Olsztyn has several branches of the Museum of Warmia and Mazury (the Olsztynska Newspaper House, the Museum of Natural History), but the most important seat of the Museum is the castle. Go there and you are bound to get involved in one of these:
- minting coins, climbing the castle tower, night visit to the castle, etc.
- ‘Summer Thursdays with Nicolas Copernicus’ – a face-to-face meeting with the castle’s most prominent resident. This is an educational and entertaining event addressed to both residents of Olsztyn and tourists (July and August). The main attraction of the Thursdays is Nicolas Copernicus, who tells visitors about his discoveries and presents the astronomical instruments he used. The actor who impersonates the astronomer will take you around the Museum but he will also show you some nooks and corners of the castle which are not normally open to the public. Besides, you will have a chance to impersonate a medieval character, for example a coin minter – and produce yourself a commemorative coin called 1 copernicus. Or you can become an old-fashioned printer and print a copy of a document in an antique printing press. You can turn into a medieval burgher trying on historic costumes. After that take a rest and sit in the shaded court of the castle, sipping coffee or chilled soft drinks, watching knights in combat or a show of the Korzunowicz Family Informal Animation Theatre, which presents historic figures connected with our town and the region. Special attractions are prepared for young children, such as a visual art plein air or a treasure hunt. Your attendance in a ‘Thursday at the Castle’ will be commemorated with a specially designed certificate.
Lessons in the museum during the school year – teachers and pupils are invited to a more attractive form of education. The lessons are conducted using interesting tools to keep learners active, e.g. educational games and plays, worksheets, OHPs, multimedia presentations, contests, films. The following subjects are on the offer:
– Regional History – lessons held in the castle (sample topics ‘Mysteries of the Battlefield at Grunwald’, ‘What Peasants Ate and Drank’)
– Nature – lessons held in the Museum of the Natural History (sample topics ‘Animal Trivia’, ‘What Tree Is It?’).
Tickets for an unguided visit to any of these museums include a fee for a lesson in the museum.