Science Museum, London

Science Museum, London (must see)

The Science Museum is a major London tourist attraction, drawing 2.7 million visitors annually. Like other publicly funded national museums in the United Kingdom, the Science Museum does not levy an admission charge. Temporary exhibitions, however, do usually incur an admission fee.

The museum was founded in 1857 under Bennet Woodcroft from the collection of the Royal Society of Arts and surplus items from the Great Exhibition as part of the South Kensington Museum, together with what is now the Victoria and Albert Museum. This collection contained many of the most famous exhibits of what is now the Science Museum. The Science Museum’s present quarters, designed by Sir Richard Allison, were opened to the public in stages over the period of 1919–28. This building was known as the East Block, construction of which began in 1913 and was temporarily halted by World War I. As the name suggests, it was intended to be the first building of a much larger project, which was never realised.

The Science Museum now holds a collection of over 300,000 items, including such famous items as Stephenson's Rocket, Puffing Billy (the oldest surviving steam locomotive), the first jet engine, a reconstruction of Francis Crick and James Watson's model of DNA, some of the earliest remaining steam engines, a working example of Charles Babbage's Difference engine (and the latter, preserved half brain), the first prototype of the 10,000-year Clock of the Long Now, and documentation of the first typewriter. It also contains hundreds of interactive exhibits. A recent addition is the IMAX 3D Cinema showing science and nature documentaries, most of them in 3-D, and the Wellcome Wing which focuses on digital technology. Entrance has been free since 1 December 2001. The museum houses some of the many objects collected by Henry Wellcome around a medical theme. The fourth-floor exhibit is called "Glimpses of Medical History", with reconstructions and dioramas of the history of practiced medicine. The fifth floor gallery is called "Science and the Art of Medicine", with exhibits of medical instruments and practices from ancient days and from many countries. The collection is strong in clinical medicine, biosciences and public health. The museum is a member of the London Museums of Health & Medicine and its medical collections have a global scope and coverage.

The new Wellcome Wing, with its focus on Bioscience, makes the Science Museum of London a leading world centre for the presentation of contemporary science to the public. Some 170,000 items which are not on current display are stored at Blythe House in West Kensington. Blythe House also houses facilities including a conservation laboratory, a photographic studio, and a quarantine area where newly arrived items are examined.

Why You Should Visit:
A fun place to broaden your horizons. Most exhibitions are free.

Tip:
The shop at the museum has some fine and unusual gifts that make learning fun.

Opening Hours:
Daily: 10am-6pm
Sight description based on wikipedia

This sight is featured in a self-guided walking tour of London, England within the mobile app "GPSmyCity: Walks in 1K+ Cities" which can be downloaded from iTunes App Store or Google Play. Please download the app to your mobile phone or tablet for travel directions for visiting this sight. The app turns your mobile device to a personal tour guide and it works offline, so no data plan is needed when traveling abroad.

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Science Museum on Map

Sight Name: Science Museum
Sight Location: London, England
Sight Type: Museum/Gallery
Guide(s) containing this sight: Kensington/Knightsbridge Walk  

Walking Tours in London, England

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Bridges of London

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City of London Walk

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Tour Duration: 3 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 5.1 Km or 3.2 Miles
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Tour Duration: 1 hour(s)
Travel Distance: 2.1 Km or 1.3 Miles

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