The best art galleries and museums in the UK
All around the world, the UK is famed for its breadth of historic and cultural attractions. In particular, the range of museums and galleries across the country attracts visitors from every corner of the globe.
The British Museum in London, for instance, saw 5.5 million people pass through its gates in 2012, with Tate Modern closely following with 5.3 million visitors. So if you’re planning a trip around the UK to visit vital national heritage, there’s plenty for you to see.
Galleries that you can’t miss
London is home to a number of the UK’s best galleries, though of course it’s not the only city to boast great artistic attractions. If you’ve never visited a London gallery before, start at Tate Modern. This stunning building on the South Bank is a renovated power station, and now contains several enticing floors of modern art. Its cavernous Turbine Hall frequently hosts installations too and entry is free, though special exhibitions require paid-for tickets.
For something a bit more traditional, head to the National Gallery at Trafalgar Square. Nearly 200 years old, this treasured institution is home to thousands of paintings dating from medieval times to 1900 so covers some of art’s most exciting periods in history. Its collection includes great works of art by Rubens, Titian, Da Vinci, Turner and Vincent van Gogh’s iconic painting of sunflowers.
Head further north to Liverpool to see the treasures of the Walker Art Gallery, one of the most celebrated attractions in this great artistic city. And on the opposite coast, the BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art in Gateshead is a fabulous multi-level space for modern art, situated in an old flour mill.
Museums for all the family
Like many of the country’s leading art galleries, stand-out museums – like The British Museum – offer free general entry. The British Museum is the perfect day-out for families in London, offering a range of exhibits that will fascinate everyone from young children to grandparents. Another great destination for cultural families in London is South Kensington, where you’ll find the stunning National History Museum, the exquisite Science Museum and the enchanting Victoria and Albert Museum, all within a few minutes’ walk of one another.
The historic university town of Oxford is just a short journey from London and its Ashmolean Museum, specialising in art and archaeology, is a must-see. The Pitt Rivers Museum is another archaeological highlight in Oxford. In fact, some people might say that Oxford itself is a living museum – make sure you take the time to walk around the city and marvel at its historic buildings and colleges.
Hop on a train from Oxford to Edinburgh and there’s more to see still. The National Museum of Scotland recently underwent a years-long refurbishment and re-opened to rave reviews. It also offers free entry, and visitors gather in its main hall every hour to watch the machinations of its famous Gothic-style clock, designed by sculptor Eduard Bersudsky. Take a short journey west and you’ll find yourself in Glasgow. Here, the beautiful Kelvingrove Art Gallery and Museum is a lovely place to explore with friends and family.
Latest posts by Silversurfers Editor (see all)
- Win 2 nights on board the Luxury Sunborn Superyacht in Gibraltar! - March 21, 2017
- Should MPs have more than one job? - March 20, 2017
- A simple way to maximise your ISA - March 17, 2017
- Blooming Lovely from Hotter! - March 17, 2017
- Claim a pair of cinema tickets to see Going in Style! - March 17, 2017
Leave a Comment!
Community Terms & Conditions
These content standards apply to any and all material which you contribute to our site (contributions), and to any interactive services associated with it.
You must comply with the spirit of the following standards as well as the letter. The standards apply to each part of any contribution as well as to its whole.
be accurate (where they state facts); be genuinely held (where they state opinions); and comply with applicable law in the UK and in any country from which they are posted.
Contributions must not:
contain any material which is defamatory of any person; or contain any material which is obscene, offensive, hateful or inflammatory; or promote sexually explicit material; or promote violence; promote discrimination based on race, sex, religion, nationality, disability, sexual orientation or age; or infringe any copyright, database right or trade mark of any other person; or be likely to deceive any person; or be made in breach of any legal duty owed to a third party, such as a contractual duty or a duty of confidence; or promote any illegal activity; or be threatening, abuse or invade another’s privacy, or cause annoyance, inconvenience or needless anxiety; or be likely to harass, upset, embarrass, alarm or annoy any other person; or be used to impersonate any person, or to misrepresent your identity or affiliation with any person; or give the impression that they emanate from us, if this is not the case; or advocate, promote or assist any unlawful act such as (by way of example only) copyright infringement or computer misuse.
Nurturing a safe environment
Our Silversurfers community is designed to foster friendships, based on trust, honesty, integrity and loyalty and is underpinned by these values.
We don't tolerate swearing, and reserve the right to remove any posts which we feel may offend others... let's keep it friendly!