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October 2018. I have to admit that I didn’t know Nanjing had an Olympic Museum until I walked right into it during our explorations of the city’s Youth Olympic Sports Park. It was opened in 2014 to celebrate the second Youth Olympic Games, which Nanjing hosted.
October 2018. The museum ended up making a mockery of my low expectations! Sleek, spacious and highly interactive, the exhibits here are spread out over eight thousand square meters and kick off with a detailed look at the history of The Olympic Games, as well as the evolution of sport in general.
It was nice to reconnect with key sporting moments of my childhood, including striking photographs of Sebastian Coe’s 1500 meters Gold medal in 1984 and video footage of Mary Decker’s infamous trip in the 3000 meters after a clash of legs with Zola Budd.
October 2018. The museum leaves no stone unturned in its quest to provide a meticulous overview of all things Olympic. Divided into four parts, after the Olympic History section you’ll be led through cavernous halls on Nanjing’s connection to the games, as well as The Youth Olympics segment and an Interactive Experience Zone.
October 2018. Over one thousand historical Olympic items can be found here, including magazines, official programs, newspaper articles, sportswear, medals, trophies, stamps, signatures and all manner of commemorative memorabilia. My favorite was probably the display of old mascots, which ranged from the weird and wonderful to the downright awful, not to mention creepy All are quite rare now and worth a pretty penny! The raccoon seen here is called Roni, the mascot of the 1980 Winter Olympic Games in Lake Placid, New York State.
October 2018. They’ve also got an excellent range of Olympic torches. This fearsome looking thing dates back to 1994’s Winter Olympic Games in Lillehammer, Norway.
As an added and highly unexpected bonus I was delighted to catch sigh this antique wooden advertising board on my way out. The 1908 London Olympics were held in London, with the majority of events hosted at White City Stadium, Shepherd’s Bush in my home borough of Hammersmith.
Nanjing’s Olympic Museum is free to enter, but as with most attractions in the city you’ll need to show your ID to get in. It’s located in Nanjing Youth Olympic Sports Park in the southwest of the city and is best accessed by the subway station Yuantong (Line 1 red). Take Exit 4 and it’s a 10-15 minute walk from there.
Today’s travel report is dedicated to my mum Beverley, Happy Birthday!
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