A Guide to Must-See Exhibits and Activities
The British Museum in London is not only one of the oldest museums in the world but also one of the most visited. With a collection spanning over two million years of human history, it offers a wealth of experiences for all ages and interests. From ancient Egyptian mummies to the Rosetta Stone, the museum is a treasure trove of artefacts. Here are some of the top things to do and see at the British Museum.
1. Marvel at the Rosetta Stone
The Rosetta Stone, dating back to 196 BC, is arguably the most famous exhibit in the British Museum. This ancient Egyptian artefact was key in deciphering Egyptian hieroglyphs and is a must-see for history buffs.
2. Explore the Egyptian Mummies
The museum houses one of the world’s largest collections of Egyptian artefacts outside Egypt. The Egyptian galleries, particularly the mummies and the Book of the Dead, are perennial favorites. These exhibits provide a fascinating insight into ancient Egyptian burial practices and beliefs about the afterlife.
3. Discover the Elgin Marbles
The Elgin Marbles, a collection of classical Greek marble sculptures, are a highlight of the museum. They were originally part of the Parthenon and other buildings on the Acropolis of Athens. Their historical significance and artistic beauty make them an essential stop.
4. Admire the Assyrian Lion Hunt Reliefs
The Assyrian galleries showcase magnificent reliefs from the royal palaces of Assyria, dating back to the 9th century BC. The Lion Hunt reliefs, in particular, are renowned for their detailed depiction of the royal hunting parties.
5. Take a Guided Tour
For those interested in gaining deeper insights, the museum offers guided tours. These tours cover various themes and exhibits, providing a more in-depth understanding of the collections.
6. Participate in Workshops and Lectures
The British Museum also hosts a variety of workshops, lectures, and events throughout the year. These educational programs are perfect for those looking to expand their knowledge on specific historical periods or cultures.
7. Visit the Reading Room
The Reading Room, with its iconic domed roof, is a haven for book lovers. It has been used by famous figures like Karl Marx and Mahatma Gandhi. Although it requires a pass, it’s worth a visit for those interested in history and research.
8. Enjoy the Special Exhibitions
The museum regularly hosts special exhibitions that focus on specific themes, cultures, or periods. These exhibitions are a great way to see unique artefacts and learn about different aspects of human history.
9. Browse the Museum Shop
End your visit by browsing the museum shop. It offers a wide range of books, replicas of artefacts, and unique gifts, allowing you to take a piece of history home with you.
10. Relax in the Museum’s Cafes
The museum’s cafes are perfect spots to relax and reflect on your visit. They offer a variety of food and drink options, making them ideal for a quick break.
The British Museum is a world-class institution that offers something for everyone. Whether you’re a history enthusiast, an art lover, or just curious about the past, the museum’s vast and varied collection promises an enriching and enjoyable experience. With free entry, it remains an accessible and invaluable resource for exploring the rich tapestry of human history and culture.
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