Museums

Discover some of the world's best museums and exhibitions

Five rock relics at 'The Pink Floyd Exhibition: Their Mortal Remains'
Museums

Five rock relics at 'The Pink Floyd Exhibition: Their Mortal Remains'

Time to think Floyd at the V&A’s new blockbuster retrospective

Syria: A Conflict Explored at the Imperial War Museum
Museums

Syria: A Conflict Explored at the Imperial War Museum

The Syrian conflict has already lasted longer than World War II. Since 2011 it has claimed half a million lives and displaced 11 million people. This new season at the Imperial War Museum attempts to unravel the causes of a war that we’re more used to understanding through its effects.

14 weird but wonderful London museums
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14 weird but wonderful London museums

Get a quirky culture fix at these amazing, oddball institutions

Five things to see at the National Army Museum
Museums

Five things to see at the National Army Museum

Armies are expensive and so are museums devoted to them. Chelsea’s National Army Museum (next to the Royal Hospital) has just reopened after a three-year, £24 million redesign. A huge atrium has been carved out of the middle of the building, and the whole place is much lighter and less gloomy than before. 

Must-see museum exhibitions in London

Hokusai: Beyond the Great Wave
Art

Hokusai: Beyond the Great Wave

Most of us don’t get any better with age. After our twenties we just get uglier, fatter and more useless. But Katsushika Hokusai was like a seriously fine wine. 

Time Out says
  • 4 out of 5 stars
Users say
  • 4 out of 5 stars
Perfume: A Sensory Journey Through Contemporary Scent
Art

Perfume: A Sensory Journey Through Contemporary Scent

Life stinks. And to prove that, the East Wing of Somerset House has been transformed into ten abstract looking chambers – each given over to a different pioneering fragrance –  for an interactive exhibition all about, you guessed it, perfume. 

Time Out says
  • 3 out of 5 stars
Users say
  • 2 out of 5 stars
Into the Unknown: A Journey through Science Fiction
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Into the Unknown: A Journey through Science Fiction

Many people see science fiction as the preserve of crater-faced, four-eyed virgins. There’s something about the combination of aliens, spaceships, nerdy science and dorky storylines that’s, you know, alienating. But science fiction, for all its niche appeal, is also big business, and has been having a major impact on mainstream culture for years.

Time Out says
  • 4 out of 5 stars
Users say
  • 3 out of 5 stars
People Power: Fighting for Peace
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People Power: Fighting for Peace

It’s tempting to open this review with something like ‘in these fractious times, a show about protest couldn’t be more timely, blah blah blah’. And yes: it does feel like dissent is hanging in the air more feverishly than ever right now. But if the IWM’s chronicle of anti-war activism in the UK makes anything clear, it’s that for all the current renewed interest in organised protest, it’s hardly ever lain dormant.

Time Out says
  • 4 out of 5 stars
Robots
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Robots

An animatronic, wall-mounted baby greets you on entering the new Science Museum exhibition. Technically lifelike, it burbles, coos, wriggles its pudgy arms and – in a show of creepy-looking exhibits – manages to be pretty unnerving.

Time Out says
  • 3 out of 5 stars
Users say
  • 4 out of 5 stars
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Find more recommended museum exhibitions in London

Upcoming museum exhibitions in London

Death in the Ice: The Shocking Story of Franklin's Final Expedition
Museums

Death in the Ice: The Shocking Story of Franklin's Final Expedition

We all know about Captain Scott and his ill-fated expedition into the Antarctic. But who remembers John Franklin and the voyage into the North-West Passage of the Arctic? Both ships he took there went missing, and in the following years, dark stories of scurvy and cannibalism arrived in Britain. This exhibition delves into what really happened to Franklin and his crew in the freezing Arctic wastes. 

Plywood
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Plywood

An exhibition about industrially produced sheet wood might not exactly sound enthralling. But never underestimate the V&A's ability to take the most humdrum of subjects and bring it to life. This exhibition will cast a look at plywood's revolutionary use within furniture, aircraft and architecture, and the role it currently plays in digital design.  

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Science Museum

Science Museum

The Science Museum features seven floors of educational and entertaining exhibits, including the Apollo 10 command module and a flight simulator

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  • 5 out of 5 stars
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Geffrye Museum
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Geffrye Museum

Housed in a set of 18th-century almshouses, the Geffrye Museum offers a vivid physical history of the English interior. Displaying original furniture, textiles and decorative arts, the museum recreates a sequence of typical middle-class living rooms from 1600 to the present. It is a fascinating way to take in domestic history. The Geffrye Museum also has an airy restaurant overlooking the gardens, which include a herb garden and a series of period garden 'rooms' with period seating (open Apr 1 to Oct 31, during museum opening hours). Tours of the restored almshouses take place regularly, as do children's activities and workshops (see the website for details).

Users say
  • 4 out of 5 stars
British Museum

British Museum

One of the world's oldest museums, the British Museum is one of London's greatest cultural treasures

Time Out says
  • 5 out of 5 stars
Users say
  • 5 out of 5 stars
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Natural History Museum

Natural History Museum

The handsome Alfred Waterhouse building houses a collection that contains some 70 million plant, animal, fossil, rock and mineral specimens

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  • 5 out of 5 stars
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Design Museum
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Design Museum

Opened in 1989 (following its original incarnation as the Boilerhouse established in the V&A by Terence Conran), the Design Museum by Tower Bridge encompasses modern and contemporary industrial and fashion design, graphics, architecture and multimedia. The smart Blueprint Café has a balcony overlooking the Thames. You can buy design books in the museum shop, as well as products related to the exhibitions. Exhibitions are usually accompanied by a programme of workshops for children.

Users say
  • 4 out of 5 stars
V&A

V&A

The V&A houses one of the world's greatest collections of decorative arts, in such varied fields as ceramics, sculpture, portrait miniatures and photographs

Users say
  • 5 out of 5 stars
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