The renovated In Flanders Fields Museum confronts the visitor with the consequences of The Great War. It confronts young and old with life and death in the Ypres front region. It holds up a mirror and makes us reflect on how we deal with our past and that of all other countries involved. People came from more than fifty different countries and cultures to fight in the war in Flanders. Today, the museum welcomes visitors from all over the world. And confronts them with the universal nature of an Armageddon that occurred 100 years ago.
The In Flanders Fields Museum has always emphasised the personal stories in the larger story of a conflict that co-defined the history of the world. Besides hundreds of authentic objects and images that are presented in an innovative and experience-orientated layout, there is attention for the story of the ‘ordinary people’ in the new museum too. Lifelike characters and interactive installations confront the contemporary visitor with his/her peers in the war, a century ago.
To increase the experience even more, every visitor receives a personal ‘poppy’ bracelet on arrival. The microchip in the bracelet automatically sets the language choice and enables the visitor to discover 4 personal stories throughout the permanent exhibition.
The In Flanders Fields Museum has a high reputation to uphold for multimedia presentation methods. The new scenography also gives ample attention to the most recent museum applications. Touch screens, the interactive poppy bracelet, video projection, soundscapes... everything contributes to an intense experience and an authentic submersion in front life.
The museum goes further than a purely historical or military narration of the facts. In addition to historical (practical) objects, diary passages and artefacts, there is also room for personal impressions of soldiers and artists, both from the early 20th century and contemporary: poets, authors, painters, photographers and sculptors. Their artistic interpretation always provides a personal and touching confrontation with war.., but also with the hope for peace.
The new scenography of the museum gives a lot of attention to the current landscape as one of the last tangible witnesses of the war history. The museum path from now on also enables you to visit the bell tower. After climbing the 231 steps you are rewarded with an exceptional view of the city and the surrounding battlefields.
The visit of the bell tower is optional and costs 2 EUR extra.
If you also want to explore the city and the surrounding battlefi elds at ground level, you will find all the info you need at the In Flanders Fields Museum. There is a new tourism centre with a regional exhibition about Ypres and the Westhoek.
The museum itself presents the historical story of the First World War in the West Flanders front region. The completely new permanent exhibition talks about the invasion of Belgium and the first months of the movement war, the four years’ trench war in the Westhoek - from the beach of Nieuwpoort to the Leie in Armentières - about the end of the war and the permanent remembrance since. After a visit to the museum you can get active with one of the many thematic walks, cycle trips or car circuits.