German Tank Museum

Visit The German Tank Museum, Munster: All You Need To Know

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The German Tank Museum, or Deutsches Panzermuseum Munster, is an absolute treasure trove of military armoured vehicles and artefacts from the First World War to the present. As my son is a huge military history fan, he begged me to take him to the town of Munster on our first visit to Hamburg. I’ll admit that I wasn’t expecting to enjoy the visit as much as I did! 

Even if you’ve never been remotely interested in tanks, I’m confident you’ll find the tank museum in Germany fascinating!

While there are about 150 tanks, assault guns and other vehicles from around the world, the highlight of the tank museum in Munster is the collection of 40 Second World War tanks in the heart of the exhibition.

In this article, I’m sharing exactly what you need to know about visiting this impressive armoured vehicle museum, including how to get there and what to see and do on your trip to this impressive German war museum site.

German Tank Museum – What to Know Before You Go

How to get to the Deutsches Panzermuseum

Address: Hans-Krüger-Straße 33, 29633 Munster -not to be confused with Münster (Muenster) in North Rhine-Westphalia.

By car: 60 minutes from Hamburg or 90 minutes from Hannover, then 15 km from the Soltau-Ost exit on the Autobahn A7.

The German Tank Museum Munster Germany
Leopard tank in the background. Photos © Grey Globetrotters

By Train to Munster (Örtze) station

  • From Bremen: 90 minutes
  • From Hamburg or Hannover: Around two hours.
  • From Berlin: At least three hours.

We travelled by train from Hamburg. It’s a very straightforward journey, with trains running every other hour.

The Deutsches Panzermuseum is a pleasant one-mile walk (1.5 km) from Munster (Örtze) station.

Top Tip: Munster (Örtze) station is tiny! There are no facilities, except for toilets. There’s not even a bench to sit on, so make sure to stock up on any drinks/snacks you need before you travel.

Panzer I tank. The German Tank Museum Munster Germany
Panzer I tank – one of the German tanks from early WW2 at the tank museum in Germany

Opening Hours

  • June to September: Daily from 10:00 to 18:00
  • October to May: Closed on Mondays, except for national holidays. Closed from mid-December to early January.

If you visit the tank museum in Munster during the cooler months, don’t forget a warm coat! The 7,500 square metres of exhibition halls are draughty and unheated.

The German Tank Museum Munster Germany. Sturmpanzerwagen A7V from WWI
Sturmpanzerwagen A7V – a German First World War tank in the Panzer Museum

Tickets

Admission: €8 for adults and €4 for children (Under 5s go free). A family ticket is €15. Check availability here.

Top Tip: Free audio guides are available (you may need to ask for one). If you don’t speak German, these guides are super helpful, as some of the exhibits don’t have a description in English.

A modest museum shop has a small selection of souvenirs, but the best souvenirs will be your own photos (unless you really want a book about tanks – in German).

While there’s a pleasant picnic area, the selection of drinks and snacks for sale is very basic – don’t forget to pack your own lunch!

About the Panzermuseum

The exhibition includes tanks and other large military vehicles, cannons and motorcycles, a small selection of uniforms, hand weapons, military orders/awards and toys.

Early military equipment. The German Tank Museum Munster Germany

While the German tank museum is enormous, the collection on display represents only a tiny fraction of the museum’s complete collection of 6,000 items!

Visiting the German Tank Museum Munster Germany. Panzerkampfwagen III
The teen boy LOVED this Panzerkampfwagen III.

The German Tank Museum deals sensitively with war and doesn’t shy away from the human cost of using tanks in battle. Rather than glorifying war, the museum focuses on how the technology of tanks has developed over the years.

Germany has few military museums, and this superb collection of military vehicles is a hidden gem. It’s well worth the trek to visit.

Up close to tanks at the Deutsches Panzermuseum
Loving getting close to the tanks at the Tank Museum in Germany

The museum is spotlessly clean and well-ordered, with most displays in chronological order. While most of the tanks are German models, these are complemented by armoured vehicles from other countries.

Detailed descriptions in German and English accompany many of the exhibits, and the audio guide provides lots of extra information, making it easy to understand the exhibition.

The first German tank, Wotan at The German Tank Museum Munster Germany
Wotan – theSturmpanzerwagen A7V from WWI

There is a copy of the first German tank, Wotan, plus a video of German engineers experimenting with captured British tanks.

What to See and Do at the German Tank Museum

Second World War Tanks in the Munster Tank Museum

Tanks were vital equipment in the Second World War, and they were mass manufactured at speed by each country involved in the war.

One of the reasons that Germany lost the war was because they could not manufacture tanks as fast as Russia and America, especially in the last year of the war.

Panther Tank at the German Tank Museum
Panther tank

The display of tanks from the Second World War is impressive, and there are extra audiovisual displays to explain more about how these tanks were made and used.

Elements of War Exhibition

After the Second World War hall, don’t miss the small but interesting “Elements of War” exhibition. The uniforms, medals and decorations, smaller weapons, and toys in this area are poignant reminders of the impact of war on real people.

Don’t Miss: The rare Nazi-era medals, including German Crosses.

Inside the Sturmpanzerwagen A7V at the Deutsches Panzermuseum (German Tank Museum)
Inside the Sturmpanzerwagen A7V

Tanks from the Cold War

The next exhibition includes about 40 tanks from the Cold War Period – alongside some of the support vehicles needed to keep the tanks in full working order. Cut-out models of some tanks – once used for training purposes – show how these vehicles were built.

Part of the vast exhibition hall at the German Tank Museum
Part of the vast exhibition hall at the German Tank Museum.

Don’t miss the exhibition of tanks from East and West Germany:

  • The Bundeswehr (federal defence force of West Germany) tanks were based on American designs
  • The Volksarmee (People’s Army – East Germany) had Soviet-designed tanks

There’s also an exhibition of armoured vehicles used for air defence systems.

The enormous bridge laying vehicle - the Brückenlegepanzer M48 at the German tank museum in Munster
The enormous bridge-laying vehicle – the Brückenlegepanzer M48 in the museum grounds

We found even more tanks are on display in the outdoor area of the museum, including a massive bridge-building vehicle and a Leopard I tank that visitors can climb on and sit inside.

Image of the Sturmpanzer VI or Sturmtiger "Assault Tiger" at the German Tank Museum Munster, Germany
Sturmpanzer VI or Sturmtiger “Assault Tiger” at the German Tank Museum Munster

FAQs: The Munster Tank Museum

What is the largest tank museum in the world?

Kubinka Tank Museum in Russia is the largest tank museum in the world.

What is the most famous tank in Germany?

The Tiger I tank is the most famous German tank; however, the Panzer III was the most produced tank in Germany

What tank museum has the most tanks?

Kubinka Tank Museum in Russia has the most tanks, with over 50 in exhibits; however, hundreds of tanks are in store.

Is there a Maus in Bovington tank museum?

No, you would need to visit the Kubinka tank museum to see a Maus tank, as only two Maus tanks were ever produced.

Where is Tank Graveyard Germany?

Sogel in Lower Saxony is an old firing range used in the Cold War, where tanks were used as targets (for other tanks).

Where is the best tank museum?

This would depend on your interest and what you hope to see or experience. The best solution for tank enthusiasts is to visit them all!

What was the most feared German Tank in World War II?

The imposing Tiger I was a fearsome machine that was the most feared tank in WWII.

Wrap Up – How to Visit the German Tank Museum

As you can see, the German Tank Museum at Munster is a fascinating armoured fighting vehicle museum. It’s the perfect place to visit to delve deep into military history to understand more about some of the major conflicts of the 20th century.

The Tank Museum in Germany is the ideal quirky museum for a day trip from Hamburg – even if you only visit for a short break!

Love military history and visiting tank collections? You might also enjoy:

If you want to see the German “super heavy” tank, known as the Mouse (Panzerkampfwagen VIII Maus), you’ll have to travel to Kubinka, the Russian Tank Museum (the biggest tank museum in the world).

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