Discover Iceland's Unique Attraction: The Icelandic Phallological (Penis) Museum

Delve into the intriguing world of the Penis Museum in Iceland, where curiosity meets education. Discover the diverse collection, learn about the biology of different species, and embark on a unique cultural adventure like no other.

penis museum

blog authorBy Johanna Sigurðardóttir shield verificationVerified Expert

Have you ever heard about Iceland's most eyebrow-raising attraction, the Penis Museum in Iceland? Yep, you read that right! Nestled in the heart of Reykjavik, the Icelandic Phallological Museum (or, as it's more casually known, the ‘Dick Museum’) is a place that piques curiosity and wonder.

Now, you might be thinking, 'What's in store for me at a museum dedicated to penises?' Well, buckle up because we're about to take you on a journey through this unique museum, sharing insights only someone with intimate knowledge of Iceland could offer. 

Whether you're here for a giggle or genuinely fascinated by the phallological wonders of the animal kingdom, this blog has got you covered. Let's dive into what makes this museum a must-visit spot in Iceland, shall we?

A Journey Through the Penis Museum's Unique Collection

Prepare to be taken on an extraordinary tour unlike any other. The Icelandic Phallological Museum boasts an array of specimens that are both astonishing in diversity and fascinating in detail. From the majestic to the minuscule, every exhibit offers a unique glimpse into the natural world through a lens you likely haven't looked through before.

The Icelandic Phallological Museum: A Pioneer in the Study of Penile Anatomy

The tale of the Icelandic Phallological Museum starts with an unusual gift that sparked a grand vision. In 1997, after a long and distinguished career in education spanning 37 years as a teacher and principal at Reykjavík's Hamrahlid College, Sigurður Hjartarson took an extraordinary leap. 

His collection, which began in 1974 with a bull's penis—which was humorously intended as a cattle whip—grew into something beyond the confines of ordinary academic interest. Sigurður's fascination with phallology took off from this quirky starting point, accumulating donations from whalers, fishermen, and even from animals found stranded after the 1986 global commercial whaling ban. 

The museum's foundation in Reykjavík was facilitated by a grant from the city council, opening its doors with an initial collection of 62 specimens. Despite initial skepticism from some quarters of the community, worried it might veer towards the salacious rather than the scientific, the museum quickly garnered a reputation for being a genuinely educational and engaging venue, pulling in 5,200 visitors by 2003.

The Backstory and Evolution of the Icelandic Phallological Museum

Ever wonder how a museum dedicated entirely to penises came to be? It's a tale of curiosity turned cultural landmark.

The Icelandic Phallological Museum began with one man's peculiar passion and evolved into a renowned repository of phallic specimens.

Join us as we peel back the layers of this unique museum's origins and evolution.

The Founding Story of Sigurður Hjartarson: The Museum's Passionate Curator

You might wonder how one turns a peculiar fascination into the world's most unique collection. Well, meet Sigurður Hjartarson, the visionary behind the Icelandic Phallological Museum, home to the largest collection of penises. 

Sigurður's unexpectedly life-altering moment happened back in 1974, thanks to what many would consider an odd gift—a bull's penis pizzle. Yes, you read that right! Initially received as a playful jest from his teaching staff, this peculiar present sparked a flame of curiosity that eventually illuminated the unexplored corridors of phallology. 

Fast forward to 1997, and the Icelandic Phallological Museum opened its doors, attracting 5000 visitors per year after 6 years of operation.

The Museum's Expansion and Transformation

The Penis Museum has undergone a fascinating metamorphosis over the years, emblematic of its enduring allure and expanding appeal. A pivotal moment arrived with the retirement of Sigurður Hjartarson, prompting a relocation to Húsavík, one of the top places to go whale watching in Iceland. This move, though temporary, signified a new chapter in the museum's storied history.

The Húsavík years, extending until 2011, represent an era of growth and increasing public interest despite initial skepticism from local residents. Concerns were aired about the museum bordering on the pornographic rather than the scientific, a perspective swiftly countered by the museum's educational thrust and its burgeoning visitor numbers. 

Reflecting on 2011, a particularly notable year, the museum welcomed over 12,000 visitors, 60% of whom were unsurprisingly women, underscoring the broadening appeal and debunking myths about its audience. 

In 2011, the museum of penises moved back to Reykjavík, this time permanently and as the proud culmination of 36 years of passion and hard work from its founder. The museum recently moved to a new location in Hafnartorg, which is three times larger than its previous location. 

Exploring the Diverse Range of Phallic Specimens

Dive into the intriguing world of the Penis Museum, affectionately known to some as the 'dick museum' or 'phallus museum,' and you'll discover a treasure trove of the natural world's most private wonders. 

This unique museum doesn't shy away from showcasing the vast diversity of nature's designs, making it a fascinating destination for anyone intrigued by the animal kingdom's varied members. Here's a peek into the collection of penises on display:

  • World's Largest Collection: Boasting over 300 penises from more than 100 species of mammals, including 280 specimens from 93 species of animals.
  • A Spectrum of Species: From the majestic whales to the humble seals, and even a nod to the mythical with penises of elves and trolls, the museum covers it all.
  • Human Contributions: Not just limited to the animal kingdom, the collection includes human testicles, a foreskin, and even artful sculptures based on the Iceland men's national handball team.
  • Cultural Celebrations: The museum explores the phallus's diverse forms and meanings across cultures, species, and identities, offering insights into how it's revered, depicted, and understood globally.
  • Gargantuan Marvels: The museum houses the awe-inspiring "baculum of a blue whale," the largest exhibit in the collection, measuring an impressive 170 cm (67 in) and weighing 70 kilograms (150 lb). This exhibit alone showcases the museum's dedication to covering the full spectrum of the animal kingdom.
  • Tiny Wonders: At the other end of the scale, the baculum of a hamster stands as the museum's tiniest specimen. Measuring a mere 2 mm (0.7 in), this piece requires a magnifying glass for visitors to appreciate its intricate details.

Fascinating Facts About The Penis Museum in Iceland

Prepare to be intrigued by the eclectic and educational offerings of the Penis Museum. This establishment isn't just about the visual spectacle; it's an immersive educational experience. Here's what sets it apart:

Comprehensive Anatomy Exhibit

The museum doesn't just stop at phallic specimens. It dives deeper into the anatomy, featuring an array of parts like:

  • Testicles
  • Sperm glands
  • Scrotum skins
  • Penile bones
  • Foreskins

This holistic approach provides a well-rounded educational experience.

Art Meets Anatomy 

Among its unique exhibits are practical items turned art pieces, including lampshades, walking sticks, and whips, all crafted from gonads. Additionally, the museum proudly displays 15 silver sculptures, each based on the genitalia of the Icelandic handball team, blending sport, art, and science in a strikingly creative manner.

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