Cultural destinations in London

London is one the world’s top cultural destinations.

Its renowned museums and art galleries, many of which are free to enter, showcase a wealth of fantastic art and precious artefacts from all around the globe. London’s theatres feature record-breaking musicals and acclaimed opera performances, and the city itself, with its magnificent buildings and architecture, is like an open air museum for you to explore.

Whether you are looking for unusual London museums, or want to find a museum for the kids to enjoy, use our guide to pick the perfect option for your cultural day out in London.


Retrace the world’s heritage at the British Museum, or admire the collection of decorative art at the Victoria and Albert Museum. Meet a T.rex at the Natural History Museum or find out about the legendary red buses at the London Transport Museum. Head to the Science Museum, and experience 300 years of human advances through interactive displays.

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Art galleries

See masterpieces by da Vinci, Rembrandt and Van Gogh at the National Gallery, and visit the National Portrait Gallery to discover the stories behind their sitters. Walk into the grand courtyard of Somerset House, and go to the Royal Academy for record-breaking art shows. Get inspired at Tate Modern, one of the world’s top museums for contemporary art.

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See Mamma Mia!, The Lion King and other hit musicals at the Apollo Victoria Theatre, Novello Theatre and Lyceum Theatre. Alternatively, pay homage to Britain’s dramatic tradition at the Shakespeare’s Globe, The Old Vic or the National Theatre.

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Historic houses and palaces

London is full of beautiful historic houses and palaces such as Hampton Court, Henry VIII’s favourite residence, and the magnificent Kenwood House in Hampstead. Visit the Dr Johnson's House, and get lost in the exotic splendour of the Leighton House Museum.

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Royal London

Immerse yourself in London’s royal charm by visiting the sumptuous rooms of Buckingham Palace during the warmer months of the year. Also catch the Changing the Guard, then take a walk through Kensington Gardens, see the Diana, Princess of Wales Memorial Fountain, and crown your day with a visit to Kensington Palace.

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World Heritage sites

London has its own UNESCO’s World Heritage sites. Take a tour of the Tower of London and Westminster Abbey, and look up at the towering Big Ben and the Houses of Parliament. Admire the historic buildings of Maritime Greenwich, and explore the stunning Royal Botanic Gardens at Kew.

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Catch the movie stars as they walk the red carpet in Leicester Square, and enjoy blockbusters and cult films at the historic Prince Charles Cinema. Discover cult classics at the BFI Southbank, watch new releases from the comfort of large leather armchairs at Electric Cinema, or be amazed by the BFI London IMAX Cinema's giant screen.

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Live music

The O2 and Wembley Stadium showcase the most popular names in large-scale international rock and pop music. For a more intimate gig, check out the Roundhouse or Koko for live performances. If you are looking for a night of jazz in a romantic setting, go to the legendary Ronnie Scott’s Jazz Club or the alternative Café Oto.

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Classical music and opera

Listen to world-class music performances in the glorious settings of the Royal Albert Hall, see La Traviata at the Royal Opera House, or enjoy opera in the grandeur of the London Coliseum theatre. For major classical music performances, head to the Royal Festive Hall at the Southbank Centre.

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Go to the Royal Opera House or London Albert Hall for spectacular ballet productions, and enjoy electrifying contemporary dance shows at the Barbican Centre. If you are looking for something different, head to Sadler’s Wells and discover its incredible range of dance performances, from tap to tango.

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