In a surprise shakeup to the release of Modular Buildings, the latest set from the collection, 10326 Natural History Museum will release on 1 December 2023, instead of its traditional release slot on the 1st of January.
The LEGO Modular Natural History Museum is also unique in other ways; it’s the biggest LEGO Modular ever with 4,014 pieces, and it’s only the second Modular after Assembly Square to occupy a 48-stud wide baseplate, and this one if slightly more exceptional because it’s just the one building.
While many LEGO Modular Fans were ecstatic to finally get a Modular dedicated to learning, science and history, the Olive Green colour scheme was quite a divisive choice, and you either fall into the hate-it, or love-it camp.
There’s a lot to unpack with the set, let’s jump into this detailed review and tour of the 10326 Natural History Museum modular building – I hope you find this educational!
See below for regional pricing and links, where preorders are now open worldwide
- 10326 Natural History Museum [US] – US$299.99
- 10326 Natural History Museum [AUS] – AU$449.99
- 10326 Natural History Museum [UK] – £259.99
- 10326 Natural History Museum [EU] – €299.99
- 10326 Natural History Museum [CA] – CAD$389.99
Who is this set for? LEGO Modular Building fans wanting to further expand their Street with a grand institution dedicated to history and science. Also those that like the colour Olive.
If you’re thinking of ordering the LEGO Natural History Museum modular, please consider using these affiliate links as I may receive a small commission with each purchase that helps support the work I do here on the blog.
Special thanks to LEGO for sending this set for this review!
10326 Natural History Museum Set Details
Name: Natural History Museum
Set Number: 10326
Pieces: 4,014 pieces
Price: US$299.99 / AU$449.99 / £259.99 / €299.99
Exclusive to: LEGO.com / LEGO Stores
Release Date: 1 December 2023
LEGO Designer: Chris McVeigh @powerpig
Unboxing and Instruction Manuals
Only one instruction manual is included with the set, which I found kinda annoying as I really would’ve liked at least two booklets for a set that’s the biggest Modular Building set so far.
I enjoy tackling large builds with my wife, and I really would’ve liked to share the build – I understand that you can of course access the instructions digitally or through the Builder App, but I do prefer printed manuals for the build experience.
The Instructions feature a lovely biography on the set designer, Chris McVeigh (you might know him as @powerpig on Instagram). It’s been a busy year for Chris, as he also worked on the incredible 21060 Himeji Castle, 10314 Dried Flower Centerpiece and now this.
It’s also his second LEGO Modular Building design – his first was 10278 Police Station.
The second page includes an introduction to to Natural History Museum, and introduces the exhibits, and also the story weaved into the set, which involves a mischievous puppy in pursuit of a tasty treat. What better place than the museum to find some bones to chew on!
Oh and like all Modular Buildings, no stickers are included in the set, and they will never be included. The Palace Cinema was the first and last time!
We do get these lovely plastic banners which feature some gorgeous graphic design work and colours.
Two baseplates are included, a standard 32×32 grey baseplate and a 16×32 baseplate which expands the footprint to 48-studs wide.
These are the new LEGO Baseplates, with this marking etched into the corners.
LEGO Modular Museum Minifigures
The LEGO Modular Natural History Museum comes with a cast of 7 characters. There is a window cleaner, 3 visitors, 2 museum staff and the Museum Curator, whom you might remember from a certain LEGO 1990s theme. More on that later.
Here are the 3 guests, an elderly woman who enjoys feeding the pigeons, a female with a prosthetic leg and a young boy. I really like the young boy’s “full of wonder” expression.
Here’s their back prints and alternate faces.
It’s really nice to see the minifigure Prosthetic Leg make a return in such a momentous set like a Modular Building. It was previously only included in 60347 Grocery Store from 2022, and this will ensure that such an important element gets in the hands of thousands of LEGO fans who will be picking up this set on the 1st of December.
These two museum staff feature new minifigure torsos, which look great. I really like the sweater, tie and shirt combo, as well as the nametag. Also, I love the male’s face print with a highly impressive and well-maintained moustache.
Here’s their back prints and alternate faces, both of whom have a shocked expression.
And last but not least, we have the Curator and the Window Cleaner. There are a lot of windows to clean in the Museum, which keeps the cleaner (and his squeegee) busy.
The Curator has a friendly face, neatly trimmed beard and wears a checked sportscoat, red bowtie and his nametag on a lanyard.
The Curator is the most interesting minifigure in this set, and a welcome nod to the LEGO Adventurers theme, as he could pass for either Dr. Articus Kilroy, or his twin, Dr. Charles Lightning, Johnny Thunder’s uncle!
I am loving LEGO’s unabashedness of re-introducing or featuring callbacks to so many beloved themes, and here is the Curator side by side with the LEGO Adventurers person.
It’s completely conceivable that after his Adventurers with Johnny Thunder, he settle down in the Modular City to take up a permanent position at the Natural History Museum.
LEGO Adventurers fans will be absolutely delighted by the Curator.
Building Experience and the Completed Model
At 4,014 pieces, this is the biggest Modular Building yet, and there’s plenty of elements here to keep you occupied, as you flit between the flooring, building little nifty exhibits and stacking walls and walls of Olive Green elements together.
For a building with such a wide frontage, there are plenty of sections with plenty of repetition, and as is the case with the modern modular building experience, much of it is now on the inside as you populate the various exhibits.
As is the case with the Police Station, designer Chris Mcveigh has hidden some surprises underneath the build, these bones and a dig site are sealed off so you can’t access them, but I like that they’re there.
The facade of the Museum wasn’t necessarily the highlight of the build for me, which is odd as building elaborate facades is usually the main course of modular buildings.
I do really like the two white columns, and the truss which mimic the look of marble, with clear greco-roman influences, but otherwise, the facade of the building itself is quite plain, with a static., blocky shape.
What really surprised me was how much I enjoyed building the roof, which is where all the clever and satisfying build techniques are housed. The Roof is inspired by European architecture and features two large skylights that flood the twin atriums with natural light, but I really loved all the cool techniques that brought the roof to life, including the curator’s study which is housed within the central dome.
Usually, Modular Building Roofs are an afterthought, but this one felt like a lot of thought was placed into it, which I enjoyed.
LEGO Natural History Museum Facade
Here’s the completed model, which has quite a muted colour tone thanks to the Olive Green colour scheme. I’m a fan of the Olive, and while I don’t think it necessarily evokes a Museum Vibe, it does make the pillars, roof and cherry blossom tree pop, and I just like how subtle it looks.
It’s also never been used in the Modular Street, so I appreciate the new colour option.
No new elements are introduced, but we get plenty of recolours and a generous serving of Olive Green elements!
Taking inspiration from his Himeji Castle set, released in August 2023, a new tree design is born here, with a really lush Cherry Blossom tree out the front. We don’t usually get elaborate trees in Modular sets, but I really enjoy this slice of nature that helps introduce some greenery into the urban Modular Street.
I like how different it looks to the Cherry Blossoms we got from 10315 Tranquil Garden.
These pillars and the truss are also really lovely, grand and befit such an institution as a Natural History Museum.
Two Banners advertising the exhibits in the museum hang outside. There’s a twin focus with what the Museum curates – a focus on history with the Brachiosaurus Skeleton being one of the chief attractions, but also a look into the future, as the minifigures who live on the modular street look to outer space and what their future holds.
I really like the flower beds, and these two statues that stand guard outside the museum.
And here’s a look at the entrance, which also features a printed tile with the word Museum on it.
Here’s a look at the back, which is quite plain, and only had 3 studs of space, but we can see the naughty puppy striking gold, finding a very large bone in the bin.
And here are some photos of the roof, which has a door to access it, the aforemention Curator’s study, and even small details like some cherry blossom petals, and some gargoyles.
LEGO Natural History Museum Interiors and Exhibits
Now let’s take a look at the interiors of the Modular Museum! You walk up the stairs and enter the double doors.
Where you’re greeted by the gift shop, featuring a cash register and plenty of pamphlets and souvenirs you can buy to help the museum.
Here’s the layout of the Ground Floor which is devoted to the past, and Natural History.
In one wing, we have exhibits dedicated to Earth Sciences, with gems, minerals and rocks, as well as a piece on the Earth’s crust, and even a model volcano.
There are some Earthen ceramics on display, but it looks like an oopsy happened, and one of them has been smashed, much to the shock of the Museum Staff.
On the other wing, we have the key attraction of the museum, a Brachiosaurus Skeleton! It’s so tall that its head and neck extend to the first floor.
Here’s a closer look at the LEGO Brachiosaurus skeleton, which has a pedestal that you can easily remove to admire it.
I really like the use of white bananas for its ribcage.
Unfortunately, it’s quite small for a Brachiosaurus! Here it is next to an actual LEGO Brachiosaurus from the LEGO Jurassic Park set. It might be a juvenile?
It’s also not to scale with the LEGO Ideas Dinosaur Fossils set, so yeah, it might be a Baby Brachiosaurus!
Other exhibits in this prehistoric section include some dinosaur eggs.
There’s even an Ammonite fossil, and a skull of what seems to be a Sabertooth Tiger!
I will never not find LEGO toilets funny, and I especially love that it’s situated next door to a small laboratory. Where someone is using a microscope to look at germs. Because there’s no sink.
Let’s take the staircase up. Also on that note, how good is this Staircase design which use triangular bricks placed at an angle for the design!
The first floor features a lot more space, thanks to the dual atrium design which I find really interesting. It’s not densely packed with stuff which I find realistic and practical, as it allows the exhibits here to really stand out.
It wouldn’t be a History Museum without a nod to Historical LEGO themes, and I love this section which pays homage to LEGO Pirates, Forestmen and even Castle with the nods to 40567 Forest Hideout and of course, the iconic 375 Yellow Castle.
I’m really hoping that the Pirate Ship is a nod to the Imperial Flagship, which I hope makes a return one day.
But wait, there’s more! As the minifigures look to the future and space, we also have a microscale LEGO Classic Space Moonbase here. There’s a Galaxy Explorer, Moon Base, Landing Pad and even a Buggy!
Really hoping this is an Easter Egg for an eventual Moonbase. We need somewhere to park our 10497 Galaxy Explorer!
There’s also a large model of Earth, complete with a rocket flying across it ala Classic Space logo, and a Rocket on a Launchpad exhibit next to it.
LEGO is really not subtle in signalling that there’s going to be plenty of SPACE stuff coming, or in the works as they like to do with these breadcrumbs they drop all over their sets.
And the huge attraction on the first floor is this solar system, which just looks awesome with all the colours planets. I really liked how Chris built Saturn on an angle, as the ringed planet does tilt on its axis!
As mentioned, the Brachiosaurus Skeleton is so tall it peeks into the first floor atrium!
Before we head up, there’s a telescope and an Asteroid model.
Walking up into the roof, we get to the final room in the building, the Curator’s study.
Here’s a look at the Curator busy at work.
You can easily pull out one of the wall sections for easy access. We learn that the Curator also writes documentaries, and he has two awards on show here. One of his documentaries was even screened in the Palace Cinema – Mystery of the Monorail?
LEGO Natural History Museum on the Modular Street
As is the case with all new Modular Buildings, the ultimate question is how will it look like in your Modular Street?
With its wider than usual facade, and duller Olive colour scheme, will it look good next to some of the recent releases?
Here’s the LEGO Modular Natural History Museum alongside some of its contemporary peers, the Jazz Club, Police Station and Boutique Hotel.
As you can immediately see, the wide frontage does give it a very powerful and unique look, which is counter-balanced by the Olive Green colour scheme, which doesn’t look as bright, or vibrant as the other recent buildings in the series.
For long-time Modular fans who have a lot of buildings on their street, I really think that it’s going to be a challenge to not only find space for it, especially as its wider than usual, but also to ensure that the Olive Green colour scheme works.
I actually think sandwiching it between the Boutique Hotel and Sanctum Sanctorum works kinda well, as it keeps it within the green family as is slightly easier on the eyes as they’re also about the same height.
But that’s just me.
What I liked:
- Really fascinating interiors and exhibits filled with references
- Brachiosaurus and Cherry Blossom Tree are really attracticve
- Museum Curator minifigure
- You can build a Modular or ask for one for Christmas!
- It’s an institution of education, science and history
What I didn’t like:
- The Olive Green might not be for everyone
- Design and shape is very blocky and flat
- Facade seems safe and doesn’t take enough risks
When you think of a Modular Natural History Museum, your mind instantly races to imagine what it could look like, how it could replicate some of the best known institutions in the world (think London or New York), and how iconic their architecture is.
10326 Natural History Museum tries to go out on its own, bringing a dominating Olive Green colour scheme to the Modular Street, which I think is incredibly divisive, mostly because Olive is such a polarising colour.
When I think of Olive Green, I think of it as the colour of Cigarette Packaging. The Australian government was the first to introduce Cigarettes in standardised olive green packaging, and the colour was chosen because it was the least attractive colour, particularly for young people.
While I do appreciate the use of it for the building, and think it contrasts quite nicely against the white pillars and grey roof, I just wish that we could’ve had a more traditional colour, or a facade that took a bit more risks with the Architectural style.
That said, Museums are all about the exhibits and this is hands down the Modular with the best and most varied interiors, especially for fans of Dinosaurs, Space and even Nostalgic LEGO themes.
Chris makes great use of all the extra space afforded to him by the larger footprint and fills it with delightful little builds, models and throwbacks which are fun to build, and for your minifigures to interact with.
And the banners, busy sidewalk and exceptional Cherry Blossom tree add much-needed visual attractions to the facade to steal your gaze away from the Olive Green.
That said, the saving grace is the size. This is a huge Modular, and the 48-stud wide frontage makes for an immediate visual impact, and it will look great as a standalone model or sandwiched against other Modulars in the series. You just have to pick the right spot to ensure that the Olive Green matches its neighbours and is allowed space to shine.
Ultimately, expectations were incredibly high for a Modular Museum, and the biggest Modular ever, which might cause 10326 Natural History Museum to stumble, especially with Modular fans who may have been expecting so much more.
Also, controversial opinion, but I’d really like LEGO to really shake up the Modular Building formula, especially as we look toward the 20th Modular building that comes right after the Natural History Museum.
Rating and score: 3/5 ★★★☆☆
Build  – Great fun with the exhibits and roof, but it was very straight forward and simple
Real Value  – You get a LOT of Modular in the set, but the set’s high price tag might dissuade fans from jumping in on Day One, opting to wait for a sale instead
Innovation  – Great interiors and exhibits, however I would’ve liked a bolder facade, one that makes a statement on the Modular Street
Coolness  – I really like that this is a Museum, with an Adventurers character as its Curator, and all the exhibits inside
Keepability  – A passable addition to LEGO’s Modular Building Collection, but not one of its strongest
Thanks so much for reading my review of 10326 Natural History Museum!
Special thanks to LEGO for sending this set over for an early review!
What do you think of the LEGO Modular Natural History Museum? Would you have done anything differently with it?
To get the latest LEGO news and LEGO Reviews straight in your inbox, subscribe via email, or you can also follow on Google News, or socials on Facebook, Instagram (@jayong28), Twitter or subscribe to the Jay’s Brick Blog Youtube channel.