London Museums: Late Openings

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British Library

Tuesdays until 8pm | FREE

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British Library
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
Wellcome Collection
Whitechapel Gallery
British Museum
National Gallery
Royal Academy of Arts
Tate Britain
Tate Modern
London Zoo
Victoria and Albert Museum
Somerset House
The View From The Shard
London Eye
Ripley's Believe It Or Not!
 

 

For those of you who are too busy at work during the week and always occupied on the weekends, then try one of London's many museum evening openings or 'lates'. Switch off the TV, forget the gym and instead head out for some nocturnal culture at one of the capital's many museums which keep their doors open late.

 
 

British Library

Tuesdays until 8pm | FREE

96 Euston Road, King's Cross, London, NW1 2DB

Tube: King's Cross Station, Euston Station

 
 

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.

 
 

Events at British Library

Poetry Persicope
Now OnFree Event

27th April to 19th May 2016 - 9.30am-8pm | Free

 
Poetry Persicope British Library 2016-04-272016-05-19 Where:
British Library, 96 Euston Road London, NW1 2DB
Category: Museums

A sound installation featuring a curated selection of poems from 30 European countries, both in their original language and in translation.

What Next For Your Invention: Plan, Prototype Or Protect'

Tuesday 3rd May 2016 - 1pm | £50

 
What Next For Your Invention: Plan, Prototype Or Protect' British Library 2016-05-032016-05-03 Where:
British Library, 96 Euston Road London, NW1 2DB
Category: Museums

A practical workshop to learn the key issues to help you make your product idea a reality.

Shakespeare in Ten Acts Ongoing Editor's Top Pick - Recommended

15th April to 6th September 2016

 
Shakespeare in Ten Acts British Library 2016-04-152016-09-06 Where:
British Library, 96 Euston Road London, NW1 2DB
Category: Museums
Introduction To The Business & IP Centre
On SoonFree Event

Wednesday 4th May 2016 - 10am | Free

 
Introduction To The Business & IP Centre British Library 2016-05-042016-05-04 Where:
British Library, 96 Euston Road London, NW1 2DB
Category: Museums

A practical introduction to these essential resources, events and activities available.

Sacred Texts Of Judaism, Christianity And Islam
On Soon

4th, 11th, 18th and 25th May 2016 - 2pm | four week course £220

 
Sacred Texts Of Judaism, Christianity And Islam British Library 2016-05-042016-05-25 Where:
British Library, 96 Euston Road London, NW1 2DB
Category: Museums

Explore the origins and development of religious texts.

All events at British Library
 
 
 

Sir John Soane's Museum

First Tuesday of the month until 9pm | FREE (first 200 people)

13 Lincoln's Inn Fields, Holborn, London, WC2A 3BP

Tube: Holborn Station, Chancery Lane Station

 
 

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.

 
 
 

Science Museum Lates

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

Leonardo da Vinci: The Mechanics of Genius Ongoing Editor's Top Pick - Recommended

10th February to 4th September 2016 | £10 (Adults), £7 (Concessions)

 
Leonardo da Vinci: The Mechanics of Genius Science Museum 2016-02-102016-09-04 Where:
Science Museum, Exhibition Road London, SW7 2DD
Category: Museums
The Real McCoy Storytelling
On SoonFree Event

1st, 7th & 8th, 14th & 15th and 21st & 22nd May 2016 - 11.30am | Free

 
The Real McCoy Storytelling Science Museum 2016-05-012016-05-22 Where:
Science Museum, Exhibition Road London, SW7 2DD
Category: Museums

An interactive storytelling session.

All events at Science Museum Lates
 
 
 

Camden Arts Centre

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

Franciszka And Stefan Themerson: Books, Camera, Ubu
OngoingFree Event

24th March to 5th June 2016 - 10am-6pm | Free

 
Franciszka And Stefan Themerson: Books, Camera, Ubu Camden Arts Centre 2016-03-242016-06-05 Where:
Camden Arts Centre, Arkwright Road London, NW3 6DH
Category: Art Galleries
Karl Holmqvist: Read Dear
OngoingFree Event

24th March to 5th June 2016 - Various Times | Free

 
Karl Holmqvist: Read Dear Camden Arts Centre 2016-03-242016-06-05 Where:
Camden Arts Centre, Arkwright Road London, NW3 6DH
Category: Art Galleries
The Grantchester Pottery
OngoingFree Event

15th January to 14th June 2016 - Various Times | Free

 
The Grantchester Pottery Camden Arts Centre 2016-01-152016-06-14 Where:
Camden Arts Centre, Arkwright Road London, NW3 6DH
Category: Art Galleries
Youth Collective
On SoonFree Event

2nd April to 30th June 2016 - 2.30pm-5pm | Free

 
Youth Collective Camden Arts Centre 2016-04-022016-06-30 Where:
Camden Arts Centre, Arkwright Road London, NW3 6DH
Category: Art Galleries
Make & Do
On SoonFree Event

1st May, 8th May, 15th May, 22nd May, 29th May and 5th Jun 2016 - 2pm-4.30pm | Free

 
Make & Do Camden Arts Centre 2016-03-272016-06-05 Where:
Camden Arts Centre, Arkwright Road London, NW3 6DH
Category: Art Galleries
All events at Camden Arts Centre
 
 
 

Chelsea Physic Garden

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.

 
 
 

Barbican Art Gallery

Thursdays until 10pm | £8

Silk Street, City, London, EC2 8DS

Tube: Barbican Station, Moorgate Station

 
 

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

Strange and Familiar: Britain as Revealed by International Photographers Ongoing Editor's Top Pick - Recommended

16th March to 19th June 2016

 
Strange and Familiar: Britain as Revealed by International Photographers Barbican Art Gallery 2016-03-162016-06-19 Where:
Barbican Art Gallery, Silk Street London, EC2 8DS
Category: Art Galleries
The Vulgar Editor's Top Pick - Recommended

13th October 2016 to 5th February 2017

 
The Vulgar Barbican Art Gallery 2016-10-132017-02-05 Where:
Barbican Art Gallery, Silk Street London, EC2 8DS
Category: Art Galleries
All events at Barbican Art Gallery
 
 
 

Handel House Museum

Thursdays until 8pm | £6

25 Brook Street, Mayfair, London, W1K 4HB

Tube: Bond Street Station, Oxford Circus Station

 
 

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).

 
 
 

Institute of Contemporary Arts

Thursdays until 9pm | FREE (except specific exhibitions)

12 Carlton House Terrace, The Mall, St James's, London, SW1Y 5AH

Tube: Piccadilly Circus Station, Charing Cross Station

 
 

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)

Guan Xiao
Now OnFree Event

20th April to 15th May 2016 - Various Times | Free

 
Guan Xiao Institute of Contemporary Arts (ICA) 2016-04-202016-05-15 Where:
Institute of Contemporary Arts (ICA), 12 Carlton House Terrace, The Mall London, SW1Y 5AH
Category: Art Galleries

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 ...

Punx Not Dead: Cinema And Society After Punk
Now On

Tuesday 3rd and Tuesday 10th May 2016 - 7pm | £3-£6

 
Punx Not Dead: Cinema And Society After Punk Institute of Contemporary Arts (ICA) 2016-03-292016-05-10 Where:
Institute of Contemporary Arts (ICA), 12 Carlton House Terrace, The Mall London, SW1Y 5AH
Category: Art Galleries

This presentation captures the echoes of the political, social and musical upheaval in the UK and the USA that began in 1978-79.

Dennis Morris: PiL - First Issue To Metal Box
Now On

23rd March to 15th May 2016 - Various Times | Free, mems £1

 
Dennis Morris: PiL - First Issue To Metal Box Institute of Contemporary Arts (ICA) 2016-03-232016-05-15 Where:
Institute of Contemporary Arts (ICA), 12 Carlton House Terrace, The Mall London, SW1Y 5AH
Category: Art Galleries

The artist's rarely seen photographs and ephemera relating to the early stages of the band's design from 1978-79 with a focus on the design of the album Metal Box.

Martine Syms: Fact & Trouble
Now On

20th April to 19th June 2016 - Various Times | Free, mems £1

 
Martine Syms: Fact & Trouble Institute of Contemporary Arts (ICA) 2016-04-202016-06-19 Where:
Institute of Contemporary Arts (ICA), 12 Carlton House Terrace, The Mall London, SW1Y 5AH
Category: Art Galleries

Works in a variety of media that explore the artist's ongoing interest in cultural exchange and identity.

Fig-2
Ongoing

5th January to 20th December 2016 - Various Times | £1, mems/under 18s/concs Free, Tue Free entry to all

 
Fig-2 Institute of Contemporary Arts (ICA) 2016-01-052016-12-20 Where:
Institute of Contemporary Arts (ICA), 12 Carlton House Terrace, The Mall London, SW1Y 5AH
Category: Art Galleries
The Rise, Fall And Rise Of Vinyl Records
On Soon

Wednesday 4th May 2016 - 6.30pm | £10, mems £7, concs £8

 
The Rise, Fall And Rise Of Vinyl Records Institute of Contemporary Arts (ICA) 2016-05-042016-05-04 Where:
Institute of Contemporary Arts (ICA), 12 Carlton House Terrace, The Mall London, SW1Y 5AH
Category: Art Galleries

A discussion about vinyl album cover design.

A Conversation With Producers And Commissioners
On SoonFree Event

Thursday 5th May 2016 - 6.30pm | Free

 
A Conversation With Producers And Commissioners Institute of Contemporary Arts (ICA) 2016-05-052016-05-05 Where:
Institute of Contemporary Arts (ICA), 12 Carlton House Terrace, The Mall London, SW1Y 5AH
Category: Art Galleries

A discussion about the world of music video, film and TV commissioning.

All events at Institute of Contemporary Arts
 
 
 

Wellcome Collection

Thursdays until 10pm | FREE

183 Euston Road, Bloomsbury, London, NW1 2BE

Tube: Euston Square Station, Euston Station, Warren Street Station

 
 

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

This Is A Voice OngoingFree Event Editor's Top Pick - Recommended

14th April to 31st July 2016 | Free

 
This Is A Voice Wellcome Collection 2016-04-142016-07-31 Where:
Wellcome Collection, 183 Euston Road London, NW1 2BE
Category: Art Galleries
States of Mind: Tracing the Edges of Consciousness OngoingFree Event Editor's Top Pick - Recommended

4th February to 16th October 2016 | Free

 
States of Mind: Tracing the Edges of Consciousness Wellcome Collection 2016-02-042016-10-16 Where:
Wellcome Collection, 183 Euston Road London, NW1 2BE
Category: Art Galleries
Tibet's Secret Temple
OngoingFree Event

19th November 2015 to 28th September 2016 - Various Times | Free

 
Tibet's Secret Temple Wellcome Collection 2015-11-192016-09-28 Where:
Wellcome Collection, 183 Euston Road London, NW1 2BE
Category: Art Galleries
All events at Wellcome Collection
 
 
 

Whitechapel Gallery

Thursdays until 9pm | FREE

77-82 Whitechapel High Street, Tower Hamlets, London, E1 7QX

Tube: Aldgate East Station, Aldgate East Underground Station, Aldgate Station

 
 

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

Eva & Franco Mattes And Tor Jorgen Van Eijk
Now OnFree Event

12th April to 5th June 2016 - 11am-6pm | Free

 
Eva & Franco Mattes And Tor Jorgen Van Eijk Whitechapel Gallery 2016-04-122016-06-05 Where:
Whitechapel Gallery, 77-82 Whitechapel High Street London, E1 7QX
Category: Art Galleries

An exhibition of the video works Dark Content Episodes 1, 2, 3 by Eva and Franco Mattes, plus Purgatory by Tor Jorgen Van Eijk.

Electronic Superhighway Ongoing Editor's Top Pick - Recommended

29th January to 15th May 2016 | £13.50 (Adults inc Gift Aid donation) £11.95 (without Gift Aid)

 
Electronic Superhighway Whitechapel Gallery 2016-01-292016-05-15 Where:
Whitechapel Gallery, 77-82 Whitechapel High Street London, E1 7QX
Category: Art Galleries
Barjeel Art Foundation Collection: Imperfect Chronology – Mapping the Contemporary I
OngoingFree Event

26th April to 14th August 2016 - Various Times | Free

 
Barjeel Art Foundation Collection: Imperfect Chronology – Mapping the Contemporary I Whitechapel Gallery 2016-04-262016-08-14 Where:
Whitechapel Gallery, 77-82 Whitechapel High Street London, E1 7QX
Category: Art Galleries
Harun Farocki: Parallel I-IV (2012-14)
OngoingFree Event

15th December 2015 to 12th June 2016 - Various Times | Free

 
Harun Farocki: Parallel I-IV (2012-14) Whitechapel Gallery 2015-12-152016-06-12 Where:
Whitechapel Gallery, 77-82 Whitechapel High Street London, E1 7QX
Category: Art Galleries
Imprint 93
OngoingFree Event

19th March to 25th September 2016 - Various Times | Free

 
Imprint 93 Whitechapel Gallery 2016-03-192016-09-25 Where:
Whitechapel Gallery, 77-82 Whitechapel High Street London, E1 7QX
Category: Art Galleries
All events at Whitechapel Gallery
 
 
 

National Portrait Gallery

Thursdays & Fridays until 9pm | FREE

St Martin's Place, London, WC2H 0HE

Tube: Leicester Square Station, Charing Cross Station, Piccadilly Circus Station, Embankment Underground Station, Covent Garden Station

 
 

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

Leon Golub Powerplay: The Political Portraits
OngoingFree Event

18th March to 25th September 2016 - Various Times | Free

 
Leon Golub Powerplay: The Political Portraits National Portrait Gallery 2016-03-182016-09-25 Where:
National Portrait Gallery, St Martin's Place London, WC2H 0HE
Category: Art Galleries
Winston Churchill In Photographs
OngoingFree Event

27th October 2015 to 5th June 2016 - Various Times | Free

 
Winston Churchill In Photographs National Portrait Gallery 2015-10-272016-06-05 Where:
National Portrait Gallery, St Martin's Place London, WC2H 0HE
Category: Art Galleries
National Portrait Gallery
OngoingFree Event

1st January to 31st December 2016 - Various Times | Free

 
National Portrait Gallery National Portrait Gallery 2016-01-012016-12-31 Where:
National Portrait Gallery, St Martin's Place London, WC2H 0HE
Category: Art Galleries
Portrait Of The Day
Free Event

Tuesday 3rd May 2016 - 12.30pm | Free

 
Portrait Of The Day National Portrait Gallery 2016-05-032016-05-03 Where:
National Portrait Gallery, St Martin's Place London, WC2H 0HE
Category: Art Galleries

A half-hour talk by a member of the Gallery's Visitor Services Team.

Vogue 100: A Century of Style Ongoing Editor's Top Pick - Recommended

11th February to 22nd May 2016

 
Vogue 100: A Century of Style National Portrait Gallery 2016-02-112016-05-22 Where:
National Portrait Gallery, St Martin's Place London, WC2H 0HE
Category: Art Galleries
Russia and the Arts: The Age of Tolstoy and Tchaikovsky Ongoing Editor's Top Pick - Recommended

17th March to 26th June 2016 | £6 (Adults), £5 (Concessions)

 
Russia and the Arts: The Age of Tolstoy and Tchaikovsky National Portrait Gallery 2016-03-172016-06-26 Where:
National Portrait Gallery, St Martin's Place London, WC2H 0HE
Category: Art Galleries
Celebrating Charlotte Bronte 1816-1855 OngoingFree Event Editor's Top Pick - Recommended

22nd February to 14th August 2016 | Free

 
Celebrating Charlotte Bronte 1816-1855 National Portrait Gallery 2016-02-222016-08-14 Where:
National Portrait Gallery, St Martin's Place London, WC2H 0HE
Category: Art Galleries
All events at National Portrait Gallery
 
 
 

British Museum

Fridays until 8.30pm | FREE

Great Russell Street, Bloomsbury, London, WC1B 3DG

Tube: Tottenham Court Road Station, Russell Square Station, Holborn Station

 
 

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

Krishna In The Garden Of Assam: The Cultural Context Of An Indian Textile
OngoingFree Event

21st January to 14th August 2016 - Various Times | Free

 
Krishna In The Garden Of Assam: The Cultural Context Of An Indian Textile British Museum 2016-01-212016-08-14 Where:
British Museum, Great Russell Street London, WC1B 3DG
Category: Museums
The Waddesdon Bequest: A Rothschild Renaissance
OngoingFree Event

1st October 2015 to 31st December 2016 - 10am-5.30pm | Free

 
The Waddesdon Bequest: A Rothschild Renaissance British Museum 2015-10-012016-12-31 Where:
British Museum, Great Russell Street London, WC1B 3DG
Category: Museums
Sicily: Culture and Conquest Ongoing Editor's Top Pick - Recommended

21st April to 14th August 2016 | £10, children under 16 Free

 
Sicily: Culture and Conquest British Museum 2016-04-212016-08-14 Where:
British Museum, Great Russell Street London, WC1B 3DG
Category: Museums
Light, Time, Legacy: Francis Towne's Watercolours of Rome OngoingFree Event Editor's Top Pick - Recommended

21st January to 14th August 2016 | Free

 
Light, Time, Legacy: Francis Towne's Watercolours of Rome British Museum 2016-01-212016-08-14 Where:
British Museum, Great Russell Street London, WC1B 3DG
Category: Museums
The Age Of Enlightenment: An Introduction To Room 1
On SoonFree Event

Wednesday 4th May 2016 - 1.15pm-2pm | Free

 
The Age Of Enlightenment: An Introduction To Room 1 British Museum 2016-05-042016-05-04 Where:
British Museum, Great Russell Street London, WC1B 3DG
Category: Museums

Talk by Henry Flynn.

Unearthing The Canaanites: British Museum Excavations In The Jordan Valley
On SoonFree Event

Thursday 5th May 2016 - 1.15pm-2pm | Free

 
Unearthing The Canaanites: British Museum Excavations In The Jordan Valley British Museum 2016-05-052016-05-05 Where:
British Museum, Great Russell Street London, WC1B 3DG
Category: Museums

Talk by James Fraser, British Museum.

All events at British Museum
 
 
 

National Gallery

Fridays until 9pm | FREE

Trafalgar Square, Westminster, London, WC2N 5DN

Tube: Charing Cross Station, Leicester Square Station, Embankment Underground Station, Piccadilly Circus Station, Covent Garden Station

 
 

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

Dutch Flowers
OngoingFree Event

6th April to 29th August 2016 - Various Times | Free

 
Dutch Flowers National Gallery 2016-04-062016-08-29 Where:
National Gallery, Trafalgar Square London, WC2N 5DN
Category: Art Galleries
Delacroix, Chopin, And The Salon
Free Event

Tuesday 3rd May 2016 - 1pm-1.45pm | Free

 
Delacroix, Chopin, And The Salon National Gallery 2016-05-032016-05-03 Where:
National Gallery, Trafalgar Square London, WC2N 5DN
Category: Art Galleries

Writer and broadcaster Gavin Plumley and pianist Sholto Kynoch explore the salon culture of Paris

Delacroix and the Rise of Modern Art Ongoing Editor's Top Pick - Recommended

17th February to 22nd May 2016 | Adult £14, Senior £12, Student £7

 
Delacroix and the Rise of Modern Art National Gallery 2016-02-172016-05-22 Where:
National Gallery, Trafalgar Square London, WC2N 5DN
Category: Art Galleries
Beauty And The Male: Antonio And Piero Del Pollaiuolo's 'Martyrdom Of Saint Sebastian
On SoonFree Event

Wednesday 4th May 2016 - 1pm-1.30pm | Free

 
Beauty And The Male: Antonio And Piero Del Pollaiuolo's 'Martyrdom Of Saint Sebastian National Gallery 2016-05-042016-05-04 Where:
National Gallery, Trafalgar Square London, WC2N 5DN
Category: Art Galleries

A talk on attitudes to male beauty in art.

Welcome Wednesdays
On SoonFree Event

Wednesday 4th and Wednesday 11th May 2016 at 10.30am-11.10am, 11.45am-12.25pm and 1pm-1.30pm | booking essential Free

 
Welcome Wednesdays National Gallery 2016-05-042016-05-11 Where:
National Gallery, Trafalgar Square London, WC2N 5DN
Category: Art Galleries

Messy play and storytelling for under 5s.

Stories Of Art: Module Three
On Soon

4th, 11th and 18th May 2016 - 2pm-4pm | £100, mems £70, concs £80

 
Stories Of Art: Module Three National Gallery 2016-04-132016-05-18 Where:
National Gallery, Trafalgar Square London, WC2N 5DN
Category: Art Galleries

A tutored session on the history of 17th-century European painting.

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Royal Academy of Arts

Fridays until 10pm | From £11 (Some exhibitions FREE)

Burlington House, Mayfair, London, W1J 0BD

Tube: Green Park Station, Piccadilly Circus Station

 
 

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

Urban Jigsaw
Now OnFree Event

27th April to 29th May 2016 - Various Times | Free

 
Urban Jigsaw Royal Academy of Arts 2016-04-272016-05-29 Where:
Royal Academy of Arts, Burlington House London, W1J 0BD
Category: Art Galleries

On display are the results of the contest organised by the RA that launched in July 2015.

Collecting Craft And The Market For Making: Panel Discussion

Tuesday 3rd May 2016 - 6pm-8pm | £20, adv booking required

 
Collecting Craft And The Market For Making: Panel Discussion Royal Academy of Arts 2016-05-032016-05-03 Where:
Royal Academy of Arts, Burlington House London, W1J 0BD
Category: Art Galleries

Explore the current state of craft with speakers including Mark Hampson and Martina Margetts.

William Heath Robinson's Life Of Line
Now On

26th April to 3rd June 2016 - Various Times | Free, plus adm £3, under 16s & mems Free

 
William Heath Robinson's Life Of Line Royal Academy of Arts 2016-04-262016-06-03 Where:
Royal Academy of Arts, Burlington House London, W1J 0BD
Category: Art Galleries

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 ...

In the Age of Giorgione Ongoing Editor's Top Pick - Recommended

12th March to 5th June 2016 | £11.50 (Adults), Concessions available, Free (Under 16s)

 
In the Age of Giorgione Royal Academy of Arts 2016-03-122016-06-05 Where:
Royal Academy of Arts, Burlington House London, W1J 0BD
Category: Art Galleries
Ann Christopher RA: Drawing The Lines of Time
Ongoing

25th February to 29th May 2016 - Various Times | £3

 
Ann Christopher RA: Drawing The Lines of Time Royal Academy of Arts 2016-02-252016-05-29 Where:
Royal Academy of Arts, Burlington House London, W1J 0BD
Category: Art Galleries
Olafur Eliasson In Conversation With Tim Marlow
On Soon

Wednesday 4th May 2016 - 6.30pm-7.30pm | £16, concs £8

 
Olafur Eliasson In Conversation With Tim Marlow Royal Academy of Arts 2016-05-042016-05-04 Where:
Royal Academy of Arts, Burlington House London, W1J 0BD
Category: Art Galleries

The artist presents The Royal Academy Schools Annual Lecture.

The London Original Print Fair On Soon Editor's Top Pick - Recommended

5th, 6th, 7th and 8th May 2016 | £12 (Adults), £8 (Concessions)

 
The London Original Print Fair Royal Academy of Arts 2016-05-052016-05-08 Where:
Royal Academy of Arts, Burlington House London, W1J 0BD
Category: Art Galleries

A week later than usual, the London Original Print Fair, the world's longest running specialist fair dedicated to prints, opens at the Royal Academy of Arts gathering 50 of the world's leading print dealers together ...more

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Tate Britain

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

30 Minutes On Constable
OngoingFree Event

21st March to 30th May 2016 - 1.15pm | Free

 
30 Minutes On Constable Tate Britain 2016-03-212016-05-30 Where:
Tate Britain, Millbank London, SW1P 4RG
Category: Art Galleries
Chloe Cooper: Bronzin' (Totally Bronze)
OngoingFree Event

25th April to 15th July 2016 - 10am-6pm | Free

 
Chloe Cooper: Bronzin' (Totally Bronze) Tate Britain 2016-04-252016-07-15 Where:
Tate Britain, Millbank London, SW1P 4RG
Category: Art Galleries
BP Spotlight: Shoot Shoot Shoot: The London Film-Makers' Co-operative 1966-1976
OngoingFree Event

27th April to 17th July 2016 - 10am-6pm | Free

 
BP Spotlight: Shoot Shoot Shoot: The London Film-Makers' Co-operative 1966-1976 Tate Britain 2016-04-272016-07-17 Where:
Tate Britain, Millbank London, SW1P 4RG
Category: Art Galleries
Pablo Bronstein: Historical Dances In An Antique Setting
OngoingFree Event

26th April to 9th October 2016 - 10am-6pm | Free

 
Pablo Bronstein: Historical Dances In An Antique Setting Tate Britain 2016-04-262016-10-09 Where:
Tate Britain, Millbank London, SW1P 4RG
Category: Art Galleries
Vanilla And Concrete
OngoingFree Event

9th November 2015 to 19th June 2016 - 10am-6pm | Free

 
Vanilla And Concrete Tate Britain 2015-11-092016-06-19 Where:
Tate Britain, Millbank London, SW1P 4RG
Category: Art Galleries
BP Spotlight: Art And Alcohol
OngoingFree Event

16th November 2015 to 22nd September 2016 - 10am-6pm | Free

 
BP Spotlight: Art And Alcohol Tate Britain 2015-11-162016-09-22 Where:
Tate Britain, Millbank London, SW1P 4RG
Category: Art Galleries
Bp Spotlight: Hockney's Double Portraits
OngoingFree Event

19th October 2015 to 30th September 2016 - 10am-6pm | Free

 
Bp Spotlight: Hockney's Double Portraits Tate Britain 2015-10-192016-09-30 Where:
Tate Britain, Millbank London, SW1P 4RG
Category: Art Galleries
All events at Tate Britain
 
 
 

London Zoo

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.

 
 
 

Tate Modern

Friday & Saturday until 10pm | Selected exhibitions from £11 (Some FREE)

Bankside Power Station, 25 Sumner Street, Bankside, London, SE1 9TG

Tube: Blackfriars Underground Station

 
 

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

Nordic Art And Its Discontents
Ongoing

26th November 2015 to 31st May 2016 | phone for prices

 
Nordic Art And Its Discontents Tate Modern 2015-11-262016-05-31 Where:
Tate Modern, Bankside Power Station, 25 Sumner Street London, SE1 9TG
Category: Art Galleries
Artist Rooms: Phyllida Barlow
OngoingFree Event

11th January to 31st December 2016 - Various Times | Free

 
Artist Rooms: Phyllida Barlow Tate Modern 2016-01-112016-12-31 Where:
Tate Modern, Bankside Power Station, 25 Sumner Street London, SE1 9TG
Category: Art Galleries
Assemblage
OngoingFree Event

11th January to 31st December 2016 - Various Times | Free

 
Assemblage Tate Modern 2016-01-112016-12-31 Where:
Tate Modern, Bankside Power Station, 25 Sumner Street London, SE1 9TG
Category: Art Galleries
Between Man And Matter
OngoingFree Event

11th January to 31st December 2016 - Various Times | Free

 
Between Man And Matter Tate Modern 2016-01-112016-12-31 Where:
Tate Modern, Bankside Power Station, 25 Sumner Street London, SE1 9TG
Category: Art Galleries
Expanded Painting
OngoingFree Event

11th January to 31st December 2016 - Various Times | Free

 
Expanded Painting Tate Modern 2016-01-112016-12-31 Where:
Tate Modern, Bankside Power Station, 25 Sumner Street London, SE1 9TG
Category: Art Galleries
Gustav Metzger
OngoingFree Event

11th January to 31st December 2016 - Various Times | Free

 
Gustav Metzger Tate Modern 2016-01-112016-12-31 Where:
Tate Modern, Bankside Power Station, 25 Sumner Street London, SE1 9TG
Category: Art Galleries
Louise Nevelson
OngoingFree Event

11th January to 31st December 2016 - Various Times | Free

 
Louise Nevelson Tate Modern 2016-01-112016-12-31 Where:
Tate Modern, Bankside Power Station, 25 Sumner Street London, SE1 9TG
Category: Art Galleries
All events at Tate Modern
 
 
 

Victoria and Albert Museum

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

From Word To Image And Back Again: Iconography And Symbolism In Medieval Art
Ongoing

2nd May, 9th May, 16th May, 23rd May, 30th May, 6th Jun and 13th Jun 2016 | £355, concs £315

 
From Word To Image And Back Again: Iconography And Symbolism In Medieval Art Victoria and Albert (V & A) Museum 2016-04-112016-06-13 Where:
Victoria and Albert (V & A) Museum, Cromwell Road London, SW7 2RL
Category: Museums
Unearthed: A History Of Gardens From Medieval To Modern
Ongoing

28th April to 30th June 2016 - Various Times | £425, concs £365

 
Unearthed: A History Of Gardens From Medieval To Modern Victoria and Albert (V & A) Museum 2016-04-282016-06-30 Where:
Victoria and Albert (V & A) Museum, Cromwell Road London, SW7 2RL
Category: Museums
Alison Britton: Conent And Form
OngoingFree Event

26th January to 4th September 2016 - Various Times | Free

 
Alison Britton: Conent And Form Victoria and Albert (V & A) Museum 2016-01-262016-09-04 Where:
Victoria and Albert (V & A) Museum, Cromwell Road London, SW7 2RL
Category: Museums
Art And The City: Ancient To Modern 2015-2016
Ongoing

21st September 2015 to 18th July 2016 - 11.10am-3.30pm | £70, concs £55, per day

 
Art And The City: Ancient To Modern 2015-2016 Victoria and Albert (V & A) Museum 2015-09-212016-07-18 Where:
Victoria and Albert (V & A) Museum, Cromwell Road London, SW7 2RL
Category: Museums
Display: Exhibition Road Building
OngoingFree Event

27th November 2015 to 15th October 2016 - 10am-5.45pm | Free

 
Display: Exhibition Road Building Victoria and Albert (V & A) Museum 2015-11-272016-10-15 Where:
Victoria and Albert (V & A) Museum, Cromwell Road London, SW7 2RL
Category: Museums
Silver Speaks
OngoingFree Event

8th March 2016 to 31st January 2017 - 10am-5.45pm | Free

 
Silver Speaks Victoria and Albert (V & A) Museum 2016-03-082017-01-31 Where:
Victoria and Albert (V & A) Museum, Cromwell Road London, SW7 2RL
Category: Museums
A History Of Photography: The Body
OngoingFree Event

11th March 2016 to 19th February 2017 - Various Times | Free

 
A History Of Photography: The Body Victoria and Albert (V & A) Museum 2016-03-112017-02-19 Where:
Victoria and Albert (V & A) Museum, Cromwell Road London, SW7 2RL
Category: Museums
All events at Victoria and Albert Museum
 
 
 

Somerset House

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

Hiatus Kaiyote Editor's Top Pick - Recommended

Thursday 7th July 2016 | £29.50 & £49.50, tickets on sale Mar 18, 9am

 
Hiatus Kaiyote Somerset House 2016-07-072016-07-07 Where:
Somerset House, Strand London, WC2R 1LA
Category: Historic Buildings

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

Paul Heaton & Jacqui Abbott Editor's Top Pick - Recommended

Friday 8th July 2016 | £35 & £55, tickets on sale Mar 18, 9am

 
Paul Heaton & Jacqui Abbott Somerset House 2016-07-082016-07-08 Where:
Somerset House, Strand London, WC2R 1LA
Category: Historic Buildings

Paul Heaton and Jacqui Abbott, formerly of The Beautiful South, perform songs from What Have We Become, the album which saw them reunite for the first time since the multi-million selling days of The Beautiful ...more

Benjamin Clementine Editor's Top Pick - Recommended

Saturday 9th July 2016 | £29.50 & £49.50

 
Benjamin Clementine Somerset House 2016-07-092016-07-09 Where:
Somerset House, Strand London, WC2R 1LA
Category: Historic Buildings

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

Laura Mvula Editor's Top Pick - Recommended

Sunday 10th July 2016 | £29.50 & £49.50

 
Laura Mvula Somerset House 2016-07-102016-07-10 Where:
Somerset House, Strand London, WC2R 1LA
Category: Historic Buildings

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

Everything Everything Editor's Top Pick - Recommended

Monday 11th July 2016 | £29.50 & £49.50

 
Everything Everything Somerset House 2016-07-112016-07-11 Where:
Somerset House, Strand London, WC2R 1LA
Category: Historic Buildings

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

All events at Somerset House
 
 
 

The View From The Shard

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.

 
 
 

London Eye

Until 9m (Apr-Jun), 9.30pm (Jul-Aug), 8.30pm (Sept-Dec) | £18.90

Jubilee Gardens, South Bank, South Bank, London, SE1 7PB

Tube: Embankment Underground Station, Westminster Station, Waterloo Station

 
 

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.

 
 
 

Ripley's Believe It Or Not!

Daily until midnight | £29.95

1 Piccadilly, , Soho, London, W1J 0DA

Tube: Piccadilly Circus Station, Leicester Square Station

 
 

"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.

 
 
 
 
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