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Museums in England

England is home to some of the best museums in the world, offering visitors a chance to explore the country’s rich history and culture.

England is renowned for its world-class museums that attract millions of tourists annually.

Some of the most famous museums in the world are located in England, especially in its capital city of London. 

The museums in England are not restricted to art and display the wonders of science, sports, music and more. 

This article shares information about the best museums in England, the best cities for museum hopping and more. 

Top Museums in England 

Tate Modern
Museum

Tate Modern
Museum

London Transport Museum

London Transport Museum

The Postal Museum

The Postal
Museum

Other museums in Italy

Significance of Museums in English Culture

England has a long and eventful history spanning over two millennia, ruled by the Romans, Anglo-Saxons, Vikings, and Normans. 

Successive periods of English history and London as the hub of the British Empire have made England home to invaluable artifacts, objects and works of art over the centuries. 

English museums act as treasure troves and comprehensive records of the nation’s past, helping people understand and connect with history. 

Iconic museums like the British Museum provide a snapshot of world history and cultures.

Hence, many travelers visit museums as a popular recreational activity in England, especially in London’s cultural quarters. 

Free entry to permanent collections of the best museum make them accessible for all travelers and end up attracting millions of visitors annually.

Top Cities for Museums

Several English cities are home to clusters of fascinating museums and galleries. 

Here are some of the best cities for a museum tour:

London

London
Image: History.com

One can spend weeks in London and still not cover all its museums. 

Its most popular museum, the British Museum, sees over 5 million visitors annually. 

This museum showcases artifacts from civilizations all over the world. 

The Natural History Museum and Science Museum see similar footfall. 

Smaller gems like the Victoria and Albert Museum, National Gallery and Tate Modern are a must-visit. 

You can also enjoy specialized museums in London like the Imperial War Museum, London Transport Museum and Pollock’s Toy Museum.

Liverpool

Liverpool offers a slew of museums that cover various domains. 

The Museum of Liverpool provides an overview of the city’s history, while the International Slavery Museum documents the slave trade. 

Music lovers must visit The Beatles Story museum which shares the story of the band with their beloved fans.

 The Merseyside Maritime Museum captures Liverpool’s shipbuilding heritage using model ships. 

You can also visit the World Museum which houses Egyptian mummies alongside local archaeology finds.

Manchester

Manchester is not only famous for its football club but also for its museums.

One of the must-visit museums in England is the Manchester Art Gallery which has an impressive collection of Victorian and Pre-Raphaelite art. 

The People’s History Museum comprehensively covers England’s labor history. 

For sports fans, the interactive National Football Museum celebrates football culture and memorabilia. 

If you are more into science, the Science and Industry Museum, located in the railway station building provides is the best place to visit. 

You can explore Manchester’s industrial heritage with interactive and engaging exhibits here.

Oxford

Museums in Oxford, England, offer a wide range of experiences, from world-renowned collections of art and artifacts to more specialized museums.

 The Ashmolean Museum is the oldest public museum in the United Kingdom, and it houses a vast collection of art and artifacts from around the world. 

The Oxford University Museum of Natural History has a collection of over 5 million specimens, including fossils, minerals, and plants. 

The museum’s exhibits explore the diversity of life on Earth, from the dinosaurs to the human body.

You can also find other interesting museums like Pitt Rivers, the Museum of the History of Science, the Bate Collection of Musical Instruments and more. 

York

York has an array of history museums, considering it was England’s ancient capital in medieval times. 

The huge Yorkshire Museum displays artifacts from each period of the region’s history. 

The National Railway Museum is home to iconic trains and lets you board vintage carriages.

 The Jorvik Viking Centre uses models and multimedia to recreate Viking-age York.

Must-Visit English Museums

Here are some of the most famous museums in England you can’t miss on your bucket list. 

British Museum, London

One of the world’s oldest national public museums, its permanent collection totals over 8 million works chronicling world history and culture. 

The Egyptian gallery with its Rosetta Stone and mummies is legendary. 

It also houses the controversial Elgin Marbles, taken from the Parthenon in Athens. 

You can enjoy an unrivaled treasure trove of global antiquities at the British Museum. 

National Gallery, London

Located at Trafalgar Square, the National Gallery houses over 2,300 masterpieces spanning 700 years. 

Its Western European painting collections from the Middle Ages to the 1900s are stunning. 

You can enjoy the most popular works by da Vinci, Michelangelo, Van Gogh and more at this museum. 

Natural History Museum, London

With its grand Romanesque architecture and ornate interiors, this colossal museum is dedicated to natural history. 

You can see 80 million specimens ranging from meteorites to fossils to stoic wildlife dioramas on display. 

Kids love the towering dinosaur skeletons in this museum. 

Science Museum, London

This museum offers an interactive feast for science enthusiasts with its cutting-edge galleries showcasing sciences from mechanics to space exploration. 

Iconic exhibits include Stephenson’s Rocket, the Apollo 10 capsule, Crick and Watson’s DNA model. 

The Children’s Gallery at the Science Museum has hands-on exhibits that are great for kids.

Black Country Living Museum, Dudley

This unique open-air museum resurrects the Black Country’s mid-19th-century industrial past. 

Original buildings from that era, including homes, shops, a school and mine, are rebuilt inside the vast grounds. 

Actors in period costumes recreate daily life, adding to the immersive experience of the museum.

Tate Modern, London

Tate Modern London
Image: Artnews.com

Housed in a former power station, Tate Modern holds British and international Modern and contemporary art collections from 1900 onwards.

This is a must-visit museum in London. 

The constantly changing exhibitions of Tate Modern are known to stimulate and surprise visitors. 

The vast turbine hall displays epic installations you shouldn’t miss. 

Tate Modern offers stunning buildings and a setting on the Thames which is perfect for a casual London weekend plan.

Photo by Nicole Baster on Unsplash

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