Photo Credit: Wikimedia Commons
Inside Iceland's Penis Museum: The Largest In The World
Iceland is famous for its unique geography, known as the Land of Fire and Ice because of its volcanoes and glaciers. However, Iceland is also home to one of the world’s most unusual attractions— The Icelandic Phallological Museum aka the penis musuem.
Yes, there’s a penis museum in Iceland.
Located in Reykjavík, the museum houses the largest collection in the world, with a variety of carefully collected specimens of hundreds of different animals.
Inside the Penis museum, you can see penises and penile parts of all shapes and sizes, from a huge variety of mammals, from whales to bears, seals to cats or even rats. One of the most impressive exhibited pieces is the phallus of a sperm whale, the museum’s largest specimen.
Preserved in formaldehyde and presented inside a huge acrylic tube at the entrance to the museum, the penis of this huge cetacean is 5’7” tall and weighs 165 lbs.
According to Hjortur Sigurdsson, a former logistics manager who runs the museum, the Falological Museum is anything but silent, as visitors giggle as they take in the 286 biological specimens on display.
“It’s a good place to joke and have a good time. You can educate yourself and at the same time have some fun,” he told AFP.
Hjortur’s father, Sigurdur Hjartarson, a historian who has worked as a teacher for 37 years, opened the museum in 1997, starting with just 62 specimens.
“It all started as a joke. My dad just had fun collecting, doing something that no one else had done before. He always said, ‘someone had to do this.”
By 1980, Hjartarson had already collected 13 specimens, nine of them from land mammals and four from whales. Within a decade, that number increased to 34.
“It’s been a bit taboo, especially in relation to the human organ, but if you say ‘penis’, it attracts people,” said the administrator. “And, of course, we are the only museum in the world collecting biological organs.”
Children are some of his favorite visitors because of their desire to learn about the field of phalology, the scientific study of the penis.
“A lot of kids come here during school hours and have a lot of fun,” Sigurdsson said. “They’re not afraid to ask questions like: why this shape? And this size?”
Visitors can compare the color, size and shape of a rat’s tiny penis to the gigantic organ of a sperm whale, he explains. But it is also possible to learn the different ways animals use their phalluses.
“Whales, for example, have a retractable muscle. They don’t really need an erection. It’s very different from us.”
Tourists’ interest in the museum has grown over the years, and in 2015 the site registered 12,000 visitors, in a nation best known for its breathtaking scenery.