Deutsches Optisches Museum

The focus of the Deutsches Optisches Museum is on the natural sciences and technology.
The exhibits teach visitors about the development of optical instruments over the course of five centuries. The museum also shows how Jena became the "City of Optics" in connection with Carl Zeiss, Ernst Abbe and Otto Schott.
The museum's exhibits are divided into twelve different areas and are spread out over three floors. Approximately 2,000 objects are on display.


Discover different exhibits related to the world of optics spread out over 1,200 m2 on three different floors.  >>>


An overview of all prices and important information for individual visitors and groups. >>>

History & Vision

The Optical Museum was founded in June 1922 by the Carl Zeiss Foundation. The exhibit was originally located in the neighboring... >>>


The press room provides an overview of the latest museum news and contacts – all in one place. >>>

»It's my favorite museum. I always enjoy discovering the historic instruments on display whenever I come here. Experiencing this collection of priceless optical devices never ceases to amaze me.«

Pit Schumacher from Bonn, Germany

Our Impressive Collection

The Deutsches Optisches Museum's collection encompasses approximatelyaround 13,000 objects. Around 2,000 of these are on display for visitors in the permanent exhibit. The collection features:


  • Eyeglasses
  • Loupes Magnifying glasses and reading glasses
  • Microscopes
  • Camera lenses and cameras
  • Stereoscopes
  • Telescopes
  • Astronomical instruments
  • Field glasses, binoculars, targeting equipment
  • Measuring instruments
  • Precision measuring instruments
  • Analytical measuring machines
  • Geodetic and photogrammetric instruments
  • Compasses and sundials
  • Globes
  • Optical glass
  • Lights and lanterns
  • Paintings
  • Laterna magica images
  • Peepshow images
  • Artwork
  • Photographs/stereo photographs
  • Holograms
  • Coins and medals
  • 3D objects

The Deutsches Optisches Museum continues to expand its collection. In addition to purchased objects, private gifts also play an important role. The Museum Curator, Mr. Jürgen Hellwig, is responsible for overseeing the scholarly study and care of this wide-ranging collection. Should you have any questions about the objects on display, please contact him. 
Email: · Phone: +49 (0) 3641/ 44 31 64