What’s On At The Natural History Museum?

By Olivia Emily

6 months ago

From permanent displays to exciting exhibitions


Fancy uncovering the secrets of our planet? Or just (dare we say it) bored of art museums? Head to London‘s Natural History Museum for a vast array of incredible artefacts, all displayed in stunningly beautiful surroundings. Here’s our comprehensive guide to the NHM, plus what’s on in the coming months.

Natural History Museum

(c) Claudio Testa, Unsplash

What Is Displayed At The Natural History Museum?

The Natural History Museum is home to a huge collection of life and earth science specimens, with approximately 80 million items separated across five main collections:

  • Botany (plants)
  • Entomology (insects)
  • Mineralogy (crystals and minerals)
  • Palaeontology (fossils)
  • Zoology (animals)

Popular specimens include:

  • A piece of space rock, gifted to the UK by President Nixon and NASA
  • The animatronic T Rex in the dinosaurs gallery
  • Casts from Pompeii

How Long Should You Spend There?

The Natural History Museum is pretty expansive, so we recommend leaving at least four hours to explore all of the exhibits. That said, you could easily spend longer meandering through the different zones.

A dinosaur skeleton at the Natural History Museum

Adam Matieu, Unsplash

Where Is Dippy?

A large dinosaur skeleton cast named Dippy (after its genus, Diplodocus) used to occupy the cavernous, vaulted central hall at the Natural History Museum, gifted to the museum by Andrew Carnegie in 1905. But Dippy has since embarked on a national tour, and been replaced by the skeleton of a blue whale hanging from the ceiling. Dippy currently lives in Coventry’s Herbert Art Gallery & Museum, where he will remain until February 2026.

Is It Free?

Entry to the Natural History Museum is free of charge.

Do You Need To Book?

Though entry is free, the museum recommends visitors book in advance to ensure they will be able to enter. If the museum reaches capacity, walk-in visitors will not be permitted, or they will be told to come back later. If you’re looking to visit a specific exhibition, you will need to book in advance. Find out what’s on below…

What’s On At The Natural History Museum?

A woman visiting the Wildlife Photographer of the year exhibition

© The Trustees of the Natural History Museum, London

Wildlife Photographer of the Year Exhibition

The nation’s greatest natural photographers have explored the planet’s habitats, from sprawling urban metropolises to the deep polar seas, meeting the creatures that rely on these places. Their work is drawn together in the annual Wildlife Photographer of the Year Exhibition, which showcases the beauty and diversity of nature across the imagery plus soundscapes, videos and expert insight.

Details: 13 October 2023–30 June 2024 in the East Pavilion Gallery. Adult tickets from £17.50. Book at nhm.ac.uk

People sat at tables at a talk at the Natural History Museum

© The Trustees of the Natural History Museum, London

Generation Hope: Act for the Planet

The Natural History Museum’s acclaimed youth programme, Generation Hope: Act for the Planet, is returning this February, inviting young people to delve into the challenges and solutions for the planet across workshops, panels and talks. Highlights include: 350 world-leading scientists explaining what their research can tell us about both the planetary emergency and the history of climate change, and a session between scientists and young climate activists on how to become an advocate for the planet.

Details: 7–10 February 2024. Admission is free, but spaces must be reserved at nhm.ac.uk. For those who can’t make it to London, a selection of events and resources will also be available online.

Valentines At The Museum

Looking for Valentine’s Day plans? Nature lovers should err on the wild side and join in the fun at the Natural History Museum, where scientists will delve into love across the animal kingdom. From dance classes to science stations, guests can expect plenty of after-hours antics, plus a fully stocked bar and even a live harpist serenading you.

Details: 14 February 2024 from 18.45–22.30 pm. Adult tickets are £35, or £31.50 for members. Book at nhm.ac.uk

People partying beneath the whale skeleton with colourful lighting

© The Trustees of the Natural History Museum, London

Valentine’s Silent Disco

The famed NHM silent disco will have a love-filled slant in February, inviting visitors to fall in love with the natural world, soundtracked by great music, and dancing beneath the iconic blue whale.

Details: The Silent Disco and After Hours Viewing ticket is £45 (£40.50 for members) and includes earlier entry at 7.30pm with a free drink on arrival, plus admission to our Wildlife Photographer of the Year exhibition, followed by the silent disco from 9pm. Standard tickets are £35 (£27 for members) and allow entry after 9pm. Book at nhm.ac.uk

February Family Festival

February half term is coming fast, so it’s time to get planning. Luckily, the NHM has you covered with an array of talks, tours, events and workshops to feed curious young minds. There is plenty for dinosaur fans to enjoy, plus a special collaboration with LEGO® will see little ones build nature-friendly neighbourhoods.

Details: A selection of both free and paid activities will run from 10–18 February 2024 at the Natural History Museum South Kensington. See more details at nhm.ac.uk

Yoga in the museum under the whale skeleton

Yoga at The Natural History Museum. © The Trustees of the Natural History Museum, London

Yoga At The Natural History Museum

Get zen in new surroundings, moving your body through a series of ancient yogic sequences beneath Hintze Hall’s magnificent blue whale skeleton. Developed in collaboration with Walthamstow-based studio East of Eden, this is the perfect way to tune into yourself and embrace the natural world.

Details: Adult tickets are £35 (£31.50 for members) and include access to Wildlife Photographer of the Year after the class. Sessions take place on the last Sunday of the month from 8–9.15am. Bring your own mat. Book at nhm.ac.uk

Dino Snores For Kids

Kids aged seven to 11 can experience a magical night of exploration and adventure at the Natural History Museum’s famed Dino Snores. It’s all about fun, with a healthy dose of education for curious minds. After setting up camp in one of the amazing galleries, little ones will join in on an evening of awesome activities, from exploring the Museum by torchlight to designing a dinosaur t-shirt. All of this with the added naughtiness of a late bedtime (midnight) before breakfast is served bright and early with some extra facts about the natural world gathered in a trail through the museum.

Details: Tickets are £75 each (£67.50 for members) including breakfast. Upcoming dates include:

  • Saturday 3 February
  • Saturday 17 February
  • Friday 1 March
  • Friday 19 April

Find out more and book at nhm.ac.uk. If you missed out on tickets, click here to join the waitlist.

Kids in sleeping bags walking through the museum

© The Trustees of the Natural History Museum, London

Dino Snores For Grown-Ups

The NHM’s iconic sleepovers also have an adult twist, featuring fun, food, science, movies and music. Guests will tuck into a three course dinner, before exploring the museum after hours, with a pub quiz, science show, stand-up comedy and more, all before snuggling up to sleep beneath the beloved blue whale. In the morning, enjoy a cooked breakfast before blowing away the cobwebs with a yoga session. Fancy resting your head on a camp bed? Upgrade to a Camp Sequoia ticket.

Details: Tickets are £220 (£198 for members), including a drink on arrival, dinner and a hot breakfast. Camp Sequoia tickets are £280 (£252 for members) and include a camp bed in the upper balconies of Hintze Hall, a goodybag, fast track queue on arrival and Priority booking access for tours. Everyone should bring their own sleeping bag and pillow. Upcoming dates include:

  • Saturday 20 January
  • Saturday 16 March
  • Friday 5 April
  • Friday 19 July
  • Friday 23 August

Find out more and book at nhm.ac.uk. If you missed out on tickets, click here to join the waitlist.

Natural History Museum

Natural History Museum

Special Tours

Fancy getting more of an insight as you stroll around the Natural History Museum? An array of special tours are available on a rolling basis, including:

VISIT

The Natural History Museum is open every day from 10am–5.50pm. Find it at Cromwell Rd, South Kensington, London SW7 5BD.