Top 10 Museums in England


English museums are true guardians of national conservative traditions, vivid historical events and artistic achievements, known all over the world. It is impossible to spend some time in England without paying a visit at least to the most prominent museums, which pull in a big number of tourists every year.

British Museum

British Museum is, probably, one of the oldest and the biggest not only in England, but in the United Kingdom as well. It was created on the basis of three collections (paintings, manuscripts, ancient books, historical relics, scientific, ethnographic and archaeological artifacts), which belonged to Sir Hans Sloane, British doctor and naturalist. After his death the country inherited the entire range of his possessions and British Museum was established under the specific act of British Parliament. In 1759 it was supplemented with royal library. Among the most famous exhibits are the marbles of Parthenon, the central temple of the Athenian Acropolis.

London National Gallery

London National Gallery appears to be an art museum, the heritage of which counts nearly 2000 exhibits, dating back to the period of the 13th – 20th centuries. Every painting preserved is a real masterpiece. Despite the fact that London Gallery cannot outrage Louvre or Hermitage Museum, it still can boast of such unique and big-name canvases as Arnolfini Portrait by Jan van Eyck, Venus and Mars by Sandro Botticelli, Rokeby Venus (Venus at her Mirror) by Diego Velázquez, etc. The excursion to London Gallery might become the full course of fine arts history.

Wallace Collection

Wallace Collection is a sort of private museum, which demonstrates one of the best gatherings of French art items of the 18th century. It was collected by four generations of Seymour-Conway family (Marquises of Hertford). They gathered samples of the magnificent paintings and sculptures of different eras to decorate their ancestral mansion in Manchester Square in London for nearly 100 years. In 1900, Wallace Collection was opened for public and entrance to the museum is free to date.

National Maritime Museum

The history of British fleet is shown in National Maritime Museum, established in 1937 in Greenwich. It is a huge set of buildings, which comprise the object of UNESCO World Heritage, including Royal Observatory and The Quinn’s House, built in the 17th century.

Dover Castle

Within a variety of castles in England Dover Castle is the oldest one, and could not but attract travelers with numerous legends related to its vivid history, because for a long time it was the residence of the royal family. It is also called “The Key to England” due to its strategic location, which has been already observed before the beginning of our era.

Leeds City Gallery

Having the lifetime of only 120 years, Leeds City Gallery managed to collect masterpieces not only of English artists, but sculptors as well. In particular, the life of Henry Moore, famous contemporary sculptor, is associated with Leeds, and, therefore, his works are the very part of art gallery heritage.

National Portrait Gallery

One can look at the portraits of English outstanding people in National Portrait Gallery in London, which was founded in 1856. In particular, it was the first gallery in the world, focusing on such kind of painting. Here one might see portraits made by Rubens, Van Dyck and Holbein, who represented British monarchs or persons close to them in their time.

Gunnersbury Museum

Gunnersbury Museum was established in 1835 in the beautiful building of Regency epoch, which initially was the first suburban residence of the well-known banker Rothschild. This museum demonstrates the expositions of life of its initial owners and history of London Borough of Ealing and Hounslow.

Tea and Coffee Museum

Tea and Coffee Museum is situated on the bank of Thames River, established by one of the heirs of tea kings in England Edward Bramah in 1992. The location was not accidental, as far as it is the place, where this valuable product was unloaded massively (nearly 6000 boxes per day). Visitors are offered to look through exhibiting halls, to listen to the lecture about tea-making history in England and, of course, to attend a tea ceremony.

The Ashmolean Museum of Art & Archaeology

The Ashmolean Museum of Art & Archaeology is one of the oldest in the United Kingdom, being located in the heart of national education – Oxford. It has four consistent parts: Department of antiques, Department of numismatics, Department of Oriental Art and Department of Western European paintings. The leading place in museum’s heritage is taken by masterpieces of Raphael, Rembrandt, Leonardo da Vinci, Michelangelo and other artists of international glory.