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British Museum, London

4.7
#1 of 28,796 in Things to do in United Kingdom
See the development of human culture on every continent from prehistory to the present at British Museum. The museum houses one of the largest collections of works in the world, some 8 million. You'll encounter many significant items here, including the Rosetta Stone, the Magna Carta, and the Parthenon Frieze. The museum is broken into various departments, each covering a specific place and time, such as ancient Egypt and Sudan, or a theme, such as coins and medals. The works cover a broad spectrum of styles, from ancient carvings, sculptures, stoneware, and gold metalwork to prints and drawings from famous Renaissance artists. You won't have time to cover all the museum's collections in a single visit, so you should choose subjects that interest you and focus on them. A map of the museum helps you navigate efficiently. Pick up a copy at an information point inside, or download a digital one to your smartphone or tablet ahead of time. If you're not sure which galleries to visit, you can join a highlights tour. Departing twice a day every Friday, Saturday, and Sunday, these guided tours show you the museum's most important pieces. Book this tour online or at the information desk in the front court. If specific galleries interest you, try to catch one of the free daily Eye-Opener tours. Galleries host one of these 30- to 40-minute tours per day, giving you a deeper historical understanding of specific periods and regions. Using our online itinerary creator, London attractions like British Museum can form part of a personalized travel itinerary.
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54,525 reviews
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4.7
TripAdvisor
  • August 21, 2017
    It is pretty good in my opinion. It has collections of the best in the world. It's free and convenient. Don't miss the part devoted to Egypt and Greece. It needs time to see in dark conditions.
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  • August 21, 2017
    So OK we paid a £5 donation and had to queue for 15 minutes but it is so worth it. Astonishingly superb and unique exhibits with multi-language audio tours. You could easily spend all day there and on...  more »
  • August 21, 2017
    Amazing place. We went 3 times! Highly recommended! There are days that can't be people and you've got half an hour of tail, other days you enter very fast.
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  • July 23, 2017
    I went to see the Hokusai exhibition which was so absolutely brilliant! Entry was very smooth probably due to it being necessary to book your time slot in advance and which resulted in limited numbers viewing the works at any one time. This also worked since the exhibition was shown within a pretty intimate space. However the building itself is massive and you enter the museum into a spectacularly vast light and open area and up to the exhibition via a broad and winding staircase. Would be wonderful for weddings! The shop was suitably positioned at the end of the exhibition.
  • August 18, 2017
    The British Museum was a fantastic experience, and I would recommend it to all tourists in London. Though you may stay for 2-5 hours, you will not be able to experience it all. You should make room for a few days to explore this place. I thoroughly enjoyed the Egyptian, Mesopotamian, and Greek rooms. You will enjoy seeing old artefacts including the Rosetta Stone. They have above average food in their dining hall. Make sure to get before peak times because it can get surprisingly overcrowded. This was a special place that I hope to enjoy again!
  • August 30, 2017
    Well worth a visit. Massive collections from all over the world. Prepare to spend the whole day there and still not see everything this museum has to offer. The only downside is that there is rarely any background information on the artifacts, with a bit more history on the objects it would be much easier to visualize their importance, otherwise it's quite raw and you really have to be into history to fully appreciate it.
  • August 19, 2017
    Love this museum!! So many interesting things to see and learn here. Staff is nice and friendly. Toilets from floor level were dirty and smelly on a Friday evening. That's why I don't put a 5 star. Also not many benches available to rest, because it's a huge place where you get tired, and need to rest a bit. But other than that, love this museum!! Went there like 5 or 6 times now, and enjoy it every time.
  • June 27, 2017
    This is one of my favorite places to visit when I go to London. I agree with a previous reviewer; wear comfy shoes, because you will be walking for a LONG while, and even then, a few days will be needed to explore every section of the museum, if that's your goal. One of my favorite areas is the ancient Greek and Roman section. I went to art school and studied ancient Greek art, so seeing some of these sculptures in real life was incredible. If any art student is in London, I absolutely recommend seeing these pieces, it's so much more fulfilling to study them in person and not just look at a picture. :)

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Where to stay in London

Many of London's main attractions are spread out, so nearby public transportation is key. There is no downtown area as such in London, and some of the least expensive hotels have more convenient access to tourist sites than the costlier ones. For a quintessential London experience, consider staying in the West End. This part of town offers excellent theaters, historical sites, and eating and shopping options for every taste. Lodging won’t be cheap, but you’ll have the colorful variety of London life right at your doorstep. Look at Notting Hill or Chelsea for charming and less expensive boutique hotels and B&Bs.
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