The Museum of the Old Arsenal has the largest collection of armaments in Switzerland.
The building has been one of the city’s most notable landmarks for 400 years. It is the only arsenal in Switzerland that has maintained its original character as an armament storage facility even after being converted into a museum. The museum’s rich collection is displayed in its permanent exhibition, from staff weapons to hand-held weapons to firearms. The armour room is the only one of its kind in Switzerland, displaying over 300 suits of armour from the 15th to the 17th century.
Discover a new special exhibition each year.
The museum offers guided tours through both the permanent exhibition and the special exhibition. These can also be booked outside of normal opening hours.
Offers for children and families
The museum offers a variety of ‘hands-on’ areas that let you feel the weight, material and construction of selected artefacts. How does it feel to wear a suit of armour? How heavy is chainmail? What’s it like to hold a halberd?
Object cards can be collected at reception and the relevant items sought and examined in the exhibition.
Alternatively, you can take on a role and do a quiz that will let you see the objects through the eyes of a mercenary, commander, captain’s wife or squire.
Offers for schools
Discover historical objects, step into a role, make connections and reflect on conflict, war and peace: the Museum of the Old Arsenal offers a wide range of teaching opportunities for schools.
The exhibition information is provided in German and French. English information can be provided on a tablet.
Hire for events
The rooms on the ground floor and on the first and third floor can host events ranging from simple aperitifs to full banquets, depending on the number of guests. The technical equipment required for conferences, training courses and meetings is available.
Good to know
Don’t miss the ‘Züghusjoggeli’! As early as the 18th century, arsenals became tourist attractions in many cities. Visitors were often greeted by a special figure – and in Solothurn, this has always been the ‘Züghusjoggeli’. What makes the Züghusjoggeli so special? Lift his visor to find out.