The National Museum of Bosnia and Herzegovina is an interesting place to pass a few hours, especially on a hot, cold or rainy day! Check the opening hours (posted on the sign in my second photo) as they seem to be incorrectly-reported in many guidebooks.
Entrance to the museum is very inexpensive, and once you're inside you have access to a number of buildings housing different exhibits. The archeology department is in the first building, and it houses antiquities from the region, as well as the Sarajevo Haggadah, which is the oldest Sephardic Jewish document in the world. The ethnology department features a few miniature dioramas of the area. When I visited a woman had to manually turn on the power in the building so I could see the exhibits! The natural history gallery is full of taxidermied animals, as expected. In between these buildings is a beautiful garden that attracts an unusual crowd- on my visit I believe some tourists were divining there? There was a y-shaped rod, chanting and prayer involved... definitely not something you see in a museum every day!
The Museum if split into three seperate buildings plus the central botanical gardens:
Each department is housed in a seperate building. It was a Friday morning when I visited, and there were very few customers visiting at that time. It was in fact the 20th Anniversary of the start of the Bosnian War - and I had thought there would be more interest in the exhibits.
If you in town on one of the three days it is actually open you are in for a treat. A bit rundown in parts but one of the very best museums you'll find in the Balkans. Among the museum's highlights are it's botanical garden, famous Jewish Haggadah book from Spain, Turkish home replica, stuffed critters, and a vast array of ancient stones and carvings from well before any of our lifetimes:)
Since the very beginning of its work, the National Museum has developed as a complex cultural and scientific institution nourishing a number of scientific and scholarly disciplines, i.e. history, geography, archeology (prehistoric, ancient and medieval), ethnology, history of art and natural history (biology, geology and mineralogy), partly language, literature, statistics and bibliography. Studies of these disciplines have with time taken the shape of the three present departments, namely the Department of Archeology, Department of Ethnology and Department of Natural History.
National Museum is under restauration many years ago and open only 2 days per week , but it worth a visit.