The Museum of Human Evolution of Burgos was created as a modern and excellence bid for Junta de Castilla y León, Burgos Town Hall and the Atapuerca Research Team to build a new patrimonial infrastructure, appropriate to the findings of Sierra de Atapuerca Site.

Also, this museum tries to offer a holistic vision of human presence on the Earth and give, in the new theories about human evolution, the rightful place for these exceptional sites located in these mountains of Burgos.

But the MEH is not only an exhibition centre, it is also a highly recognized, innovative and appealing centre of scientific divulgation aimed at all audiences. For this reason, it was provided with a spectacular and symbolic architecture.

Museo de la Evolución Humana
Photo: Museo de la Evolución Humana

On the lower level (-1) of the museum there are original fossils of the oldest human species from Europe which have been discovered in the Atapuerca Sites.  Among the fossils there are archaeological vestiges of four different species of hominids: Homo antecessor (more than one million years), Homo heidelbergensis (600.000 years), Homo neanderthalensis (50.000 years) and Homo sapiens. Also, the visitor can learn what excavation is like, how pieces are washed near the river and how lab work is carried out, all in a unique interactive zone that wil show you exactly how research into our most remote past is done.

The ground floor (0) of the museum is dedicated to Biology and displays a replica of the ship that took Charles Darwin to the Galapagos Islands, the key to the discovery of the species. In the HMS Beagle, the fabolous British Frigate that took the english Scientist Charles Darwin around the word to discover species evolutionary processes. You can visit the ship’s holds, which are full of supplies and travel to England to sneak a peek at Darwin’s very own office.

The next floor is dedicated to cultural evolution and holds a big surprise, the visitor is surrounded by fire inside a great sphere which occupies the ground floor of the museum. Its like a great storm with intense light, as if it were from the torches of a group of aproaching warriors from a space shutrle blasting off. Here the visitor can also learn about the prehistoric art and the Neolitic.

An espace dedicated to Neolitic with reproductions of ceramics of all over the world gives an idea of how was life in this period. There are four big audiovisual pannels that show how prehistoric art was created. Also, the visitor can find reproductions of valious pieces from the Neolitic and several reproductions allow visitors to understand how stone tools have evolved.

In other place some dioramas explain how was the daily life of the hominids during the Paleolhitic age. Finally, reproductions of burials will inmerse the visitor in the world of symbolism and its apparition.