Just when I thought there was a museum for everything – a ramen noodle museum in Japan and the International Banana Museum in California – I discover yet another unusual ode to something that you probably didn’t think needed an entire building dedicated to it.
Except watermelon. Watermelon deserves its own museum…and now it has one.
If you’re in Beijing and have a few hours to kill, you could learn more about watermelon than you ever thought possible at the China Watermelon Museum. Visitors from all over the globe can come to this watermelon-shaped attraction, which houses over 43,000 square feet of exhibits, showcasing the journey from the origins of the watermelon, from its birthplace in southern Africa to its ascent into space.
The museum features realistic wax models of the many different kinds of watermelons, antique paintings and artwork and more historical artifacts than you can spit a seed at. (Though I’m pretty sure they frown upon spitting seeds at the artifacts.)
Touring the museum will take you about two hours, or more, if you need a translator. Outside in the grounds, various sculptures of people eating watermelon greet visitors as they pass.If you’re like me and wondering why Beijing is a likely location for this museum, it’s because the area just south of Beijing city is one of the largest watermelon-producing regions in the world.
If I ever needed another reason to visit China, this would be it. It would be a dream to see the entire history of watermelon under one roof. I would have to remember that the watermelons are not real, and to eat before going to the museum, as I have a feeling it would make me very, very hungry.
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