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Oriental Museum, Durham

4.6
#5 of 17 in Museums in County Durham
History Museum Museum
The Oriental Museum, formerly the Gulbenkian Museum of Oriental Art and Archaeology, is a museum of the University of Durham in England. The museum has a collection of more than 23,500 Chinese, Egyptian, Korean, Japanese and other far east and Asian artefacts. The museum was founded due to the need to house an increasing collection of Oriental artefacts used by the School of Oriental Studies, that were previously housed around the University. The Museum's Chinese and Egyptian collections are 'designated' by the Museums, Libraries and Archives Council (MLA) as being of "national and international importance".HistoryFounded in 1960 to support the University's teaching and research in the Oriental School the collections of the Museum have largely grown through donations and purchases to support cultural studies alongside the teaching of languages. The Museum's initial collection arose from the sale of the antiquities of Algernon Percy, 4th Duke of Northumberland from Anatolia, Mesopotamia and Ancient Egypt. The collection arrived in late 1950 being initially housed in two rooms in Hatfield College. After a fire broke out in 1956 one of the rooms was returned to the college and much of the collection was placed in storage.
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Reviews
TripAdvisor Traveler Rating
246 reviews
Google
4.6
  • Its only small but there are lots of really interesting items on display - organised according to country. The items are beautifully presented on separate floors / or part of floor per country. The 'w...  more »
  • Include this small but fascinating museum in your visit, a little out of the way but with egyptian chinese and other ancient artifacts, is a very easy way to see some enthralling exhibits.make a detou...  more »
  • This museum is not far from the centre of Durham, but feels quite out of the way. It is certainly worth visiting. The exhibits are extremely well displayed, and the whole museum is really well organis...  more »
Google
  • This museum really worth it. Well organised, very didactic and great design.
  • A wide range of artefacts, from past to present. If you think you know everything about the Oriental world, think again. This will prove you wrong.
  • An interesting collection of well-preserved objects from 2000 BCE onwards. There was an excellent temporary photo exhibition when we visited, too. The small range of prepackaged sandwiches and snacks at the entrance was a bonus, too!
  • So much bigger than I expected from the outside. Large range of topics, good for families and even workshops from time to time.
  • A great day out option, specially with little kids!

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Where to stay in Durham

Whether you are on a short break or a long vacation, Durham offers accommodations to suit every taste and budget, including comfortable cottages, friendly B&Bs, and luxurious country retreats. For serious rest and relaxation, head to one of Durham's many spa hotels. The countryside surrounding the city is packed with romantic spa retreats, but if an urban break is what you're looking for, go no farther than the historical town center. Hotels in this area offer numerous leisure facilities and entertainment options, minutes away from Durham's iconic cathedral and castle.
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