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The best free museums in the UK

Here is GB Mag's list of some of the best free museums in the UK.

British Museum, London Britain’s largest museum which boasts a collection of around 8 million ancient artefacts.
Natural History Museum, London Seen as the 'cathedral of nature'. Photo by: Andrew Wales (Flickr).
Science Museum, London Jam packed with futuristic exhibits and educational displays for all. Photo by: Heather Cowper (Flickr).
Imperial War Museum The museum is dedicated to shedding light on the reality of war and conflicts involving Britain.
Photo by: Nathan Kowald (Flickr).
Leeds City Museum The museum has a varied spread of exhibits, with six galleries dedicated to different continents and time periods as well as own for Leeds’ own history. Photo by: Spixey (Flickr).
National Museum of Scotland, Edinburgh This museum contains everything from art and design to space and technology and offers a smorgasbord of exhibitions and artefacts to look at. Photo by: Marian Craig (Flickr).
National Museum Cardiff, Wales From Impressionist paintings and multimedia installations to a vast set of archeological and geological findings, visitors are sure to be enthralled by this museum. Photo by: juliagrossmann (Flickr).
Ulster Museum, Belfast, Northern Ireland Learn more about Irish art and history by paying a well-deserved visit to this museum.

IF you want a great day out, why not try a free museum? Here are GB Mag's pick of some of the best free museums in the UK:

British Museum, London

This is Britain’s largest museum which boasts a collection of around eight million ancient artefacts, works of art, as well as a range of spectacular exhibitions. Its many departments hold some of the most important pieces of human history, including the Rosetta Stone, found in 1799 it is the key to deciphering Egyptian hieroglyphics. The Lindow Man and the Sutton Hoo Ship-Burial are also highlights of the museum while various other Egyptian, Incan, Asian and Middle Eastern cultural treasures are a must-see for visitors.

Natural History Museum, London

It’s no surprise that this museum is often seen as a ‘cathedral of nature’. Its vast collection of plant and animal life is comprised of more than 60 million specimens and wows more and more visitors each year. Every colour-coded section is dedicated to covering one slice of the natural world in its many forms. Marvel at the life-size model of a blue whale hanging from the ceiling in the Blue Zone, or inspect the tiny fossilised creatures that once graced the Earth during prehistoric times in the Green Zone. And no matter what, you’ll be guaranteed to jump at the sight of a giant dinosaur skeleton looming over you at the entrance!

Science Museum, London

Think science is boring? Think again. Each floor of the museum is jam-packed with futuristic exhibits and interactive displays, which allow visitors to get stuck into real experiments. From the Industrial Revolution to the moon landing, the museum covers an ambitious timeline of scientific and technological achievement, seeking to challenge as well as inspire future generations. Perhaps one of the highlights is the Atmosphere gallery, which tackles climate change and helps guests to understand its problems as well as how it is currently being researched by scientists.

Imperial War Museum, London

The London branch is set to re-open on the 29th July so there is no better time to make a visit this summer. The museum is dedicated to shedding light on the reality of wars and conflicts involving Britain, and covers nearly everything from the First World War to modern battles. It is known for giving visitors an authentic sense of the ‘wartime experience’ with its impressive collection of military uniforms, weapons, artillery, armoury and other artefacts. If you’re a history fan, this is one not to be missed.

Leeds City Museum, Leeds

The museum has a varied spread of exhibits for visitors, with six galleries dedicated to different continents and time periods as well as one for Leeds’ own history. Whether you want to explore ancient civilisations or step into an interactive rainforest, the museum caters to everyone's interests. You may even come face to face with the infamous Leeds tiger, a lifelike stuffed tiger and prized Victorian artefact, or the Leeds mummy, a terrifying but captivating display of Egyptian history.

National Museum of Scotland, Edinburgh

If you’ve never seen a hippopotamus suspended from a ceiling or an exotic bird stuffed by Charles Darwin himself, then you need to visit this museum. It contains everything from art and design to space and technology and offers a smorgasbord of exhibitions and artefacts to look at. There is also a gallery committed to world cultures, so visitors are sure to be endlessly fascinated. Previously popular exhibitions include 'Vikings', which gave insight into what we really know about these legendary warriors. 

National Museum Cardiff, Wales

This is a truly unique museum which has plenty to offer. From Impressionist paintings and multimedia installations to a vast set of archeological and geological findings, visitors are sure to be enthralled. In fact, the new Marine gallery has recently opened in the Natural History section, where you can see an actual skeleton of a Humpback whale or find out more about the history of our own planet.

Ulster Museum, Belfast, Northern Ireland

Learn more about Irish art and history by paying a well-deserved visit to this museum. Whether you want to retrace the 'troubles', look at modern art or see Princess Takabuti, a 2500 year-old mummy dubbed ‘Belfast’s oldest bleached blonde'... the Ulster Museum does it all and has become one of Northern Ireland’s most famous attractions.

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