Where else can you see the Rosetta Stone, ancient European artifacts, Meso-american antiquities, and amazing artwork from all over the world. I had a lovely time. The cafe is good and the English food is not as bad as everyone says it is. I have not seen all the museums in London, but I am sure this is one of the best.
You should go there.
An excellent museum The British Museum, it really is. AND ITS FREE, I mean who can complain about that? Of course donations are encouraged, welcomed and should be given.
The covered courtyard is impressive and really well done. The building in the centre blends in very well, I think anyway. I've no doubt when it was first mooted and completed it would have had a it's critics.
The catalogue of artefacts they have on display here is immense. The Egyptian section is excellent. The Greek section also amazing. Everything was excellent, there is no point in me reeling off all the parts we went to. My partner mentioned that the Egyptian section was better than the museum he was been to in Cairo.
The staff were also great too. I was here with a crutch and at times a staff member would see me and show me to the nearest lift for me to use instead of the stairs.
If you are in London and trying to decide which of the many attractions to go to, I recommend that The British Museum should be top of your list.
Wow, such a spectacular museum...focusing on human history and culture, this museum has a ton of items spanning the centuries and the continents. Due to time, I wasn't able to enjoy this museum as much as I would have liked (I was there for 2 1/2 hours and still needed much more time to see everything!).
The Rosetta Stone and Parthenon Marbles are some of the most controversial pieces in the museum and definitely worth seeing. Give yourself a lot of time to really enjoy everything since there is a lot to see and experience.
So I'm the 500th review for this place and I'm one of a very few that isn't going to give it 5 stars. That isn't because there aren't parts of this museum that are absolutely magnificent. As a lover of clocks and watches I particularly enjoyed that section, along with the gallery that traced the history of money.
What I had a hard time with, both as a lover of art and of ancient history, was seeing that most of the Parthenon's panels were here in an odd and disembodied form. Stolen from Athens ages ago, those of us who've been to the Parthenon have had to mentally imagine the panels that are here in London over there. These pieces, along with most of what was looted from Egypt, should be returned to their countries of origin, where they were taken from without lawful agreement.
It will be when such a consummation, devoutly to be wished, occurs that the British Museum will not only be a good museum, but a great one, that leads by principles, not sentiment.
Easily one of the simplest museums in the world to navigate, free, with a well lit centre court that brings order and balance to it all.
Based on the exhibits, the crowds, easiness of navigation, I would have given this place four stars. The reason I want to give the fifth one is because the British Museum offers access to nearly all of the exhibits free of charge. Yes, when you walk in they ask you to make a donation (most people drop a few bucks in when they leave), but they don't pressure you to do so.
The Rosetta Stone was a hugely popular exhibit. Although my favorite was definitely the Assyrian Exhibit - it's so well displayed that I could almost imagine myself in ancient Assyria.
They did sell maps at the door for £2, but you can get free ones for £1 a little ways in. A lot of people do return them so that they can be reused, so make sure to take good care of them. If there are a few key things you want to see here, than 1-2 hours is plenty of time. However, if you're as excited about everything as I was, you may need more than four hours easily. If you're debating between doing anything in London and a trip to this museum, make sure you choose this. Best part of my trip by far!
British Museum in London reminds me a lot of the Metropolitan Museum of Art in NY and of the Pushkin Museum in Moscow - unparalleled art collections spinning centuries of history and human development presented in a simple, yet labyrinth-like format helping the visitor to not just look at the historical objects but to experience time and space of long-long ago. If you have a spare day, I highly recommend getting lost amongst the exhibits in this absolutely fabulous museum.
I usually like browsing through the Greek collection, following spending time amongst the mummies and devoting a half-hour or so to partaking tea and finger sandwiches at a café upstairs. If you are not a tea person, the Museum Pub across the street has really good ale.
While I have been to the British Museum several times, I am yet to absorb their entire collection. Overall, a magnificent museum experience!
Disorganized with signs of directions everywhere.
The stairs and elevators were hard to find.
It's very hot indoors.
But the China gallery was very impressive.
Everyone was interested in the Japanese Sex Exhibit, but there was too many people on the queue that I ended up not going.
Obviously there are a lot of important pieces here. But this museum experience wasn't great.
1) inside of the museum, you can buy maps for 2£. Thirty steps further into the museum, you can get a free map, 1£ donation requested. And my 2£ map was horrible!!
2) I've been walking around London for three days. My feet hurt. There is a significant bench shortage here. When you can find one, it's packed. They have stools in one area, that you can unfold, and return...but what??
3) Restroom shortage. One was closed. The remaining isn't enough.
4) Rooms were clearly numbered by a crazy person. I'm not kidding: the ground floor consists of rooms 1-4, 6-24, 26-27, and so on. Someone had too much ale before numbering these rooms.
5) The lighting is so dark, you can barely see many of the artifacts. And I'm not talking about delicate, light-sensitive objects. I'm talking about stone, gold and other objects that would be lit up like a science experiment anywhere else.
I'm not saying to skip this museum, but I would go with un-tired feet and the energy to endure it.
I'm not really sure I can put into words just how much I love this place and why. I am constantly in awe every time I walk up the entrance steps and into the dream like great court.
I can remember back to before it was built, when it was just an overgrown garden courtyard. Now it is a marvellous space that has brought the museum and antiquities into the future.
The British Museum has the most fantastic galleries. Even if the exhibition doesn't appeal to you, there are literally THOUSANDS of objects to amaze you. Although the exhibitions are always good. From Pompeii to the Terracotta Army, this museum always secures the most exciting and goose bump inducing spectacles.
This just has to be hands down the best museum in the world. I urge you all to become members and support it to keep being wonderful. The members' only events are fabulous too! You get to come late, have a glass or three of wine and wander around without all of the hubbub and tourists.
They also put on lectures and performances for members throughout the year. Hearing a jazz band play in the Indo/China wing whilst having a glass of champagne can't help but make you feel like you're back in the 1920s or in an episode of Poirot or something!
If you're in London visiting, GO! If you're a Londoner, GO MORE!
This is by far the best thing that the city has to offer.
The British Museum - Culture and art at its finest!
I travel to London almost annually and find myself at the British Museum attending one of their exhibitions and strolling through the galleries. My favourite is the Chinese and Asian galleries. What an extensive and comprehensive collection from early China BC to more recently.
The Egyptian exhibit is phenomenal too.
The entrance fee is donation based, which is great, and I always donate!
This is a must visit, for local and tourists alike!
The first thing is that this place is free to enter, so there is absolutely no reason for you to not stop by this famous museum. We only came here for the first time with about 1 hour to spare. The guided map shows you the essentials that you have to see before you leave, which is completely doable within 1 hour. We saw amazing artifacts and arts from all over the world. The museum itself is divided based on region and continents in the world. If you have not been to any museum yet in London, I would recommend to start with this one as the overall museum is well-designed, even for those who are usually not fans of museum tours. I highly recommend this place to kick off anyone's visit to London!
Thanks to the complete debacle in getting to Greenwich, we ended up with only about 2 hours to explore this wonderful museum. But because entry is free, yes F-R-E-E, any amount of time is well-spent.
In our brief visit, we had a chance to see just portions of the Roman, Greek, and Egyptian collections. While my husband was enthralled with the Rosetta Stone, I particularly enjoyed the mummified kitties!
Allow at least a day to experience this museum, otherwise, grab a guidebook and choose only what's at the top of your list. It's easy to get side-tracked. Definitely a must see for any museum lover. I'm just a museum liker.
Just one artifact here would merit an entire exhibit in the States.
I love museums and make a point of visiting them frequently on vacation. But I've never seen anything that rivals the British Museum.
A million mummies!
Creepily preserved human bodies!
Massive Assyrian statues!
Priceless Greek statues!
Everywhere you turn, there's something amazing to see. It's as if most of the world's great civilizations got together and sent their treasures here. (Except that various explorers and conquerors stole them, so there's that.)
I spent close to five hours here and barely scratched the surface. Simply amazing.
AND IT'S FREE.
Protip: Check the stairwells to see if you can track down one of the free folding stools they provide. It makes it much easier to explore when you can sit down now and then.
This museum is pretty awesome, there's everything from art to mummies to random old artifacts. However, the only item I wanted to see in the entire museum (the Lycurgus Cup) wasn't on display. What a shame!
They have wheelchairs available for free, and while getting around is tricky in one, it's possible.
You say you love Antiquities??? Well Guvnah I have the place for you.
The British Museum has the most amazing collection of Egyptian, Assyrian, Babylonian, Levant, Roman, Greek....blah blah blah.....pieces.
Large pieces some that are humongous.
I really loved the Rosetta stone and all of the mummies and their sarcophaguss.
Prepare to spend at least 3-4 hours for a minimal experience.
Any single wing of the British Museum would suffice as a world-class treasury in its own right. To have it all in one place ... to stroll around the corner and see the freaking Rosetta Stone (not the language software package to help you impress foreign girls, the actual stone), pop down another hallway to find exceptionally preserved mummies, manuscripts and artifacts from all over the world and all over time ... It may well be the best of them all. You will need far more than a single day to appreciate the entire collection, so pick what you're most interested in and get started early.
Just to throw out a few highlights we enjoyed in particular:
1. They do have the vast majority of the surviving statues from the Parthenon. While it's simultaneously impressive (because of the number of statues) and depressing (because of the amount of damage), it's also hysterically funny to read the museum guide where the UK justifies why it is that they happen to possess so many priceless Greek treasures. The argument essentially boils down to "You know what, Greece? We bought these statues fair and square from the Turks when they'd conquered your butts, and we're keeping them. And besides, you'd have just screwed it up anyway." It's as if Italy was displaying artifacts from the White House, and since they'd gotten them from the UK when the British were busy burning down Washington DC in 1812, they considered it completely legitimate. I'm not taking sides on that debate, but it is definitely some amusing literature.
2. The Assyrian and other Mesopotamian collections are the best and most complete I've ever heard of, bar none. These civilizations get short shrift because they just don't have the religious fanbase they used to, but it's definitely worth a look at the era's cultural syncretism and dynamism (by syncretism and dynamism, I of course mean that cultures and religions steal from each other all the time and then insist they did nothing of the sort).
3. In honor of my wife's late grandmother, we had a very nice high tea in the museum's cafe. I'm no judge as to whether or not it was particularly good quality, but the tea tasted great and the food was exactly what one would expect to be served at said tea. A touristy but fun experience.
LOVE the British museum - it's a massive maze of wonderful historical artifacts, and I honestly can't believe that it's free. It's a must see if you're in London, and absolutely if you're a fan of museums. Definitely allocate a good chunk of the day to spend here, because you're not going to want to leave!
You can buy an audio tour or a special map/tour guide, but I would pass - the audio tour seemed to highlight random things on display, and the voice tended to drone on for a lot longer than it needed. Much better to just get lost in the museum and read the placards yourself. They have an awesome selection of Egyptian and Mesopotamian artifacts, as well as some great Greek and Roman displays.
The gift shop is really cool and has all the fun tourist miscellanea that you could want.
This is one of the top museums in the world. IN THE WORLD. All those stories I heard when I was a kid and what I learned in school about antiquities held at this museum were all true. What an amazing collection of Egyptian artifacts, Greek, and East Asian items! Seeing the Rosetta stone for the first time was absolutely cool. It was smaller than I anticipated, but amazing nonetheless. The Elgin Marbles were quite a sight, as I imagined them on the Parthenon. All of it entirely cool.
Unfortunately, I was only able to spend about 2.5 hours at this museum, which clearly requires at least a full day or more to appreciate its items and history! Hopefully the next time I'm in London, I can spend a bit longer at the Museum!
Don't do what my family did and only spend an hour and a half here, spend at least three hours! The artifacts here are amazing, and you can learn so much about the world.
We got an audio tour, but it really was useless, as there weren't many things that had an audio sign next to it. The Egyptian exhibit was my favorite- they have real life mummies and sarcophaguses! You also can't forget the Rosetta Stone- that's something that I will never forget, ever.
It really was amazing, even coming from a teenagers point of view. Sometimes, though, it was a little boring when you were reading about things you've spent the last five years studying about. But seriously, ah-may-zing.
When we got our audio tour, the man who rang us up was very kind and polite, but the man who gave us our audio tour was very sarcastic, edgy, an disrespectful. That was the only thing that was pretty bad, but service is always one of my stars.
The gift shop was probably one of my favorite parts of the museum. They have everything there, from computer cases to Chapstick to books to calendars- you get the point. My sister and I both got something- her a Rosetta Stone stress reliever and me some cute cartoon chap sticks! In the end, we walked out really happy.
A very fun museum! i would recommend starting at the top and working your way down. As the cool Mummy's and things are up the top, and i was too tired after spending 3hours there to actually venture up that far.
I will definitely be going back to see the mummy's at a later stage.
Also another quick tip, the grounds surrounding the Museum are beautiful and there are quite a few places to sit and eat, so i would recommend bringing a packed lunch and sitting in the grounds to eat it before venturing in.
The Met's (slightly evil, but equally very grand) twin across the pond. I came in here expecting to find it deeply problematic, what with the whole colonial "we stole everything you see here" thing. But instead I got an audio tour and proceeded to get verklempt at the beauty and grandeur of it all. NAY, at the beauty and grandeur of HUMAN CULTURE ITSELF. Because it really is phenomenal; the British Museum really captures something amazing. It's more than the sum of its (stolen, ahem) goods.
I did the Ancient Egypt and Korea tours (paid for by Korean Air? honestly, that Korean section was a bit strange - though I did betroth myself to a moon jar, oh, how I love that moon jar) and I honestly felt tears springing in my eyes. The tours are so well done: they give you tiny maps and little accompanying music to guide you to your next stop on the tour, it all feels very Star Trek. They invite you to examine the item, and they teach you about it (without overwhelming you).
I ditched the audio tour and then wandered through the Africa section - another area I thought would be problematic. Instead, I was pleasantly surprised at their presentation of contemporary African art; emphasizing the innovative and new, rather than the whole "this is Anansi the trickster god, and this is a clay pot, THE END" narrative, which I usually find in Western museums.
My only two, relatively small critiques:
- I went on a Monday, 2pm, in the dead of summer and it was PACKED. It was almost unvisitable, it was so incredibly, densely packed with touristy humanity. I don't know if this ever lets up (I expect not), but imagining this place with some breathing room - aaah. *That* would be heaven.
- There was almost NUFFIN' on the Pacific. And I KNOW the British colonized those islands as well. So why nothing on Polynesian/Micronesian/Melanesian cultures? So sad.
Oh yes, and it's free. Which is interesting, from a meta perspective.
Im still amazed at how amazing and wonderful the museum was. The Egyptian artifacts mummies, and other figures and statues are the best part in my mind...and best of all its all free (of course you should always make a donation of course).
If you are in London it is worth checking out without a doubt, there are audio guides that are very handy and in many different languages to choose from as well. As always get there early to avoid crowds it does get Very busy.
First of all, admission is FREE, so there is no excuse not to go. The British Museum is absolutely the best museum in London. There is so much to see (it's nearly impossible to see everything in a day), but some of the most famous items are the Rosetta Stone, Portland Vase, and Elgin Marbles.
Okay, yes. Five Stars, Three Hundred Sixteen Reviews. We get it, the British Museum is the bomb diggity. It's been drawing locals and tourists alike for centuries, is filled with anything you can imagine, YES, the Rosetta Stone, and is beautifully designed. Let me give you the run down on the things to consider in your visit, even though it's going to be as much five-stars for you as it was for me.
1. Temperature outside. The building is old, poorly heated and insulated. Prepare with layers!
2. Lines! I'm not sure if it would be better to turn up early in the morning, but the crowds are crazy. Wear comfy shoes, and be prepared to stand around waiting for the "money shot," especially of things like the Stone.
3. Organization. So many galleries, so many things to see. Pick a route, or figure out where you want to go, because wandering means getting stuck among the tourists (or, for you tourists, among yourselves!)
Other than that, enjoy, soak it in. The British Museum is the best history in the world, all set up and ready for you to enjoy.
Free! Huge and amazing. Filled with wonders. You may become hypnotized by the amazing items in the Egyptian room and collide with a woman who is QUITE upset by being accidentally jostled. (Maybe that only happens to me?) You can see the Rosetta Stone, sketches by Leonardo DaVinci, mummies, sphinxes, Easter Island statues, and LOTS more. I barely scratched the surface here by spending about half a day. I'd definitely come back to explore it more!
I love that this place is free. I'm not a huge museum person, but I spent several hours wandering the halls of the impressive building. There were staff members wandering around answering questions as well.
If you're in London for a while, stop in, even for an hour if you can. It's well worth it.
One of my top five museums in the world, no visit to London is complete without getting your culture on at the British Museum. Three times to London, three visits to the BM, I can't get enough (and some peeps have the nerve to call me "uncultured"! What the fuck do they mean? (jk))
Home of the Portland Vase, the Rosetta Stone and Elgin Marbles (en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fi…) (for the time-being as Greece has long claimed the marbles were stolen). Not that the English would take anything that didn't belong to them but there are more mummies here than anywhere in Egypt. And then without Napoleon's troops playing with a cannon, we wouldn't have "discovered" the link to deciphering hieroglyphics without the Rosetta Stone prominently displayed here.
From primitive times (even prior to the Sutton Hoo ship burial) the museum's collection spans all cultures and all ages to the present day. Greek and Roman art, Celtic gold, Japanese paintings and swords, African textiles...plan to spend at least a full day here, maybe more. We can all use as much culture as we can ingest. And don't concern yourself over the price cuz its free! Truly a museum for the world, it is the "most famous museum in the world." It opened to the public in 1759.
And then there is the "Museum Pub" just across the street for a different type of culture, a culture of pub fare and a cool Newcastle.
(try to see it before Athens get their marbles back, or England loses it's marbles, however you want to look at it)
This is quite a museum. And it's F-R-E-E!
The collections here are extensive, and are very often presented beautifully, such as the Egyptian collection. They also have a clock room that's unlike anything I've ever seen--just cool clock after cool clock after cool clock. That room both looks and sounds amazing.
You could easily spend hours here, so it's a good thing they have a cafe here with tempting baked goods. There are also multiple gift shops that serve as their own form of entertainment.
There are free tours available, as well, but the timing and topics are very specific. So you might target a specific tour, or just see what's on when you show up.
Be sure to say hi to Cleopatra!
First time here. Seems like a great museum and the majority of the exhibits are free. Way too extensive to do in one day. I saw the Japanese sex in art exhibit (7£) which was very well done. That alone took about two hours. My energy was weaning at that point due to jet lag and hunger so I decided to leave after that. I'll be back again for sure though. Definately a must do attraction.
I could spend a life time here. I spend two days here and couldn't see it all. Soaking up all the history and learning. Explore and discover.
Ancient Greece exhibit. and my Favorite Egyptian Exhibit. see and get close to real mummies.
Don't forget to take a moment to eat at the restaurant up stairs. Good food and great area to sit and relax.
I absolutely love, love this museum. I can't decide whether I like the British Museum or the National Gallery more. It's a toss up. This museum houses the Rosetta Stone, which I wasn't able to see due to the number of people crowding around it. But that's ok, because there were tons of other statues to occupy my time. I spent a day there, and that was barely enough to see everything.
They have an impressive Egyptian collection. There are sculptures and busts of famous pharaohs. They have a lot of Greek statues as well. There were different reliefs and one particular piece that really stuck with me were three statues of Greek goddesses standing on what reminds me of the Parthenon. You'll also find examples of Doric, Ionic, and Corinthian columns.
I also like the architecture of the building. I love the bright natural light coming from the skylight in the main building. The main building is circular with a wide stairway that leads up to the second story. I don't know about everyone else, but I feel happy when I'm there because the room is bright and big.
This is a must visit place while visiting London. It's full of culture and history, beautiful sculptures and architecture. And a huge bonus that it's free. I highly, highly recommend spending a day here.
Free. Full of history. I'm in.
Housed in a massive building, the British Museum was a must-see even on my short visit to London. Made a quick trip through the galleries; spent an hour but you could surely spend a day. The Rosetta Stone, the Elgin Marbles, assorted statues and artifacts from around the world... I was in awe the whole time I was there. Hopefully I'll get back and spend more time.
Soooooooooooo... IT"S MANDATORY!
How can I make people visit the Museum.. It's FREE, guys, okay :)
At least, you got interested :) No lines, no rush, no crazy people around..
You'll get a map where all important and must-visit places are listed for you not to miss smth, especially if you are short on time :) But normally, to enjoy and get the idea of all the collections will take approximately a couple of hours, so it's your choice :)
FREE MUSEUM! hands down my favorite. i went here twice while i was in london. incredibly inspiring.
my other favorite was definitely the wallace collection!
I was in London for 1 week and it wasn't nearly enough time to check out the city. We decided to stop into The British Museum one afternoon, after we got lost on foot for nearly an hour trying to find it, so unfortunately, when we actually did arrive... we only had but a couple of hours to tool around this magnificent palace of wonder. I could've easily spent a full day here and not been bored for a nanosecond.
I love that most, if not all, of the museums in England are FREE. Yup.. F-R-E-E. Especially in London, one of the most expensive cities in the world, travelers can certainly appreciate not having to spend money to enjoy themselves for hours on end. Walking into the B.M. was probably one of the best free things I've ever done.
You can snap pictures, no problem. There are hardly any chains or ropes confining you to only certain areas of the museum. I mean, you could literally walk up and touch a Greek statue if you wanted to; not that I'd recommend it and not that i did it, but you could... that's all I'm sayin'.
The British Museum offers up an extensive and somewhat overwhelming amount of amazing ancient artifacts from all over the world. By far the most memorable pieces I saw were the Greek and Roman sculptures and the Rosetta Stone; I mean, you see pictures of these things but then to actually see them in real life, the sheer capacity of them is mind blowing and the fact that they're thousands of years old gives me chills.
Even the ceiling in the Great Court is a work of art in itself. It is the largest covered public square in Europe; the steel and glass framing makes for some great photographs.
The best free museum in the world! You can easily spend over a day here.
The British Museum truly has an amazing collection that words cannot describe.
Specifically looking at their Chinese collection, they have fine artifacts that when I was at the Shanghai Museum they did not even have.
Even comparing their Egyptian mummy collection to the Lourve, the Bristish Museum has many more impressive pieces on display.
I only wish I had more time to fully explore every single exhibit.
One of the best historical collections in the world and admission is free! Unbelievable.
We only had time to walk through the Egyptian collection on the ground floor and on the third floor but we enjoyed it thoroughly.
Excellent museum shop with a variety of price points and items, for every taste. Particularly good selection of jewelry and apparel (such as scarves and ties).
The main entrance/courtyard is extremely modern, with a very minimalist but well catered cafeteria on the far corner.
My first time visiting was great. Had lot of fun and my experience here was something I could never forget. Lots of things to and most of all lots of things to learn. Would definitely recommend this place for anyone who are in this place for the first time.
Fascinating! There is something for everyone here. The wife and I visited on a busy day, but there were so many fascinating things (like the Rosetta stone, the Egyptian mummies, and the nice display of George III's library) that no one exhibit seemed overcrowded. The entire collection was well curated and explained. Best of all, we managed to see everything in a few hours. What a great way to spend a morning!
Ok, so I love this place. I always make it a point to hang out when I am in London, even if only for a brief visit to the Sutton Hoo find.
It really honestly has something for everyone. If you are into sculpture, then go hang out with the Greek stuff. If Indiana Jones was your hero growing up, take your little self to the Egyptology, Middle Eastern, Ancient China..... well any of the ancient civilizations really. If you have dreams of the great Irish storytellers of yore, haul booty to Celtic section. There are even enough nicknacks to please any potential hoarders.
The special exhibits can be amazingly neat. The last time I was there is it was Spanish paintings from the Renaissance to Goya. AWESOME!!!!
GO, I tell you. GO!!!!!!