Traveling to London can be expensive, but it doesn’t have to be!
There are many ways to enjoy this incredible city without breaking the bank. One of the best ways to do this is by visiting some of London’s many fabulous museums – and the best part is, many of them are free!
In this guide, we’ll show you the 10 best free museums in London so you can make the most of your trip.
1. The British Museum
This world-renowned museum houses over 8 million artifacts from all over the globe, ranging from Egyptian mummies to Roman busts to dozens of rare and priceless works of art. And admission is free! Plan to spend at least a few hours here – you won’t be disappointed.
Find more things to do in London here.
2. The National Gallery
Another popular choice for art lovers, the National Gallery contains over 2,300 paintings from the middle ages to the early 20th century. From Leonardo da Vinci to Vincent van Gogh, there’s something here for everyone. Again, admission is free.
3. The Tate Britain and Tate Modern
These two sister museums are must-sees for any art lover visiting London. The Tate Britain focuses on British art from 1500 to the present day, while the Tate Modern showcases international modern and contemporary art. Admission to both museums is free.
- Looking for a Harry Potter museum in London? It may not be free, but it’s great value for money. Read all about the closest you’ll get to a Harry Potter Museum in London here.
4. The Science Museum
This museum is a great choice for families or anyone with an interest in science and technology. With over 15,000 objects on display ranging from early steam engines to a moonrock brought back by the Apollo astronauts, there’s something here for everyone. Admission is free.
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If you’re looking for more cool things, check out this brilliant guide to alternative and unusual things to do in London.
5. The Natural History Museum
Another great option for families, this museum houses one of the largest collections of natural history specimens in the world. From dinosaurs to coral reefs, there’s plenty to see and learn here. Admission is free.
6. The Victoria and Albert Museum
This museum is dedicated to art and design, with over 145 galleries housing everything from fashion and furniture to painting and sculpture. If you’re interested in any kind of art or design, this is the place for you – and again, admission is free!
7. The Imperial War Museum
This museum tells the story of conflict from WWI through today, with exhibitions on everything from everyday life during wartime to iconic artifacts like an original Spitfire plane. Admission is free although there are charges for some special exhibitions.
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8. Sir John Soane’s Museum
The Sir John Soane’s Museum is an absolute hidden gem tucked away in London’s bustling Holborn district.
A visit to the former residence of the eccentric architect Sir John Soane feels like stepping back in time as you wander through the maze of rooms filled with his eclectic collection of art, antiquities, and architectural curiosities.
Highlights include the awe-inspiring Egyptian sarcophagus of Seti I and an array of paintings by greats like Canaletto and Turner.
A must-visit for history buffs and art lovers seeking a unique, off-the-beaten-path experience.
9. The Design Museum
If you’re a design enthusiast exploring London, the Design Museum in swanky Kensington is right up your alley.
This sleek, contemporary space showcases the best design across various fields, from cutting-edge technology to fashion and graphics.
The museum’s ever-changing exhibitions will keep you coming back, and the permanent collection offers a fascinating look at iconic designs that have shaped our world.
After soaking in all that creative inspiration, pop into the museum’s café for a well-deserved break.
10. Bank of England Museum
Nestled in the heart of London’s financial district, the Bank of England Museum is a surprising find worth your time.
Step inside, and you’ll uncover the story of the Bank, from its beginnings in 1694 to its present-day role in the economy.
Marvel at the dazzling display of gold bars, learn about the intricacies of banknotes, and even try lifting a genuine gold bar!
It’s a fascinating visit that’ll leave you feeling like an insider in London’s world of finance.
As you can see, there are plenty of ways to enjoy London without spending a fortune.
So next time you plan a trip, add some (or all!) of these fantastic free museums to your itinerary – you won’t regret it.
No, not all museums in London are free. However, many major ones offer free entry to their permanent collections, while special exhibitions or events may require an admission fee. In this guide, I have listed museums that are free of charge for everyone, including both locals and tourists.
Most museums in London have security measures and may require visitors to check large bags or backpacks at the entrance. It’s best to travel light when visiting museums or be prepared to use the cloakroom facilities if available.
Most major museums in London provide wheelchair access and facilities for disabled visitors. However, some smaller or historic museums may have limited access due to the nature of the building. It’s best to check the museum’s website or contact them directly for accessibility information.
Most museums in London allow non-flash photography for personal use, but there may be restrictions for specific exhibits or artworks. Always look for signs or ask museum staff if you’re unsure.