The largest public building constructed in the UK in the 20th century keeps its doors open until 8pm on Tuesdays so visitors can enjoy the temporary displays as well as the permanent John Ritblat Gallery. With over 150 million items, a copy of every publication produced in the UK and Ireland, artwork by artists such as Antony Gormley and Eduardo Paolozzi, and a host of historically momentous works - including the Gutenberg Bible, Shakespeare's First Folio, the Lindisfarne Gospels, Handel's Messiah, drafts of the Magna Carta and The Beatles' lyrics, the only surviving copy of Beowulf and the Diamond Sutra, the world's earliest dated printed book - the British Library also boasts a flurry of attractions for the casual visitor, including films, musical performances and poetry readings. Tours cost around £6 and are an invaluable way of soaking it all in with a bit of direction.
London Museums: Late Openings
Tuesdays until 8pm | FREE
96 Euston Road, King's Cross, London, NW1 2DB
Events at British Library
Friday 27th May 2016 - 6.30pm-8.30pm | £12, OAP £10, concs £8
A talk exploring punk, past and present.
15th April to 6th September 2016
Saturday 28th May 2016 - 11am-8.30pm | £19.76
A look at the musicians, designers, photographers and writers who spearheaded the Punk movement.
Tuesday 31st May 2016 - 10am-1pm | £20
Gain a clear understanding of how copyright applies to your creations.
Tuesday 31st May 2016 - 2pm-6pm | £98, with discount £48
A practical class in how to improve a small business's marketing.
First Tuesday of the month until 9pm | FREE (first 200 people)
13 Lincoln's Inn Fields, Holborn, London, WC2A 3BP
Widely recognised as the best house-museum in the world, Sir John Soane's Museum is lit by candlelight on the first Tuesday of each month from 6pm until 9pm. The popularity of the evening event is such that at 5.30pm tickets are issued to the first 200 people who arrive - with no reservations possible. Visitors can only take one ticket per person and so cannot hold a space in the queue for late-comers. This may mean you have to leave work early to stand a chance of enjoying the candlelit museum - but it's certainly worth the hassle for this is one of the quintessential London experiences. The extraordinary museum is an appealingly higgledy-piggledy treasure trove of artefacts - with a delight lurking in each nook and cranny. The neo-classical architect Sir John Soane's former residence boasts over 30,000 architectural drawings and antiquities - including works by Turner, Canaletto, Piranesi and Hogarth, whose eight canvasses of 'A Rake's Progress' are worth a visit in their own right.
Wednesdays until 10pm | FREE
Exhibition Road, South Kensington, London, SW7 2DD
Tube: South Kensington Station
Adults-only Lates nights on the last Wednesday of the month keeps the doors of the Science Museum open till 10pm and allow visitors to enjoy a free evening of entertainment and exhibitions without a constant stream of mischievous children. The Science Museum Lates cover a broad range of themed topics - anything from Sexuality to Sexual Health, Zombies to Broken Hearts, the Science of Comedy to Climate Change - and operate alongside regular returning activities, including gallery tours, lectures, a pub quiz, speed dating, a silent disco, live music, a bar and child-free playtime in the interactive Launchpad gallery. The Science Museum is one of the most interactive in the city, with loads of hands-on exhibits, and these special evening openings are a great way for adults to recreate the old school field day vibe of their youth with topically themed activities, events and entertainment.
Events at Science Museum
4th May to 19th June 2016 - Various Times | Free
See science from a new perspective with these 20 ground-breaking biomedical and clinical images. Highlights include Alfred Anwander's representation of pathways in the brain's nerve fibres, and a photomacrograph showing delicate golden scales on a ...
10th February to 4th September 2016 | £10 (Adults), £7 (Concessions)
Saturday 28th May 2016 at 12.30pm and 2pm | Free
An in-character talk with telephone operator Miss Nellie Rumble, discovering how a manual telephone switchboard works.
Sunday 29th May 2016 at 12.30pm and 2pm | Free
An in-character talk.
Monday 30th May 2016 at 12.30pm and 2pm | Free
An in-character talk about Mr Thomas Alvar Edison, the man whose phonograph and kinetoscope entertained millions with sound and vision from the 1880s onwards.
Wednesdays until 9pm | FREE
Arkwright Road, London, NW3 6DH
Tube: Finchley Road Station
The Camden Arts Centre - which is actually located in Hampstead - has become a prime location for top class arts exhibitions thanks to a radical renovation in 2007. Wednesday evenings sees the slickly designed Centre open its doors until 9pm, inviting guests to browse its excellent galleries, café, bookshop and dedicated reading area where the archives and research facilities accumulate. Dedicated to contemporary visual art and education, the Centre strives to involve the public in the ideas and processes of its exhibited artists and the artists who inspire them. A fantastic spacious terrace area stretching around the café makes this a popular spot on summer evenings and gives on to the Centre's garden, which offers visitors a quiet retreat from the hub of activity.
Events at Camden Arts Centre
24th March to 5th June 2016 - 10am-6pm | Free
24th March to 5th June 2016 - Various Times | Free
15th January to 14th June 2016 - Various Times | Free
28th May, 4th Jun, 11th Jun, 18th Jun and 25th Jun 2016 - 2.30pm-5pm | Free
Sunday 29th May and Sunday 5th June 2016 - 2pm-4.30pm | Free
Wednesdays until 10pm (July and August) | £9
66 Royal Hospital Garden, Chelsea, London, SW3 4HS
Tube: Sloane Square Station
Every summer, the second oldest botanic garden in Britain opens its gates until 10pm on Wednesdays in July and August. Established in 1673 by the Worshipful Society of Apothecaries, the Chelsea Physic Garden is home to largest fruiting olive tree in Britain and the world's northern-most outdoor grapefruit tree. Hidden behind towering brick walls, protected from the city's sounds and harsh breezes, the most idyllic collection of plants flourish in a unique, carefully created microclimate. The Garden is open from midday throughout the summer from April to October - but guests just have the two months to benefit from the late Wednesday openings. Besides the pretty gravel pathways, statues and ponds that separate and decorate the different gardens with a stunning array of plants, the Garden also boasts a shop where visitors can buy unusual plants and a café renowned for its tasty homemade cakes.
Thursdays until 10pm | £8
Silk Street, City, London, EC2 8DS
Must-see exhibitions on design, architecture and pop culture by acclaimed architects, Turner Prize-winning artists and famous photographers as well as major exhibitions by leading international figures are a regular occurrence at the Barbican Art Gallery, located on the third floor of the Barbican Centre. Each exhibition is accompanied by a programme of thought-provoking talks, screenings and events - and while doors are open late until 8pm every day except Wednesdays (when the space closes as 6pm), they are open even later on Thursdays, when guests can stay until 10pm. The same goes for The Curve, the Centre's free exhibition space for specially commissioned works and contemporary art.
Events at Barbican Art Gallery
16th March to 19th June 2016
13th October 2016 to 5th February 2017
Thursdays until 8pm | £6
25 Brook Street, Mayfair, London, W1K 4HB
Dedicated to the life and works of the German-born baroque composer George Frideric Handel, this beautiful and intimate museum in Mayfair has a weekly late opening until 8pm on Thursdays, with concerts from 6.30pm to 7.30pm. Handel House Museum is located in the beautifully restored Georgian townhouse where Handel lived from 1723 until his death in 1759. It was here that he wrote masterpieces such as 'Messiah', 'Zadok the Priest' and 'Music for the Royal Fireworks'. The museum offers insight into Handel's life, eighteenth-century culture and music - and there is also a small Jimi Hendrix display (the legendary guitarist lived in the upper floors of the adjoining house for two years in the late 60s).
Thursdays until 9pm | FREE (except specific exhibitions)
12 Carlton House Terrace, The Mall, St James's, London, SW1Y 5AH
Housed in elegant Regency premises on the Mall since 1968, the Institute of Contemporary Arts (ICA) boasts three galleries, two cinemas, a theatre, restaurant, an excellent bookshop, sun-lit late bar and cafe. The ICA aims to challenge accepted notions through its programme of arthouse cinema, performance art, philosophical debates, lectures, art-themed club nights, music parties and cutting-edge bands. On Thursdays the galleries stay open until 9pm during exhibitions, while the bookshop is open all week (except Mondays) until 9pm. Founded in 1946, the artistic and cultural centre was initially housed in a basement on Oxford Street before moving to its first premises in Soho. With the support of the Arts Council, the ICA moved to its current location at Nash House in 1968. In recent years, the ICA has curated exhibitions featuring the likes of Yoko Ono, Gerhard Richter and Damien Hirst.
Events at Institute of Contemporary Arts (ICA)
Friday 27th May 2016 - 11am | £15, mems £10, concs £12
Informal discussion event for arts professionals.
25th May to 17th July 2016 - Various Times | £1
A collection of photographs, films and ephemera relating to the artist's graphic and spatial design and architecture.
20th April to 19th June 2016 - Various Times | Free
The Chinese artist explores how ways of seeing are now influenced by digital image circulation as an increasingly dominant source of knowledge and information exchange. The exhibition includes a video triptych and installation comprising six ...
20th April to 19th June 2016 - Various Times | Free, mems £1
Works in a variety of media that explore the artist's ongoing interest in cultural exchange and identity.
5th January to 20th December 2016 - Various Times | £1, mems/under 18s/concs Free, Tue Free entry to all
Saturday 28th May 2016 - 12noon | £15, mems £10, concs £12
Informal discussion event for arts professionals.
Thursdays until 10pm | FREE
183 Euston Road, Bloomsbury, London, NW1 2BE
Works by Leonardo da Vinci, Andy Warhol and Martin Parr sit alongside artefacts such as Charles Darwin's whalebone walking stick, Nelson's razor, Napoleon's toothbrush, used Guillotine blades, a DNA-sequencing robot and 19th-century sex toys, in this major cultural venue that combines three galleries - Medicine Man, Medicine Now and Special Exhibitions. Those who want confirmation that science can be this interesting should make the most of the Wellcome Collection's later opening hours on Thursday's where guests can roam the galleries until 10pm. The Blackwell bookshop closes at 9pm on Thursdays but the Peyton & Byrne café also stays open until 10pm, the classic British bakery offering a range of terrines, tarts, pies, soups and salads - provided you're not feeling too squeamish after watching the Collection's fascinating footage of live heart surgery.
Events at Wellcome Collection
14th April to 31st July 2016 | Free
4th February to 16th October 2016 | Free
19th November 2015 to 28th September 2016 - Various Times | Free
Thursdays until 9pm | FREE
77-82 Whitechapel High Street, Tower Hamlets, London, E1 7QX
Britain's first purpose-build arts gallery is renowned both for the beauty of its light, airy space and for embracing the local East End community in its work. Those of you who haven't seen the results of the Whitechapel Gallery's extensive refurbishment - which saw the gallery reopen in 2009 with double the space - can make the most of a late 9pm closure on Thursdays. The gallery does not have a permanent collection, preferring instead to host a constantly evolving programme of works and there is always something free to see. Community projects and retrospective exhibitions now rest alongside landmark examples of contemporary work. A research centre, archives room and café also operate at the gallery, which has in its time housed work by Jackson Pollock, David Hockney, Lucian Freud and Picasso. Top off your late visit with a bite at the Whitechapel Gallery Dining Room, which was relaunched in January 2011 under the stewardship of executive chef Angela Hartnett.
Events at Whitechapel Gallery
12th April to 5th June 2016 - 11am-6pm | Free
An exhibition of the video works Dark Content Episodes 1, 2, 3 by Eva and Franco Mattes, plus Purgatory by Tor Jorgen Van Eijk.
26th April to 14th August 2016 - Various Times | Free
26th April to 14th August 2016 - Various Times | Free
15th December 2015 to 12th June 2016 - Various Times | Free
19th March to 25th September 2016 - Various Times | Free
Saturday 28th May 2016 - 1pm-6pm | £12.50, concs £10.50
A conference about the limits of performance.
28th May, 4th Jun, 11th Jun, 18th Jun, 25th Jun and 2nd Jul 2016 - 2pm-4pm | £200
Thursdays & Fridays until 9pm | FREE
St Martin's Place, London, WC2H 0HE
Single-handedly responsible for making portraiture hip, the National Portrait Gallery houses portraits of significant figures from the late 15th century to the present day - with a large slant on contemporary celebrities, musicians, sportsmen, artists and prominent figures. Open until 9pm on both Thursdays and Fridays, this isn't the place to come for serious works of exceptional merit (pop next door for that) but it's a lot of fun - and where else in London could you hope to find The Beatles, Henry VIII, Sir Richard Branson and JK Rowling all hanging out together? That said, critically acclaimed self-portraits by William Hogarth, Sir Joshua Reynolds and other notable British artists are also displayed alongside the 10,000 portraits of everyone from statesmen to showbiz stars and media barons. Also, the annual BP Portrait Award and Taylor Wessing Photographic Portrait Prize are held in the Gallery and are both the most prestigious open competitions for portrait painting and photography in the world.
Events at National Portrait Gallery
Friday 27th May 2016 - 6.30pm-8.30pm | Free
An informal class suitable for everyone from complete beginners to accomplished artists.
Friday 27th May 2016 - 6.30pm-8.30pm | £9, concs/mems £7
Drawing session with artist Andy Pankhurst.
Friday 27th May 2016 - 6.30pm | Free
Musical settings of Shakespeare texts and stories of love by composers from around the world.
Friday 27th May 2016 - 7.30pm | Free
A half-hour talk by a member of the Gallery's Visitor Services Team.
17th March to 26th June 2016 | £6 (Adults), £5 (Concessions)
22nd February to 14th August 2016 | Free
18th March to 25th September 2016 - Various Times | Free
Fridays until 8.30pm | FREE
Great Russell Street, Bloomsbury, London, WC1B 3DG
It would take much more than one evening to explore all the nooks and crannies of the vast and indomitable British Museum - but you can get started with special late Friday opening hours at one of the world's oldest museums. Over seven millions objects from all over the globe are housed in this impressive museum of human history and culture (many of the artefacts are stored underneath the museum due to lack of space). Notable objects include the Parthenon Sculptures (also sometimes called the Elgin Marbles), the Rosetta Stone, Lidlow Man, the Lewis Chessmann, the Sutton Hoo Ship Burial and Mildenhall treasures, and the Portland Vase. Oh, and don't forget all those Egyptian mummies and hieroglyphics. The crowning glory of the museum its central hub, the glass domed Great Court designed by Lord Norman Foster - the largest covered public square in Europe. The permanent collections are free but blockbuster temporary exhibitions - such as the Life and Death in Pompeii and Herculaneum exhibition in 2013 - are ticketed and extremely popular. The British Museum's late Fridays are supplemented by tours, special events and food and drink.
Events at British Museum
Friday 27th May 2016 at 2pm and 3pm | Free
Tea-making demonstrations accompanied by a talk.
Friday 27th May 2016 - 1.15pm-2pm | Free
Talk by Peter Higgs.
21st April to 14th August 2016 | £10, children under 16 Free
19th May to 27th November 2016 | £16.50, children under 16 Free
21st January to 14th August 2016 | Free
21st January to 14th August 2016 - Various Times | Free
1st October 2015 to 31st December 2016 - 10am-5.30pm | Free
Fridays until 9pm | FREE
Trafalgar Square, Westminster, London, WC2N 5DN
Get your Friday night out in the West End off to a cultural start by benefitting from the National Gallery's late night Fridays until 9pm every week. The neo-classical columns and William Wilkins portico dominate Trafalgar Square and houses some of the finest examples of European art, ranging from 1260 to 1900, amid the 2,300 paintings filling its halls and rooms. Holbein's 'The Ambassadors', 'The Hay Wain' by Constable, and Jan Van Eyck's 'Arnolfini Marriage' are just some of the major attractions. Works on display also include those of Botticelli, Monet, Constable, Van Gogh and Rembrandt. Friday's late opening often includes tours, talks and musical events, while there's also a superb café and the wonderful National Dining Rooms in the Salisbury Wing, serving British classical cuisine and boasting floor-to-ceiling windows with lavish views over Trafalgar Square.
Events at National Gallery
Friday 27th May 2016 - 6.30pm-7.30pm | Free booking essential
6th April to 29th August 2016 - Various Times | Free
11th May to 30th October 2016 | Free
Sunday 29th May 2016 at 10.30am-11am and 11.30am-12noon | Free
Stories inspired by pictures in the National Gallery.
29th May, 5th Jun, 12th Jun, 19th Jun and 26th Jun 2016 - Various Times | Free booking essential
Storytelling sessions for 2-5 year olds.
Fridays until 10pm | From £11 (Some exhibitions FREE)
Burlington House, Mayfair, London, W1J 0BD
Renowned for its annual Summer Exhibition, the Royal Academy of Arts is located in Lord Burlington's spectacular London palace and houses both the country's premier art school and a brilliantly curated program of exhibitions. Blockbuster exhibitions in the Sackler Wing or main galleries are ticketed and often booked up well in advance, but shows in the John Madejski Fine Rooms are drawn from the RA's holdings - ranging from Constable to Hockney - and are free. In 2012, the RA expanded into the neighbouring 6 Burlington Gardens space immediately behind the established home on Piccadilly. Late openings at both venues take place on Fridays where guests can browse the collections until 10pm.
Events at Royal Academy of Arts
Friday 27th May 2016 - 7pm-7.30pm | Free
A team of architects and urban designers explain their proposal for civic justice hubs.
Friday 27th May 2016 - 7pm-7.30pm | Free
The architects discuss their proposal for civic justice hubs directly accessible to local communities.
26th to 29th May 2016 - Various Times | Free
On display are the results of the contest organised by the RA that launched in July 2015.
26th May & 27th May and 31st May to 3rd Jun 2016 - Various Times | Free, plus adm £3, under 16s & mems Free
Evocative book illustrations that reveal the artist's mastery of black and white line, as well as his impish sense of the absurd. Printed ephemera and First Editions form the RSA Collection complement drawings from the ...
12th March to 5th June 2016 | £11.50 (Adults), Concessions available, Free (Under 16s)
26th to 29th May 2016 - Various Times | £3
Saturday 28th May 2016 - 1pm-4pm | Free
Explore the academies architectural heritage including the historic John Madejski fine rooms.
Selected Fridays until 10pm | FREE (except selected exhibitions)
Millbank, Westminster, London, SW1P 4RG
Tube: Pimlico Station
Late at Tate Britain provides guests the ideal opportunity to explore the gallery's extensive collection and temporary exhibitions after hours, with vibrant performances, music, film screenings, talks and a late bar running alongside the extended opening hours. Dedicated to showcasing Britain's artistic talent, Tate Britain is home to the greatest collection of British art from 1500 to the present day. Since it opened in 1897, the collection has expanded to include works from Blake, Rossetti, Spencer and Stubbs. It also hosts the Turner Prize - the contemporary art world's premier award. An eagerly anticipated chronological rehang of the museum's permanent collection was unveiled in May 2013. These special Late at Tate nights usually take place around four times a year, with openings roughly every season - Spring, Summer, Autumn and Winter.
Events at Tate Britain
25th April to 15th July 2016 - 10am-6pm | Free
27th April to 17th July 2016 - 10am-6pm | Free
11th May to 25th September 2016 | Adult £18, concession £16
12th April to 29th August 2016 | Adult £12, concession £10.50
26th April to 9th October 2016
26th April to 9th October 2016 - 10am-6pm | Free
9th November 2015 to 19th June 2016 - 10am-6pm | Free
Fridays in June & July | £25
If you're a party animal then head to London Zoo for after-hours entertainment, which is laid on every Friday night in June and July. The night's entertainment ranges from improvised comedy in the aquarium, Twisted Cabaret in the amphitheatre, a silent disco or a street food festival. They also encourage you to bring out your inner-animal with the face-painting, animal masks and silly outfits provided. But the real stars of the show are the animals who are the subject of various talks and demonstrations, not to forget the all-important feeding time. Zoo Lates! is an adults-only event, not suitable for under 18s. It also includes entry to the Tiger Territory, the brand new five star £3.6 million home for the zoo's Sumatran tigers.
Friday & Saturday until 10pm | Selected exhibitions from £11 (Some FREE)
Bankside Power Station, 25 Sumner Street, Bankside, London, SE1 9TG
Located along the banks of the River Thames in the former Bankside Power Station - originally designed by Sir Giles Gilbert Scott in 1947, the architect of Battersea Power Station - Tate Modern has been integral to London's cultural scene since opening to great acclaim in 2000. The gallery - which is considered the most popular in Europe - pays homage to art from 1900 to the present day while the awesome Turbine Hall creates a stunning entrance and a vast space, used to display temporary installations on a grand scale. There are three levels of galleries enclosed by a spectacular two-storey glass roof that provides fantastic views of London and a great cafe. Full of the jokey eccentricities of contemporary art, it's one of the few art galleries that children and teenagers will enjoy, but it also offers the full set of iconic twentieth century artists, from Matisse to Moore, Dali to Picasso. Tate Modern is also generous in its opening hours, with its doors staying open until 10pm on both Fridays and Saturdays throughout the year.
Events at Tate Modern
Friday 27th May 2016 - 6.30pm-8pm | £12, concs £8
A conversation focusing on new materials and matter.
4th May to 21st August 2016 | Adult £16, concession £14
18th February to 12th June 2016 | Adult £14.50, Concession £12.70
9th May to 10th September 2016 - Various Times | phone for prices
26th to 31st May 2016 | phone for prices
11th January to 31st December 2016 - Various Times | Free
11th January to 31st December 2016 - Various Times | Free
Fridays until 10pm | FREE
Cromwell Road, South Kensington, London, SW7 2RL
Tube: South Kensington Station
Initially founded in 1852 to inspire and educate British designers and manufacturers, the Victoria and Albert Museum houses over four million items spanning centuries and hundreds of cultures. The stunning world-famous collection covers European, Indian, Chinese, Korean, Japanese and Islamic artefacts ranging from ceramics, glass, metalwork and sculpture to costume, armour, weaponry and furniture. Among the museum's highlights are the dress collection which spans the 17th century to present day haute-couture; and the four-poster, Jacobean Great Bed of Ware, immortalized by Shakespeare in 'Twelfth Night'. Selected galleries remain open until 10pm every Friday, while a series of Friday Lates - held on the last Friday of the month (except December) - comprise of largely free events, workshops and entertainment based around a different theme.
Events at Victoria and Albert (V & A) Museum
Friday 27th May 2016 - 10am | £35, concs £30, NUS £15
An examination of emerging trends in Japanese design.
Friday 27th May 2016 - 6.30pm-7.30pm | Free
A BSL interpreted talk about the exhibition.
28th April to 30th June 2016 - Various Times | £425, concs £365
27th May, 3rd Jun, 10th Jun, 17th Jun, 24th Jun and 1st Jul 2016 - Various Times | phone for availability
19th March to 3rd July 2016 | £9
5th March to 3rd July 2016 | £15
18th May to 6th November 2016 | Free
Daily in summer until 11pm | FREE
Strand, Covent Garden, London, WC2R 1LA
Tube: Temple Station
While the fabulous Courtauld Gallery and Somerset House's other gallery and exhibition spaces close their doors at 6pm, the spectacular Tudor palace on the banks of the Thames keeps its famous Fountain Court, River Terrace and restored Seaman's Hall open until 11pm in the summertime. Seasonal outdoor activities in the cobbled court with its choreographed fountains include the Summer Series music festival in July, the Film4 Summer Screen open-air cinema fortnight in August and the much-loved Christmas Ice Rink in November and December.
Events at Somerset House
Thursday 7th July 2016 | £29.50 & £49.50, tickets on sale Mar 18, 9am
2015 was a fantastic year for Australian four-piece Hiatus Kaiyote, receiving their second Grammy nomination and performing sell out shows across the world. And 2016 is turning out to be just as memorable as the ...more
Saturday 9th July 2016 | £29.50 & £49.50
The Mercury Prize-winning poet and musician from north London sings of love and loss, despair and hope, pride and self-belief in his haunting debut album At Least For Now. "There are echoes of French-language chansons ...more
Sunday 10th July 2016 | £29.50 & £49.50
She appeared at the Proms two years in a row, in 2013 and 2014, and now Laura Mvula returns to London to headline a gig at Somerset House. Having sung in a church choir as ...more
Monday 11th July 2016 | £29.50 & £49.50
The Manchester-formed quartet, fronted by the singer Jonathan Higgs, performs art-rock infused indie-pop from the third album Get To Heaven in the outdoor courtyard of Somerset House. "Confusing references to soft-boiled eggs and toad-in-the-hole are ...more
Tuesday 12th July 2016 | £35 & £55
The Derbyshire-born soul and pop-rock singer-songwriter is a heavy smoker, likes to get into brawls, goes tombstoning in Cornwall to blow off steam, and has a sprinkling of scars across his meagre frame to betray ...more
Daily until 10pm | £24.95
The Shard, 96 Tooley Street, Bankside, London, SE1 9SG
Tube: London Bridge Station
Dates: From 01st February 2013
London looks like a city in miniature from The View From The Shard which at 244 metres tall is the highest public viewing platform in Western Europe. Lifts transport members of the public from the ground to levels 68 to 72 where visitors are greeted at the entrance by pictures of over 140 famous Londoners - including The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge as Pearly King and Queen, Kate Moss marrying King Henry VIII and Boris Johnson shining Ken Livingstone's shoes. Around the gallery there are animated maps, interactive displays, video screens and short films giving visitors an insight into London and the surrounding London Bridge area which houses the oldest crossing point over the Thames. But nothing can distract from the stunning views over the city and 40 miles beyond. That means - on a really good day - you can see the sea at Southend in Essex to the east and as far as Reading in Berkshire to the west. See how far you can see when you buy Tickets for View from the Shard.
Until 9m (Apr-Jun), 9.30pm (Jul-Aug), 8.30pm (Sept-Dec) | £18.90
Jubilee Gardens, South Bank, South Bank, London, SE1 7PB
The London Eye elbowed its way onto the capital's tourist scene as one of the statement pieces to mark the turn of the century (see also The Millennium Bridge) and quickly became a definitive part of the London experience. This spectacularly streamlined riverside wheel stands an impressive 135 meters tall and its sleek, modern, totally see-through glass-pods offer an unrivalled 360-degree view of London and beyond. The Houses of Parliament, Canary Wharf, Big Ben, the glorious Thames and Windsor Castle are just a few of the 55-odd attractions that can be admired from the top of the arc. On a clear day the view extends to 25 miles in each direction. It moves at a slow but steady pace, taking 30 minutes to complete its flight. Because of its popularity, there are usually lengthy queues to book tickets and then to board the flight. Save time and book London Eye tickets online in advance. A variety of different ticketing options and packages are available depending on your individual requirements. You can choose to upgrade to a Fast Track ticket, which entitles you to check in just 15 minutes before your flight, or spend the flight in the company of a London guide or a glass of champagne. The flight only lasts 30 minutes and it's bound to be busy but this is still top of the London must-do list.
Daily until midnight | £29.95
1 Piccadilly, , Soho, London, W1J 0DA
"Proudly freaking out families for 90 years," boasts Ripley's Believe It Or Not! on its publicity material. Freaky and yet strangely fascinating, this museum perched above Piccadilly Circus presents over 500 weird, unusual and all-too-real artefacts. There are 30 Ripley's museums worldwide and London's collection, which opened on 20th August 2008, includes a bling-ing Swarovski crystal covered mini motor car, shrunken heads from Ecuador and a two-headed calf. These strange things come from Robert Ripley's fascination for collecting bizarre objects - a hobby he started on his worldwide travels in the 1920s and 1930s. Although this collection can, at times, make your skin crawl it manages to get the balance of intriguing objects and downright disgusting things just right. Judge for yourself - buy tickets to Ripley's Believe It Or Not! here.
IN THIS ARTICLE
Sir John Soane's Museum
Science Museum Lates
Camden Arts Centre
Chelsea Physic Garden
Barbican Art Gallery
Handel House Museum
Institute of Contemporary Arts
National Portrait Gallery
Royal Academy of Arts
Victoria and Albert Museum
The View From The Shard
Ripley's Believe It Or Not!
Top London Venues
London Museums and Galleries
London Entertainment Venues
Historic Houses in London
Sport Venues in London
London Exhibition Centres
Best Spas in London
Dance Venues in London
London Zoos and City Farms
Best London Comedy Clubs
Best Luxury Cinemas in London
London Museums: Late Openings
- London Museums and Galleries
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