Playing in the Past
From May 1 to the end of October, children and their families can make use of an attractive outdoor play area covering more than 700 square meters.
Guided by the concept "How We Used to Play," experts provide hands-on learning for children big and small, with a chance to try out long-forgotten games from great-grandmother's day. What child remembers today how to use a whipping top, chase a hoop, or play all the different versions of marbles?
Kids can also try out historical amusements like "Russian Skittles" and classic games involving moving among various boxes. They can try out their skills on a double climbing net or balance bars, watch wood balls roll along a big ball track made of oak trunks, or explore a hedge labyrinth – where they may meet Tim, the boy with the golden ball. Funhouse mirrors, a big kaleidoscope, and a changeable multicolored backdrop offer interesting visual effects. Panels with texts and illustrations on a thoroughly refurbished historic poster pillar explain the origin and rules of old games and toys.
Marveling in the Dark
The Museum's "Shadowland" exhibit entices visitors into the late medieval vaulted cellar. Guided tours lasting about half an hour provide first-hand experience of how our fascination about playing with light and shadow has led to a vast range of optical toys: Projections cast magical shadows on the walls, 3-D glasses provide an unusual perspective on various toys from the Museum's collection, teddy bears break dance, action-packed camera work from Willy Bogner's "Ski to the Max" film carries visitors away into the world of fast-moving images of ice and snow, and much, much more.
In the Museum's snug and hospitable courtyard, with its typical Nuremberg balustrade gallery, the La Kritz museum café offers an inviting place to linger during the summer months, with coffee, cake, cold beverages and other snacks. Horst Dornberger, the café's operator since 2011, is always happy to meet Toy Museum visitors.
Out of consideration for the neighbors, the playground is not open between 1 and 3 on Sunday and holiday afternoons. Guided tours through Shadowland are held weekend afternoons, every hour from 12 to 3.
There is no additional charge to Museum visitors for visiting the outdoor play area and Shadowland.
You do not need to pay Museum admission to visit the café. But please let the ticket desk staffer know you are only going to the café when you come in.