MM Park France – World War 2 Museum in Strasbourg You Must Visit

WW2 plane display at MM Park France

MM Park France opened in 2017 and is one of the largest World War 2 memorabilia museums in Europe. With over 7000 square meters of space, it will seem like the displays go on forever. The ground floor is filled with armored vehicles, boats, a leisure park, and a restaurant. And the upstairs has an extensive uniform and weapon arms display from all over the world. This World War 2 Museum is fun, educational, and interactive, which the whole family will enjoy. With the sensitivity of certain situations from the war, MM Park France does an excellent job of explaining what happened without sensationalizing it. MM Park France is a fantastic WW2 museum that everyone should visit to learn, appreciate, and understand, so we never have to endure something like this in the future.

General Information on MM Park FranceMM Park France - WW2 Museum in Alsace

MM Park France is linked with the Association for the safeguarding of military historical heritage. The museum is open every day from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. My friend, Michelle, her family, and I arrived right at the opening time, and there was already a large group of people waiting to enter the building. The entrance fee is 9€, but there are separate fees and times for the leisure park and restaurant. Depending on the day of the week, the leisure park will open either at 10 or 11 a.m. You can pay to enter the museum in the gift shop right at the entrance.

One thing to not miss before you enter is the bunker display in the parking lot. The long arm rotates, which is very unnerving if you didn’t realize that it was a display. There are also a couple of tanks and displays in the front yard for you to look at while you are waiting to enter the museum. You should plan on spending 3 to 4 hours going through the entire museum. Rotating gun arm and soldier bunker display in the parking lot of MM Park FranceRusted tank outside of MM Park France

Weapons DisplayWorld War 2 Gun displays at MM Park France

Cabinets of guns are what you see the minute you walk into the museum. They line an entire wall while you walk in further to the museum. Besides the wall of guns, there are several displays for long guns and machine guns throughout the museum. I’ve never been a fan of firearms, but it is fascinating to see the evolution of the arms throughout the war and the difference between what the countries used. There is even an interactive long gun that you can sit in and move around that we also tried out.Military WW2 gun and radio displayMachine gun with bullets displayGermany sign with gun displayConner with the long gun

Warehouse of WW2 TanksTanks at MM Park France - WW2 Museum

This area of the museum is so vast that you can lose you the people you came with. Walking into this large warehouse of armored vehicles from Germany, Canada, United States, France, Great Britain, Italy, and USSR is a bit intimidating. It is hard to get a plan for how to see everything. I ended up just walking down the aisles and even had to backtrack a couple of times to not miss something. There are bunkers in the aisles that you can go into and hide, which Mason found out that I can get easily startled. The tanks were in all shapes and sizes, and even some were as is. Where they were displayed with the shell holes in them and showing all the damage that they received during the war. Very sobering to see that these were the areas that the men would be sitting.The WW2 tank display room at MM Park FranceA destroyed tank displayed at MM Park France

WW2 BoatsGerman boat at MM Park France

MM Park France has a replica submarine at the far end of the room with the armored vehicles that is impressive. There is also a 20-meter German star afloat that you can board, visible in the basin of the Kriegsmarine base rebuilt for the museum. I had a difficult time being around all the German displays. Too much bad history, but I understand that the story needs to be told, so it doesn’t get repeated. I didn’t like the fact that I was on a WW2 German boat even if it was a replica. I didn’t stay on it for very long. In the same area. There are also underwater mines that will astound you of the size when you walk next to them. Part of the interactive displays is going below the boat area into an area that resembles being in a submarine. A bit claustrophobic for me, but the kids enjoyed it. Mason on a sub in MM Park France

World War 2 Uniforms from Around the WorldThe upstairs display of WW2 uniforms from countries around the world

World War 2 uniform displays from around the world are amazingly complete. The founder of the museum, Eric Kauffmann, has spent over 20 years collecting WW2 memorabilia to make this the most extensive collection available for people to admire and learn from. There are uniforms from Germany, Bulgaria, United States, France, Great Britain, and USSR. All of the accessories and props are also on display by the uniforms. Whether it is medical equipment, bicycles, or military radios, there are so many things to see in this section of the museum. We spent more than an hour going through this section alone. Soviet uniforms and weapons during World War 2

German WW2 DisplaysAdam checking out the German uniform display at MM Park France

I think that this is the area of the museum that I had the most difficulty going through. Seeing all the Nazi propaganda and uniforms was horrible, but what was worse was seeing the German children’s uniforms. I was at first so surprised that there was so much German memorabilia, but then I had to realize that we were right on the border of Germany. Access to these would be much easier to procure due to the proximity. I don’t think that this section should be removed as it is part of our history that needs to be told and not forgotten. But, it is rough and emotional to go through this area and, even worse, going through the next section.German uniform display at MM Park FranceWW2 German uniform and paraphernalia

Where are they?Display of Jewish prisoners at MM Park France

The most heart-wrenching section of the museum is the section that displays newspaper clippings for Where are they? For the missing Jewish friends and families. Pictures upon pictures of people that were part of the resistance captured and taken to the camps. A lot of these displays are in French, so make sure to have a translator handy. You are lucky if you can read French, but you don’t need to get the gist of what this section of the museum is telling you. So much tragedy in one aisle of MM Park France. Where are the families? - MM Park France

Leisure Park and RestaurantRope course and zip line at MM Park France

After going through all the emotional displays, it is nice to end up in the leisure park and restaurant area of MM Park France. We ordered lunch of hamburgers and fries while Michelle and her son Conner attempted te rope and zip line course. The fee for the obstacle course is 6€. There is also a flight simulator for 7€ and a marksmanship area for 5€. We even saw a birthday party here. I didn’t attempt the rope course, which my friends that were with me in the Czech Republic last year would understand why I didn’t. But, I give props to Michelle and Conner for crushing the course!Conner showing Michelle how easy it is on the climbing wall

Summary

MM Park France is the first World War 2 museum that I’ve been to. Although I have read tons of books on the war, I haven’t visited any of the sites or museums. This next year I hope to rectify that as I learn and experience more from this tragic war. I just visited my first Concentration Camp site in Riga, Latvia (more about that on a future post). And I’m glad my introduction to World War 2 memorabilia museums was with my friend, Michelle, who is in the airforce and her husband, Adam, who is a retired marine. They made this experience even more knowledgeable and special. Thank you!

Even with the heavy tone throughout the museum, it is a family-friendly destination. History shouldn’t be forgotten even if it is terrible; we need to learn from it at all ages. And everybody should be able to visit these places; books don’t cover the emotions of being somewhere in person. I hope you enjoyed this glimpse into the largest WW2 museum in Europe. I certainly did!

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Further Reading

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4 Comments

  • Michele 30November2019 at 11:23 PM Reply

    The Allied uniforms look fascinating. I agree with you, the Nazi section would be difficult, but important, to view. Same with the concentration camp prisoners. Thanks for posting about this.

    • Heather 30November2019 at 11:26 PM Reply

      Your welcome! It was difficult or should I say emotional. But, I think that more people need to be uncomfortable to truly understand what happened.

  • Alastair McKenzie 25November2019 at 10:28 AM Reply

    I thought I knew of all the significant military museums in France, but I’d never heard of this one! Just goes to show!

    • Heather 25November2019 at 10:51 AM Reply

      Now you need to add this one to your list to visit!

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