converted back to its Roman form. Only the apse was kept; but the eastern tower was not rebuilt to its original height. Local legend has it that Napoleon originally wanted to completely tear down the church, but locals convinced him that the church had actually been a Gaulish festival hall before being turned into a church. Another version of the story is that they told him about its Roman origins, persuading him to convert the gate back to its original form.

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