There are about 300 archaeological open-air museums in Europe, which do more than simply present (re)constructed outdoor sceneries based on archaeology. They have an important role as education facilities and many showcase archaeology in a variety of ways. This research assesses the value of archaeological open-air museums, their management and their visitors, and is the first to do so in such breadth and detail. After a literature study and general data collection among 199 of such museums in Europe, eight archaeological open-air museums from different countries were selected as case studies. Management and visitors have different perspectives leading to different priorities and appreciation levels. The studies conclude with recommendations, ideas and strategies which are applicable not just to the eight archaeological open-air museums under study, but to any such museum in general. The recommendations are divided into the six categories of management, staff, collections, marketing, interpretation and the visitors.