Tuol Sleng Genocide Museum, Cambodia
The Tuol Sleng Genocide Museum in Phnom Penh, the capital of Cambodia, chronicles the Cambodian genocide. The site is a former high school, which was used as the notorious security prison (S-21) by the Khmer Rouge regime from its rise to power in 1975 to its fall in 1979. The museum displays include room after room of harrowing black and white photographs—virtually all of the men, women and children pictured were later killed.
Forbidden City-Palace Museum, China
Forbidden City, also known as the Palace Museum and Gu Gong in Chinese, lies at the city centre of Beijing and once served as the imperial palace for 24 emperors during the Ming and Qing Dynasties (1368-1911). The palace complex exemplifies traditional Chinese palatial architecture and has influenced cultural and architectural developments in east Asia and elsewhere. The Forbidden City was declared a World Heritage Site in 1987 and is listed by Unesco as the largest collection of preserved ancient wooden structures in the world.
Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum, Japan
The Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum in central Hiroshima, Japan, is dedicated to documenting the atomic bombing of Hiroshima in World War II. It was the only structure left standing in the area where the first atomic bomb exploded on August 6, 1945. The museum was established in August 1955 and is the most popular of Hiroshima’s destinations for school field trips from all over Japan and for international visitors. It also maintains its functional and spiritual authenticity as a place for prayer for world peace and the ultimate elimination of all nuclear weapons.
Vietnam Museum of Ethnology
The Vietnam Museum of Ethnology in Hanoi, Vietnam, focuses on the 54 officially recognised ethnic groups in Vietnam. It is a fabulous museum that has well-presented tribal art, artefacts and everyday objects gathered from across the nation, and showcases examples of traditional village houses. In addition, there are also leisure pursuits on display, including traditional water puppet theatre and calligraphy. Displays are well labelled in Vietnamese, French and English.
National Palace Museum, Taiwan
The National Palace Museum, located in Taipei in Taiwan, has a permanent collection of nearly 7,00,000 pieces of ancient Chinese imperial artefacts and artworks, making it one of the largest of its type in the world. The most popular item is the Jadeite Cabbage with Insects—a small carving of a Chinese cabbage which is about the same size as a paperback book. Another popular wing contains household items from the Ming dynasty, including a bowl made from a human skull, which was used by a high-ranking monk. The museum attracts 14,000 visitors a day.
Pinang Peranakan Mansion, Malaysia
Located in George Town, Penang, Malaysia, the museum is dedicated to Penang’s Peranakan heritage. Here, the typical home of a rich Baba of a century ago is recreated to offer a glimpse of their opulent lifestyle and of their many customs and traditions. With over 1,000 pieces of antiques and collectibles of the era on display, this Baba-Nyonya museum is housed in one of Penang’s heritage mansions. Due to its unique architecture and interior design that reflect the lifestyles of the Peranakans in Penang, the mansion has been featured in several television series and reality TV shows. The Straits Eclectic-style mansion, originally painted white, incorporates both European and Chinese designs.
Victoria Memorial Hall, Kolkata
The Victoria Memorial Hall is India’s largest and one of its oldest museum libraries. Situated in Kolkata, this large marble building, dedicated to the memory of Queen Victoria, was built between 1906 and 1921. It has 28,394 artefacts and around 4,000 paintings spread over 57 acres. The museum features Indo-Saracenic revivalist style. The style is an amalgam of British and Mughal elements. Atop the central dome of the Victoria Memorial is the 16 feet figure of the Angel of Victory. The memorial is huge in size and houses beautiful gardens and receives 20 lakh visitors every year.
Vietnamese Women’s Museum
This modern museum located in Hanoi showcases women’s role in Vietnam. Labelled in English and French, it’s the memories of the wartime contribution by individual heroic women that are most poignant. The museum has a stunning collection of propaganda posters, as well as costumes, tribal basketware and fabric motifs from Vietnam’s ethnic minority groups. The main building is divided into four areas: permanent exhibition, special exhibition, the discovery room, and the museum shop. The Museum is also a centre for cultural exchange with women from other nations with the goal of fostering ‘equality, development and peace’.
War Remnants Museum, Vietnam
The War Remnants Museum in Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam, contains exhibits relating to the Vietnam War and the first Indochina War involving the French colonialists. The museum comprises a series of themed rooms in several buildings, with period military equipment placed within a walled yard. There are a number of pieces of unexploded ordnance stored in the corner of the yard, with their charges and/or fuses removed.
Museum of Qin Terracotta Warriors & Horses, China
In 1974, when a group of peasants was digging a well, they surprisingly unearthed fragments of life-sized terracotta warriors made in the Qin Dynasty (221 BC-206 BC), which became the greatest archaeological discovery of the 20th century. The Qin Terra Cotta Army Museum, built at the original excavating place, is a hangar-like construction over Pit 1 and was officially opened in 1979.