Great Britain has some of the most interesting and educational museums in Europe. Many of the most significant museums are in London, so be sure to allow yourself enough time in London to visit these world-class museums.
Containing more than 2,200 paintings including works by Picasso, Da Vinci, Eycke, Lippi, Renoir, and many more, the National Gallery is one of England’s leading art museums. Focused on European art, the museum was established in 1824 by George IV.
The Tate London
Known for its collections of late 19th and 20th century art, the Tate also houses the J.M.W. Turner collection and some earlier British art. Works from Gainsborough to Hockney and Pollock can be found here.
Victoria and Albert Museum London
A huge and unique museum, the V&A; has more than 7 miles of galleries covering decorative arts from furniture to clothing. Chinese art, Indian art, Medieval treasures a 20th Century gallery and much, much more can be seen in this very eclectic museum.
British Museum London
Established in 1753, the British Museum is the oldest public museum in the world. It contains artifacts covering thousands of years of world culture.
Ashmolean Museum of Art and Archaeology Oxford
Founded by Elias Ashmole 1683, this University of Oxford museum is one of the oldest public museums in the world.The museum building was designed by C.R.Cockrell and completed in 1845. It is one of the finest examples of neo-classical architecture in the country and provides a fitting display for the fine collection of art and antiquities. On permanent display are the University of Oxford’s collections of European and Near Eastern Antiquities, Western and Eastern paintings, sculpture, applied art, coins and medals. http://www.ashmol.ox.ac.uk
Jorvic Viking Museum York
This is a reconstructed Viking city based on recent archaeological findings in York. The museum reopened in April 2001 after extensive renovation. Visitors are sent back in time to the 10th century with displays of bedrooms, tools, weapons and more.
Mary Rose Portsmouth, Hampshire
Henry VIII’s flagship that sank nearly 500 years ago was dramatically recovered from the bottom of the sea in 1982 and is preserved in an enclosed museum. The only part still intact is the hull of the ship, but the story behind its fateful day and its recovery centuries later is an amazing feat. If you are a lover of naval history, the Portsmouth Docks also attract visitors with the HMS Victory (Flagship), the HMS Warrior (the first ironclad battleship), and many other spectacular ships and museums.
The National Maritime MuseumGreenwich, London
The largest maritime museum in the world, the National Maritime Museum features exhibits devoted to the Royal Navy and the history of naval warfare and exploration involving Great Britain. The museum also offers a planetarium, art exhibits, historical paintings and artifacts pertaining to the life at sea.
Royal Observatory Greenwich Greenwich
The site of the Royal Observatory is also the Prime Meridian of the World Longitude 0. Every place on Earth is measured by its distance east or west of this line. It is also the reference line for Greenwich Mean Time and is a reference line for astronomical observations.