This is an overview of the WW2 related museums and sites in Belgium that I have visited myself and what I think about them. For more details, click on the titles or images to visit the museum’s web sites.

101st-Airborne-Museum-Bastogne101st Airborne Museum Bastogne
The 101st Airborne Museum is more for the paratroopers enthusiasts and knowledgeable collectors. It’s very well laid out as a museum and it has a magnificent collection, but hardly any explanation is given at all. So this is a more of a place to see the items for real that you only know from books.
The highlight of the tour is in the basement. There you will find a very realistic medical ward and surgery and also an air raid shelter with very impressive sound effects. Review
Ardennen Poteau '44 MuseumArdennen Poteau ’44 Museum
These folks charge the same admission fee as Baugnez ’44, but it’s a junk yard. The only nice thing is a Ford M20 and a lot of the rest is either repro or can be seen in nicer condition in other museums in the area. It was really disappointing to me anyway.
Bastogne BarracksBastogne Barracks
Now open for guided tours for the general public, the basement headquarters of 101st Airborne General ‘Nuts’ Mc Auliffe is a must-visit on your tour of the Ardennes battlefield. Threatened by closure of the Belgian army barracks there, it was saved and remodelling work is now under way. By December 2011, the new museum wing should also be ready.
See photos of my visit here
Bastogne Historical CenterBastogne Historical Center (now Bastogne War Museum)
This used to be the best known museum of the Battle of the Bulge. It was great for families and visitors who want to learn about what happened there in the winter of 1944-45, and the new Bastogne War Museum still is (see below). Although it housed a large collection of mannequins, this was not a collector’s museum. Many of the weapons were dummies, even the ones in the show cases.
Bastogne War MuseumBastogne War Museum
This new museum opened in March 2014. I only visited it in the spring of 2016. You can read my review here.This is a must-visit museum when doing a tour of the Bulge!
Baugnez 44 Historical CenterBaugnez 44 Historical Center
Located near Malmedy, this is the most modern museum of the Battle of the Bulge and houses the nicest collection of both American and German militaria. Unlike some others, Baugnez focusses on the actual battle fought in the Malmedy area and the Malmedy Massacre. So it stays away from including uniforms and equipment of other battles. The show cases are artfully laid out with the choicest historical items. There are many unique American paratrooper and German Fallschirmjäger items on display.
See photos of my visit here
Dezember 1944 Historical MuseumDezember 1944 Historical Museum
Located at La Gleize in the Ardennes, this is a small museum, but very nicely laid out and with some excellent pieces on display, including a complete 75mm pack howitzer and many 82nd Airborne items.
See photos of my visit hereThis museum has been completely refurbished in 2013. I need to visit it again and update this review, but I’m told it’s excellent.
Gun covering entrance of Eben-Emaël fortressFort Eben-Emaël
This massive Belgian fortress is situated at the Albert Canal near the Dutch border and was taken by German paratroopers landing on its roof by gliders on 10 May 1940. You are guided by dedicated and knowledgable volunteer guides through the underground hallways of this tremendous building. This is one of the must-see historical sites in Belgiumn, period. Check the web site for opening dates. The top of the structure is now accessible to the public and always open. Also recommended!
See photos of my visit here
History 44 museumHistory 44 Museum
This is a small museum near Houffalize that’s only open in weekends, which is why I missed out on it on my last trip. So I can’t tell you if it’s any good, but I’ll visit is the next time I am in the area.
Musée de la bataille des ArdennesMusée de la bataille des Ardennes
This is a large museum in the town center of La-Roche-en-Ardenne. It is one of the older museums in the Ardennes, but certainly a classic! They have a huge collection with quite a few unique pieces. To mention a few: a full box of luminous disks, paratrooper helmets and uniforms and an awesome gun room.
See photos of my visit here
Musée de la bataille de la Salm et du SaillantMusée de la bataille de la Salme et du Saillant
This museum was situated in the village of Ennal (Vielsalm), but sadly it is now CLOSED forever. The items of the museum collection are said to have been returned to their respective owners. Too bad really, because Vielsalm is right in the middle of an area where there are no other WW2 museums and this is a very interesting theatre of war where the 82nd Airborne fought hard between Trois-Ponts and Salmchâteau.
Royal Army Museum web siteRoyal Army Museum
This is Belgium’s equivalent of the Imperial War Museum and the place to visit when you are in Brussels. It has a huge collection and the WW2 hall has just recently been refurbished. It houses many unique items. You won’t be disappointed. And you can’t be, because best of all, the entrace is free!
Share

Comments

WW2 Museum reviews Belgium — No Comments

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *