Life on Earth and Earth itself appear in detail in the Natural History Museum. Combining the latest interactive techniques and traditional displays, the exhibitions address fundamental issues, like the origin of species and the evolution of humans. The large cathedral-shaped building is a masterpiece. Opened in 1881, was designed by Alfred Waterhouse who used revolutionary techniques of Victorian construction. It was built on a structure of iron and steel hidden behind arches and columns, beautifully decorated with carvings of plants and animals.
Do you want a great day out in London combined with some kind of information? The Natural History Museum would be the perfect place to provide such things. This museum is positioned in Cromwell Road and opens at ten in the morning and closes at five thirty in the afternoon every day. The museum is entrance-free but you might be obliged to give a small amount for some exhibitions. There are a range of means to reach the museum. Local buses stop near the building and the Tube station at South Kensington is the closest so you can walk from there to the museum. You may take a rented car but it can cause you much money since parking on the street outside the building is metered.
You can find several picnic areas and cafés within the building so you can enjoy a tea and sandwich or coffee and cake inside the central hall café. However, if you are organized enough and have carried your own lunch then you can go to the picnic area and find a collection of seats where you can enjoy your picnic. Natural History Museum offers quite a few shops where you can buy souvenirs if you want. You can go to the dino store or look through the museum shop for some prehistoric fans. You can also go to the earth shop and pick treasure souvenirs.
There are various places of interest inside the museum. When you arrive, you can request for a floor plan or before you travel, print a copy. This is a great advice since you can plan your time in order to suit your tastes as well as what exhibition is presented during your time of visit. You will surely be pleasantly surprised with the things offered by the museum. You will definitely enjoy your day out here.
Gallery Guide and Highlights
The Natural History Museum is divided into galleries of Life and Earth. The first is installed in the main part of the building. The skeleton of a Diplodocus dinosaur, of 26 meters, dominates the entrance hall in the galleries of Life – Human Biology with the Mammals, located on the left of the hall, the Terrifying Insects, Ecology and Dinosaurs located on the right. The Darwin Centre is accessed through the room 24. On the first floor are the Origin of Species and Minerals and Meteorites. The huge escalator in Visions of Earth passes through a globe to the high points of the Earth Galleries, the Inner Power and the Treasures of the Earth.
The busiest area has skeletons and life-size models, such as a T. Rex.
Visions of Earth
The specimens fit on the slate wall of this beautiful gallery. Includes a piece of Moon rock brought by the astronauts of Apollo 16 in 1972.
Gallery Earth’s Treasury
It has hundreds of precious stones, rocks and minerals, with some of the rarest products of the Earth.
In this huge gallery, mammals and their fossil relatives appear dwarves next to the blue whale size model.
Gives visitors access to a priceless collection of specimens, started by Hans Sloane in 1753.
Power Within Gallery
This gallery has a convincing earthquake simulator, and it is very busy.
Daily from 10:00AM till 5:50PM.
Closed on 24, 25 and 26th December.
Free of charge
London SW7 5BD
Closest attractions: Harrod’s, Royal Albert Hall, Victoria and Albert Museum and Kensington Gardens.
Getting there:South Kensington tube station. Buses 14, 49, 70, 74, 345, 360, 414 and C1.
Telephone: +44 (0) 20 7942 5011
Facilities and Additional Information
- Disabled access facilities;
- Audio guide;
- Restaurants and cafés.