Spread the love

While Spain is globally known for its Prado Museum and Bilbao´s Guggenheim, there are still quite a few secret museums in Spain not as well established on the tourist track. Or at least not yet. Let me share with you a few unusual Spanish museums you´ve never heard of.

Spanish Landmarks and Museums

As one of the most popular European holiday destinations, Spain has no shortage of alluring national landmarks, otherworldly beautiful landscapes, and charming small towns. The Spanish rich history of royals leaves behind it a huge number of dreamy castles, storybook places, and aesthetically-pleasing Mediterranean gardens.

Today popular Spanish TV shows and international filming locations keep highlighting the beautiful corners of Spain to its viewers all across the globe.

Nevertheless, even such a much-frequented place on every European travel bucket list is full of secret villages, undiscovered places, and unusual museums that might show you a slightly different side of the Iberian Peninsula and its unique cultural heritage.

Let me share with you Top Secret Museums in Spain with an authentic local vibe that I´ve absolutely enjoyed myself. To see the video head to my IG ReelsSecret Spanish Museums.

Must-See Secret Museums in Spain

1. Palau de Maricel / Sitges

sitges places to visit in catalonia
Palau de Maricel – one of the coolest secret museums in Spain

One of the most eye-catching secret museums in Spain is definitely Palau de Maricel in Sitges. I was lucky to visit this place during my Catalonia Road Trip, on the way from Barcelona to Tarragona. The coastal city of Sitges on the weekends is still bustling with life even in the off-season, unlike one of the top Spanish small towns Cadaques.

Palau de Maricel was once a custom-made mansion of the American millionaire and art collector Charles Deering (1852-1927). Even though Deering left his Sitges residence in 1921, taking most of his lavish art collection back to the U.S, this place is still such an eye-candy for art lovers. The museum is full of unique decorations.

Note: Palau de Maricel is not open on a daily basis, you must check the visiting schedule at www.museusdesitges.cat before traveling.

2. muBBla Museo de Bordados de Paso Blanco / Lorca

lorca secret museums in spain

MuBBla is one of my favorite secret museums in Spain, discovered during my recent trip to the Murcia Region. MuBBla (Museo de Bordados de Paso Blanco) is a unique embroidery museum in Lorca. All the exposed hand-made decorations are used in the annual Biblical Processions of Lorca during the Easter Week festivities or La Semana Santa. A museum worker shared with me that for one of the recent creations they´ve had five people working on it for almost five years. You can check more videos at my IG Story Murcia.

Since 2007 the Easter festivities in Lorca were classified as “an international event of tourist interest” and hold candidacy for UNESCO Cultural Heritage declaration.

3. Museu Valencia del Joguet / Ibi

ibi toy secret museums spain

The small town of Ibi near Alicante was the epicenter of the Spanish toys manufacturing industry till the 70s. Ibi can be visited on a day trip from Valencia, Alicante, or Elche.

While globalization forced the closure of local factories in the 70s, Museu Valencia del Joguet still reminds us of Ibi´s industrial past with its unique collection of vintage toys from Spain and Europe. Inside the museum, you can still see behind the glass the industrial hall and machinery, traditionally used in the production of the local toys.

Museu Valencia del Joguet is one of the smallest secret museums in Spain. You can see it all in less than a half hour. Therefore, I recommend combining your visit to Ibi with Xativa, Bocairente, or the Borgia historical sites. For more tips on landmarks in the region also check my blog series Valencia Hidden Gems.

3. Museo de la Alfombra / Orotava

Orotava secret museums in Spain
Museo de la Alfombra / Orotava

Museo de la Alfombra (or The Carpets Museum in English) is located in one of the most colorful places in Spain, the small town of Orotava in Tenerife.

Every year between May and June the locals celebrate the holiday of Corpus Christi by decorating their streets and the main town square with carpets made from sand, flowers, and seeds. On a smaller scale, a few flower carpets can be seen at The Carpets Museum of Orotava all year round.

4. Museo de la Imprenta y de las Artes Graficas / Puig

printing museum valencia spain

Museo de la Imprenta y de las Artes Graficas (or Printing and Graphic Art Museum in English) is located inside the Santa Maria Royal Monastery in Puig. It can be easily visited on a day trip from Valencia.

This Printing Museum is full of ancient editions, wooden presses, and industrial printing machinery.

Not many know that the first book ever printed in Spain – “Trobes en lahors de la Verge Maria” (a collection of 45 poems dedicated to the Virgin Mary) – was made in Valencia in 1474. So the Printing museum is one of the must-see secret museums in Spain as it reveals the evolution of the printing process and editions in the whole country.

5. MACVAC / Villafames

MACVAC (Museu D´Art Contemporrani Vicente Aguilera Cerni) is located inside the XVth century palace in Vilafames, a small town in the province of Castellon. Despite it´s ancient walls the museum´s collection totally focuses on modern art in Spain.

The origins of this secret Spanish museum go back to 1968. Although the opening took place in 1972 with initial 150 art pieces. One of the most famous Spanish painters, Joan Miro, has donated his artwork Golafre to MACVAC.

6. Museo de Ceramica / Manises

The small town of Manises is one of the Valencia Hidden Gems, that can be found near the Airport of Valencia.

While Spain is globally known for its 700-year-old local pottery tradition, Manises used to be one of the cribs of Spanish ceramic art. The region´s connection with pottery is so huge that even the worldwide famous ceramic tile exhibition Cevisama takes place in Valencia every February.

Museo de Ceramica (or The Museum of Ceramics in English) was founded in 1967 and currently houses 5000 ceramic artworks. Inside you can find everything from 14th-century pottery to modern ceramic creations.

After having a look at the Ceramic Museum of Manises you can´t miss Edificio “El Arte”, and Sala de Exposiciones “Els Filtres” (which, by the way, was housing modern ceramic art pieces from Biennal Internacional de Ceramica Manises during my visit). Additionally, you can enroll yourself (booking in advance is required) to take part in one of the local ceramic workshops. I suggest you stop by the local Tourist office (address: av. dels Tramvies 15) to get a map of beautiful ceramic-decorated local buildings.

7. Casa del Arte Mayor de la Seda / Requena

Another one of the secret museums in Spain is Casa del Arte Mayor de la Seda or The Requena House Museum of Silk. I discovered this place by a pure accident while visiting Caves of Requena.

The Requena House Museum of Silk is housed inside the former College of High Silk Art, founded back in 1725. Requena was one of the silk production centers in Valencia and the raw materials were brought from the whole region, even the neighboring La Ribera and Albacete. The final product was distributed in Valencia, Cadiz, Seville, and the Americas.

Inside the Silk Museum of Requena, you´ll find a recreation of a traditional local house alongside with antique factory elements.

If you have some extra time, you can also visit nearby the abandoned village of Cornudilla, one of the mysterious and haunted places in Spain.

8. Museo del Naipe / Oropesa

While Oropesa is popular for top Spanish beaches, this small town in the Province of Castellon is locally known for its charming Old Quarter and Museo del Naipe, one of the secret museums in Spain.

Museo del Naipe is a Playing Card Museum with an impressive collection of 5000 decks of playing cards. The highlight of the exposition is the 14-kg deck, listed in the Guinness Book of World Records. It´s quite an unusual way to follow the evolution of Spanish society through the art of decorating and printing cards. Nevertheless, card decks have always reflected local customs and cultural tastes.

While I´ve already mentioned Oropesa in my Mojacar post while discussing the vacation choices of the Spanish Prime Ministers, let me also remind you that Oropesa used to be a favorite vacation spot of Jose Maria Aznar (1996 -2004).

Pin it: