National Geographic ChannelNat Geo Wild


Come with us to the world's greatest museums to uncover secrets dark and strange.

Discover a crumbling parchment that reveals the true story behind the fall of the Knights Templar. Perform a forensic examination on an Egyptian mummy to solve the murder of a mighty Pharaoh. Find out how the golden statue of a naked woman exposed the sex scandal of a real-life New York Gossip Girl.

In every episode, Museum Secrets travels to one extraordinary museum: the Louvre, the Vatican Museums, London's Natural History Museum, the Royal Ontario Museum in Toronto, the Egyptian Museum in Cairo, and the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York.

Within the walls of each museum, we reveal the stories of 6 irreplaceable treasures: the Mona Lisa, the Sistine Chapel, the golden mask of King Tut, and many more. Museum Secrets probes familiar legends and assumptions, using cutting edge research and technology to investigate the unknown.

Our stories take us beyond the public galleries, into hidden places visitors are rarely allowed to see: a vast storeroom where millions of once-living creatures float in formaldehyde, a noisy workshop where curators in hard-hats piece bones together into skeletons of colossal dinosaurs. When a story moves outside the museum, we follow: into the Louvre's courtyard to recreate a fatal jousting accident, and down into a 50 meter hole in the Egyptian desert to stand inside the tomb of Ramesses the Great.

Along the way, we meet renowned scientists and historians who hunt for clues to baffling mysteries: Were early Britons cannibals? Were 12th Century Islamic pottery vessels early hand grenades? Who broke into the Vatican to deface a masterpiece with hate filled graffiti? Through hands-on experiments, our experts reveal answers for the first time anywhere.

Our most gripping tales are told with the help of those who have a deep personal connection to underlying historical events: At the Louvre we meet the heir to the throne of Napoleon who defends his ancestor's legacy. In London's Natural History Museum, we meet a survivor of the Blitz who is determined to discover why a bomb secreted onto Hitler's plane, failed to explode. At the Metropolitan Museum, we meet a woman who can't look at a certain statue without remembering how it caused her grandfather's brutal murder.

Museum Secrets combines surprising revelations about things we all recognize with amazing revelations about things we've never seen before.


  • Museum Secrets: The MET
    We examine the armor of Henry VIII to discover how he got so fat and crazy, then enter New York high-society to reveal how a nude sculpture led to a brutal murder. Inside a vast Egyptian temple (enclosed within the museum's walls) we search a secret chamber to discover why the temple's statues celebrate the foreign emperor who conquered the land of the Pharaohs. We touch the Holy Grail (or maybe not) to discover what gives religious relics their power, then discover how a museum curator invented modern body armor. And finally, in a lab equipped with the latest NASA technology, we discover how museum scientists use art to solve mysteries of the past and present.
  • Museum Secrets: The ROM
    We unwrap a tiny mummy to find out how an Egyptian baby died 2000 years ago.
  • Museum Secrets: Natural History Museum
    We examine a skull to discover if prehistoric Britains were cannibals, then pull a killer shark from a pool of formaldehyde to find out how it helped swimmers win Olympic gold. We dare a curator to handle a famous gem said to kill all who touch it, then enter a once top-secret room where WWII spymasters created a bomb that came within a hair's-breadth of killing Hitler. We view the remains of Barbary Lions to find out why they spent their lives in the Tower of London, then consider a perfectly preserved specimen of a Dodo, to discover whether the flightless bird’s extinction was really as inevitable as we have been led to believe.
  • Museum Secrets: The Louvre
    Museum Secrets chases the brazen thief who stole the Mona Lisa to find out how she was recovered and how she became so famous.
  • Museum Secrets: Vatican Museums
    Museum Secrets takes viewers behind the scenes to discover the secrets of the Vatican Museum.
  • Museum Secrets: Egyptian Museum
    We search for the lost tomb of Ramesses the Great, then, guided by a mummy's head wounds, we recreate the last moments of an ancient king to discover if he was a brave man or a coward.
  • Museum Secrets: National Archeological Museum of Athens
    Greek ships ram invaders, a dodgy archeologist discovers a golden mask, Alexander the Great sports armour made of cloth, Plato gets high, daredevils descend into a labyrinth, and an ancient gadget predicts the future.
  • Museum Secrets: National Archaeological Museum of Athens
    Greek ships ram invaders, a dodgy archeologist discovers a golden mask, Alexander the Great sports armour made of cloth, Plato gets high, daredevils descend into a labyrinth, and an ancient gadget predicts the future.
  • Museum Secrets
  • Museum Secrets: State Hermitage Museum
    Ancient mummies sport tattoos, Peter the Great pickles dead babies, technology improves Catherine the Great’s sex life, reexamined evidence reveals who really killed Rasputin, curators hide treasures from Hitler, and Stalin’s least favourite painting sells for a million dollars.
  • Museum Secrets: American Museum of Natural History
    African wildlife becomes nature’s nobility, horseshoe crab blood saves human lives, a dinosaur embryo solves a murder mystery, knots in string speak for a dead civilization, spacecraft catches a comet’s tail, and a cryogenic ark preserves the blueprint of life on Earth.
  • Museum Secrets: Imperial War Museum
    Churchill risks his life in the Blitz, a housewife-spy survives Nazi torture, a physicist silences the Kaiser’s artillery, a volunteer cold warrior faces radioactive fallout, top guns defeat Saddam Hussein, and 21st Century soldiers become invisible.
  • Museum Secrets: National Museum of Anthropology, Mexico City
    Ancient athletes kick a severed head, human sacrifices float to the afterlife, crystal skulls channel the dead, hubris sinks a city, and a peasant dress brings down an empire.
  • Museum Secrets: The Pergamon and Neues Museums, Berlin
    Vikings break unbreakable swords, ancient architecture fuels Hitler’s power, a golden hat foretells the future, Queen Nefertiti becomes a superstar.
  • Museum Secrets: The Kunsthistorisches Museum, Vienna
    Inbreeding kills a royal family, silver transmutes into gold, a knight’s armour explodes, falconry inspires a scientific revolution, a dance craze changes history, and a priceless treasure disappears.
  • Museum Secrets: Topkapi Palace Museum, Istanbul
    Muslim invaders besiege a Christian fortress, assassins plot to poison a Sultan, a Harem slave rises to rule an empire, Columbus’ lost map is found, an ancient robot comes to life, and bitter enemies sign the world’s first peace treaty.
  • Museum Secrets: Royal Palace (Madrid)
    A swordsman slays 17 challengers, a clock that runs on witchcraft, the secret of Spain’s wealth, and a 20th Century king who outfoxes a fascist – stories from Madrid’s Royal Palace (Palacio Real).
  • Museum Secrets: Israel Museum (Jerusalem)
    Star Trek's Spock has Jewish origins, brewing Cleopatra’s perfume, a new view of the crucifixion, and a look inside the tomb of Mary – secrets revealed in Jerusalem’s Israel Museum.
  • Museum Secrets: Uffizi Gallery (Florence)
    A 15th Century godfather gets whacked, an ancient Greek fights dirty, a famous artist vanishes, a wild boar gets lucky, an alchemist drinks poison, and a Nazi saves the museum’s collection.
  • Museum Secrets: State Historical Museum (Moscow)
    Lenin’s Rolls-Royce, the shame of Napoleon’s army, Ivan the Terrible’s torture chamber and how to fight a duel - some of the secrets revealed in Moscow’s State Historical Museum.
  • Museum Secrets: Smithsonian Institution (Washington DC)
    Zero fighter planes bomb Pearl Harbor, a pigeon saves soldiers, humanity heads for Mars, a Harley Davidson chopper roars, a surgeon transplants hands, and a banner is spangled with stars.- secrets revealed at Washington’s Smithsonian Institution.
  • Museum Secrets: Chateau Versailles (Versailles)
    A musketeer falls, the wily Marie Antoinette schemes, a strange gun backfires, a King’s mistress is murdered, champagne bubbles, and the spectrum of a star reveals the origin of human life – secrets revealed in France’s magnificent Versailles Palace.
  • Museum Secrets: The Royal Museums (Greenwich)
    Admiral Nelson gets shot, pirates are captured, Captain Bligh commands a lifeboat, Franklin gets lost in the Arctic, lightning strikes at sea, and science defuses naval mines – secrets revealed at London’s National Maritime Museum.
  • Museum Secrets: Bardo Museum (Tunisia)
    Gladiators party, archeologists exhume children, catapults pound Carthage, camel herders whisper, ancient Romans demand water, and Star Wars comes to Tunisia.