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Wellcome Collection

Museums, Science and technology Euston Free
4 out of 5 stars
5 out of 5 stars
(27user reviews)
 (© Oliver Knight / Time Out)
© Oliver Knight / Time Out
 (From 'Death: A Self-Portrait' – © Wellcome Library, London)
From 'Death: A Self-Portrait' – © Wellcome Library, London
 (© Wellcome Images)
© Wellcome Images
 (© Wellcome Images)
© Wellcome Images
 (© Wellcome Images)
© Wellcome Images
 (© Wellcome Images)
© Wellcome Images
 (Wandering Moon', shadow installation 2013 – © Wellcome Images, Courtesy B-Floor Theatre/Wandering Moon)
Wandering Moon', shadow installation 2013 – © Wellcome Images, Courtesy B-Floor Theatre/Wandering Moon
 (Shoichi KOGA, "Seitenmodoki" – © Wellcome Images)
Shoichi KOGA, "Seitenmodoki" – © Wellcome Images
 (© Wellcome Library, London)
© Wellcome Library, London
 ('Monster Soup...' by William Heath – © Wellcome Library, London)
'Monster Soup...' by William Heath – © Wellcome Library, London
 (Dana Salvo, From the series 'The Day, the Night and the Dead' – © Clark Gallery, courtesy Wellcome Collection)
Dana Salvo, From the series 'The Day, the Night and the Dead' – © Clark Gallery, courtesy Wellcome Collection
 (© Wellcome Images)
© Wellcome Images
 (Cafe – © Wellcome Images)
Cafe – © Wellcome Images

Time Out says

4 out of 5 stars

Sir Henry Wellcome, a pioneering 19th-century pharmacist, amassed a vast and idiosyncratic collection of implements and curios relating to the medical trade, now displayed here. In addition to these fascinating and often grisly items-ivory carvings of pregnant women, used guillotine blades, Napoleon’s toothbrush- there are several serious works of modern art, most on display in a smaller room to one side of the main chamber of curiosities. The temporary exhibitions are often brilliant and come with all manner of associated events, from talks to walks. A £17.5 million development project opened up even more areas of the building to the public including two new galleries and the beautiful Reading Room, which is a combination of library, gallery and event space.

Read more about The Wellcome Collection's weirdest exhibits



Address: 183 Euston Rd
Transport: Tube: Euston Rail: Euston
Price: Free
Opening hours: Galleries: Tue, Wed, Fri, Sat 10am-6pm; Thur 10am-8pm; Sun 11am-6pm Library: Mon-Wed, Fri 10am-6pm; Thur 10am-8pm; Sat 10am-4pm
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  • Friday April 24 2020 Free

Users say (27)

5 out of 5 stars

Average User Rating

4.5 / 5

Rating Breakdown

  • 5 star:17
  • 4 star:9
  • 3 star:0
  • 2 star:0
  • 1 star:1
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The Wellcome Collection is a place you must visit in London for the building and permanent collection alone. Full of curiosity objects - Napoleon's pipe, anyone? - it is now showing this very interesting exhibition that walks you through the relationship between people, health and buildings. It helps to get your head around how London overcame sanitation problems, as well as investigates how hospitals have been thought of throughout the years. A good pause for reflection, would recommend as a good package for an afternoon of culture.


Over the years I've visited some fascinating exhibitions here and there is always something for everyone with learning activities for the children and interactive experiments for the adults too. Medicinal science is weird and wonderful and almost art and The Welcome Collection has an eye for curating unique and thought provoking displays, events and collections to marvel at.


A beautiful museum with weird and wonderful exhibitions, this place is a must visit if you're in the area. With a stellar gift shop and very helpful staff its well worth a trip.

I'm very fond of this quirky gallery. It's exhibits are interesting and easily digested if you visit on Thursday evenings when it's open late, like I did.

The gift shop has solved my gift buying dilemmas on many occasions, with it's wide array of interesting books and gadgets.

The cafe and restaurant are excellent, whether you want a quick coffee and a catch up or something more substantial.

However my favorite place is the reading room on the second floor where you are encouraged to flick through (replica) folios, read books and play games.

Go visit if you are ever in the neighborhood. It's just across the road from euston station.


Such a cool a quirky museum. They have permanent and also temporary exhibits. It's a great place to hang out, even for a first date. It's like a hidden gem in central London and never gets crazily busy!


The Wellcome Collection is a magical place for anyone who wants to learn more about the world. Not only is their space amazing at teaching you new things, but the whole museums is accessible to everyone, a real focal point of all of their initiatives. 

In February they hosted an weekend of shows called "The Sick of the Fringe" allowing the public to interact with speakers, talks and performances about healthy, humanity, science and art. 

What I love most about this space, is that it gives you time to reflect on how you feel part of the world, using things from our every day and teaching us to look at them in a new way especially the current exhibitions discussing animal interactions and electricity. 

Now be careful because it can seem like a lot of information, but if you give yourself to come back, and go slow you'll definitely come back for more. 


This is a great place that is often forgotten about and essentially as the name tag suggests; a free destination for the incurably curious. The Medicine man and Medicine Now exhibitions are actually really interesting well displayed with various items from Singaporean torture chairs to bizarre looking masks. Henry Wellcome sure did have an extensive and impressive collection. The reading room i particularly love here and i would urge you to visit this area. There are books and board games, lots of tables and chairs to while away your time on a rainy cold sunday afternoon whilst being surrounded some interesting exhibits including an old ornate dental unit and spittoon and fancy lights!! My favourite part of the reading room has to be the stairs with comfy massive beanbag cushions that are great to crash out on and lounge about on. Also don’t forget about the library, other exhibitions running throughout the year and the friday night late spectaculars as well.


Love this place and usually use the cafe as an office when I'm working from home. Central location and across the road from Euston so perfect meeting place for people traveling from out of London. Today I decided to explore and take a break from my work to visit the museum. It was amazing and weirdly wonderful. Perfect if interested in medicine and science. I really enjoyed Bedlam; about mental asylum. There are loads of upcoming events that I will look to attend and just wish I would of experienced it sooner. Will update on future visits soon.


The Wellcome collection often feels like a hidden gem as it rarely seems overcrowded, rushed or crammed. Featuring some permanent collections and an ever changing line up of temporary exhibitions there is always something new to see when you visit. The collection was founded in 1936 following the death of Sir Henry Solomon Wellcome, a philanthropist and 'medicine man'. Within the collection there is also a cafe and extensive gift shop as a restaurant on the second floor.

This museum is well worth a visit if you are ever in the area but make sure to give yourself enough time to explore all the wonders kept within. 


My favourite museum in London! The permanent exhibitions are brilliant and the temporary ones are always thought provoking and a bit on the crazy side. They have great free events pretty much every week. And the shop is full of so many things and books that you don't need but really really want. If you've never been, go now!


Probably my favourite museum in London, and it’s definitely the most underrated. The exhibitions are always so fascinatingly weird, insightful and thought-provoking, providing the audience with biological and psychological understanding of our own existence. The Collection is different to other museums in the sense that with such a wealth of knowledge to evoke interest and curiosity, all for free, the aims of the exhibitions are to educate, resonate and inspire, not to draw in a huge crowd for profit.


The best museum in London for racketing through every emotion you knew yourself capable of feeling in one lone visit. From feeling content and snuggly in the glorious Reading Room, to feeling genuinely horrified at the veil of human teeth in the Medicine Man exhibition, you will eventually leave this place feeling ratified about being alive and with categoric evidence that our forebears were weirdos (one human being who lived actually collected forceps, for example and they're all there on show). 

The Reading Room is like walking into a library that Roald Dahl dreamt up. There are board games, a post box through which you can send a postcard to anyone in the world FOR FREE and floor cushions the size of your London flat that you pay £600 a month for. Go and live there, I would. 


Can't believe I've never been in here before despite walking past more times than I can count.

Despite the fact that it's in the middle of London and I visited during school holidays the museum wasn't horribly busy like most free London museums.

In addition to the permanent and temporary exhibitions there is an interesting gift shop and an expensive cafe but you can easily avoid both of these.

Well worth a visit.

I don't come here nearly enough. It's wonderfully weird, especially if you're into things related to medicine, biology and the mind. But even if you're not, there's enough happening here to keep you intrigued, like the Medicine Man exhibition - a permanent collection which presents the story of the museum's founder Henry Wellcome. A late Saturday afternoon is a good time to go; it's not too busy so you'll have time to visit all galleries. Swing by the cafe too - it's a great meetup spot. 


Wellcome Collection has my favourite slogan of any organisation: 'The free destination for the incurably curious'. I have always enjoyed my trips there, and always leave feeling smarter than when I arrived. I wouldn't say it's a place to bring young kids as the exhibitions can be quite text-heavy, and the topics more mature. Ranging recently from Forensics, Consciousness, Medicine and Sound - they pick broad subjects and curate the exhibitions in a coherent and multi-media way, combining interesting expert opinions, rare artefacts and bespoke installations. You will always need longer than you think to take it all in. The crowds really fluctuate, I've been on a weekend where I've had to queue for half an hour and a different weekend where I've had plenty of space to explore. The café is the best of all the London Museums, going way beyond your usual sandwich and crisps and offering healthy and delicious meals at good value.


My first visit to the museum today and it's absolutely charming.  Everyone will be interested in the displays on offer - history of medicine and the human body.  So "visitor friendly" with audio and visual displays and loads of seating. I didn't have time to wend my way past the beanbags on the stairs to make my way up to the library but I'll be back to peruse further. The shop on the ground floor has interesting books and souvenirs. Cafe is expensive.


Hands down, my favourite museum in London. Free, endlessly interesting and never too crowded (when I've been anyway), it is an insightful journey through the history of medicine. The temporary exhibits are great fun too but I always leave myself lots of time for the cases on the third floor. There is just tons to see and consider. 

This is my favorite museum in London! Temporary and permanent exhibitions are very diverse and interesting (and free!). Watch out at the weekends as it can get very busy. The shop is also well worth a visit!


Came here for the 'yellowbluepink' exhibition (which was interesting) but I was actually more intrigued with the rest of the Collection. The medicine room was chock full of history and rare pieces and the medicine now exhibition was also interesting to see (the slice of human especially so). 

The Reading Room is quiet solitude. I could definitely see myself reading for a few hours there (except no food or drink allowed). Forget a book? There are plenty there to grab off the shelf. Oh and they have bean bags >.<

Did I mention the whole thing is free?


I like their exhibitions a lot. It's got the right amount of quirky for me and I came away from the recent sexology exhibit feeling like I've been touched in all the right places. Weird and wonderful and has the best name out of all the other museums. 


This place just didn’t do it for me! Being a North Londoner, I had often passed the Wellcome Collection and thought ‘oh, I really must actually set aside some time to go there!’. I found that the hype was all in the marketing. I did not come away feeling like I had learnt anything, nor did it confirm anything I already knew. Everything seemed too cryptic and vague for me to feel engaged and stimulated. I found the Alice Anderson exhibition totally uninspiring and left very disappointed.


Want to see Florence Nightingale’s moccasins? What about a fragment of Jeremy Bentham’s skin? Or perhaps a 13th century Peruvian mummified male body? This museum houses a fascinating array of artefacts, focusing on the history of medicine. Since I last visited, redevelopment work has been completed and opened up more of the building. There is a new gallery space, which is currently home to their latest exhibition ‘The Institute of Sexology’. But perhaps my favourite addition to the museum is The Reading Room, a large, spacious area in which to kick back and relax with a book. Many of the people present looked pretty chilled, sprawled out as they were, reading, on beanbags which lined both sides of the staircase at one end of the room. Add to the aforementioned the permanent galleries, the schedule of free talks (reserve a place early to avoid disappointment), Wellcome Library, café, and largely medical themed bookshop, and there’s more than enough to ensure an educating, informative and enjoyable day out.


I’m a little ashamed to say it but despite during all my time at UCL and despite being literally on each other’s doorstep, not once did I set foot inside the Wellcome Collection. This weekend, I did and I absolutely loved it.

The Wellcome Collection is a museum for the “incurably curious”. It houses an eclectic collection of unusual medical artefacts. It plays host to contemporary and historical exhibitions and anything that explores the connection between medicine, science and art. On my visit, I was able to explore an exhibition called ‘The Institute of Sexology” which candidly discusses themes of sex, erotica film and photography. At the end, visitors are welcome to share their views anonymously in a questionnaire on the subject, which are then used for research purposes. It feels great to share your views!

I recommend checking out the Medicine Room where you can pick up a free audio guide to make sense of the many unusual artefacts in the room. For me, the Reading Room was a real gem. You can sit on a giant beanbag on a staircase and peruse a book at your leisure in beautiful and serene surroundings. Visitors are welcome to share their personal stories too, anonymously on paper dotted around the room. Afterwards, relax in Wellcome kitchen for food and refreshments.

I definitely recommend a visit. It’s free, located right beside Euston Square station and on the first friday of every month, the museum is open late so you can ease your curious mind with a drink in hand.

An excellent collection full of interesting and informative exhibits. Especially the exhibitions that change, are always well done!

I always try to visit whenever I am in the area. I find the collections fascinating and accessible - you do not have to be a specialist of the subject to understand the exhibits. They have the perfect combination of interactive exhibits and visual displays, I particularly like the 'Life, Genes and You' exhibition. Phenomenal!

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