Museums and toys have been a part of human history for over 2000 years. Toy museums open to the public are a relatively new phenomenon. The initial toy museums were more about collectibles and people's collections. These were only accessible to the upper and middle classes or on special request.
Lately, toy museums have become centres of intrigue and artistic and expressional discovery. Such museums host soft toys, a unique collection of ancient and vintage toy artefacts and remnants of the glorious age of toys. These museums have become the epitome of learning and research for budding scholars who are more interested in the history of toys and their developments over time.
- Dolls Museum, Delhi
Shankar's International Museum, also known as the Doll Museum, houses one of India's unique collections of Dolls. It might seem like a collector's place for foreign or Indian dolls, but it is much more. When Shankar set up this museum, it was not just to make a mere collection of soft toys or dolls, but he had the soul of the entire country in mind. Every doll on display in the museum brings with it the history of its culture and some aspect of its social and geographical life. So much so that this toy museum was regarded as a mini United Nations at one point in time. As of today, this toy museum houses a unique collection of over 7000 soft toys.
- World's Largest Toy Museum Complex, Branson, United States
Situated in Branson, Missouri, this toy museum has over 1 million toys on its premises. The soft toys present in the museum offer a wonderful parade of intellectual and fun properties. The museum complex is divided into 6 different museums. There is a range of toy collections from the 19th century to the present day. Everyone has something that can matter to their age and find fun and interesting. It offers nostalgia and grants an attraction that will stay in one's memories for years.
- Teddy Bear Museum, Vietnam
The Teddy Bear Museum in Vietnam is one of the biggest bear museums in the world. There are over 500 varieties of soft toys, including some made back in the 18th and 19th centuries. All are visible at the exhibits, from the pharaohs of Egypt to the Mayan tribes of Southern America to the indigenous people of Oceanic islands. Inspired by the action-adventure film franchise Indian Jones, the teddy bears take visitors to different places worldwide. This will be a destination that travellers and their families cannot miss on their trip.
- Teddy Bear Museum, South Korea
This teddy bear museum on Jeju-do Island in South Korea celebrates soft toys of all shapes and sizes. The toy museum is made up of three halls, including history, art, and the project exhibit hall. Throughout the museum, visitors will enjoy many animate displays of teddy bears in action. There are themed exhibits depicting celebrities, historical events and well-known masterpieces from famous artists replicated using teddy bears. There are also soft toys modelling fashions from around the world depicting various cultures, customs, and rituals in this teddy bear museum.
- Dorset Teddy Bear Museum, England
The Dorset Teddy Bear Museum is a must-visit, open 365 days a year and perfect for all ages. This toy museum houses some real treasures and is home to over 100 varieties of adorable teddy bears. These teddies have been around the museum for over 2 centuries. It is a perfect place for families and friends to spend some wonderful time observing the art of toy making. Additionally, the experience is more memorable by visiting the gift shop and purchasing replicas of some vintage teddy bears.
- Izu Teddy Bear Museum, Japan
The Teddy Bear Museum has a fascinating collection of soft toys in all shapes and sizes. Many of the teddy bears are styled in English style and have a plethora of otherworldly varieties. Furthermore, there is also an animated exhibition of all the artefacts in the Toy museum. The exhibits are heart-warming and provide a new form of entertainment to young ones, families, and friends.
- Nasu Teddy Bear Museum, Japan
This Toy Museum houses soft toys curated by 100 artists. Accepting the cultures and showcasing the geographical teddy bear culture of different countries. The Museum building has been modelled after a British Manor house. Located near the Nasu Rindo Lake, it is home to many of the most popular teddy bears, not just in Japanese pop culture but from all around the globe.
Toy Museums are becoming more hands-on institutions offering realistic and relevant information sources about past toys. Due to this, there has been a seismic shift in the overview of the public regarding toys and their presence over the last few centuries. The stories imparted by such toy museums are a unique collection of different communities, races, creeds, and societies.