In Vitoria-Gasteiz you can find a lot of museums. The almost all the museums in the Basque country are free, so you can teak a peak, every time you like. The museums are all in the center of the city so if you have a rainy day on your vacation or are really interested in art, playing cards, sacred art, arms of archeology you can take a look.
The sad thing is that all of the museums have information signs in Basque or Spanish. So for tourist is hard to understand the information that is written. Some museums solved that problem by having audio tours. Then you can chose you own language and understand the given information. But in the other museums it doesn’t really matter if you don’t understand the information, just looking and observing is fun enough.
Museum of Sacred Art of Álava is located in the Cathedral of Mary Immaculate. The collection is divers. There are paintings, sculptures, statues and stained glass windows. The collections is interesting to people who are interested in Catholic beliefs but also for not believers. The are different images and on every painting Jesus Christ is different but the real beauty is the cathedral itself. I has a lot of stained glass windows with look pretty when the sun shines trough it and there is even a small model in the church so you can see how the big cathedral looks like. But don’t forget the outside.
On the outside the catholic refugee is also very beautiful. Don’t forget to give it a second look. You can search for gargoyles close to the windows and walk around the cathedral to see all the different sides.
Museum of Natural Sciences is a very small museum. I only has two small floors and the objects you can see over here aren’t that special. The museum has a few fossils from dinosaurs but not anything worth mentioning. The collection of the butterflies is pretty but I bit sad for all those creatures who died and are in a museum.
In an hour you are done with this small museum especially when you are foreigners and can’t read the signs and information.
Museum of Archeology is located in the Bibet building. The building is the opposite from the collection it is a new modern building with three floors of old pots, pans, arrowheads and farm equipment. The museum is interactive. You can see small clips about the found artifacts. But after seeing a the artifacts a few times you get a bit bored of seeing only pots, arrowheads and farm equipment.
Fournier Museum of Playing Cards is a nice an interactive museum. Almost at every floor of the museum (it has three floors) you can watch a short movie about the cards. For example on the ground floor you have a clip about the pressing of the cards in different ways.
The cards that are displayed are very different. Of course the have the cards they use in the area but also the poker cards, tarot cards, Chinese cards, French cards, small cards, round cards and more. It’s fun to see all the different designs, pictures and sizes. Who new, that the three floors of the building could be filled with only cards.
Museum of Fine Arts in the Palacio de Augusri, in this museum you will find a fine selection of Spanish art from the 18th and 19th centuries and a collection of artworks that trace the development of Basque art from 1850 to 1950.
Arms Museum of Álava is a museum were you van find, like the name says, all different kind of arms from the prehistoric, middle ages and also more recent, from the 20th century. There are swords, axes, shields, knifes, armors but also guns.
You can see arm from all different parts of the world like Arabia, Central Africa and Far East. And a museum with this special subject has to bee visit.
Basque Museum of Contemporary Art (Artium) is the only museum you have to pay for. The entree fee is around six euros but you get a lot for that in return if you are an art lover. The best ting about this museums is that it is also opened on Sunday’s, so if you bored on you free day you can visit a museum.
But beware, the museum is very small. There is only one floor (but it is big) with modern, impressionism art. And as an exception this museum has information in English.