London, the capital of England, is simply beautiful. It is located in the south-east of Great Britain; it is the largest city in the United Kingdom.
One of the world’s most popular tourist spots, in 2011 the capital attracted a whopping 15.3 million international visitors. London is famous for its creativity, arts and culture so discover the many art objects and artifacts exhibited in the best museums of the capital.
The National Gallery
Located in Trafalgar Square, London, the National Gallery houses the national collection of Western European painting from the 1250s. It contains masterpieces by Reuben, Van Gogh, Turner, Leonardo Da Vinci, Monet, Rembrandt and many other well-known artists.
A portable audio guide is available in eight languages with comments on more than 1,000 paintings in one collection. In addition, there are trails specially designed for children – you can find out more about this at information desks. There is also a nice bar / cafe in the gallery.
The National Gallery is open every day from 10am to 6pm (or until 9pm on Wednesday) except January 1st and from December 24th to 26th when the museum is closed. Admission is free as the works belong to the public.
The National Portrait Gallery
The National Portrait Gallery at St Martin’s Place, London, was opened to the public in 1856 and houses portraits of famous and prominent British people, such as portraits of William Shakespeare (of Chandos) and Henry VIII (of Holbein). The collection includes photographers and caricatures as well as paintings, drawings and sculptures.
An audio guide is available and allows you to learn more about at least 170 included portraits. There is a nice cafe on the ground floor and a nice rooftop restaurant that offers stunning views of Westminster, Nelson Column and Big Ben.
Admission is free and the gallery is open every day from 10:00 to 18:00 (until 21:00 on Thursdays and Fridays) except between 24 and 26 December. Attention: fees are applicable for special exhibitions.
The Tate Britain
The Tate Britain, located in Milbank, includes a collection of British art from the 1500s to the present. The best known are a collection of more than 300 paintings by Turner and a considerable collection dedicated to two artists of the romantic age, Constable and William Blake.
An audio guide is available. If you plan to visit the two Tate Galleries in London, it is well worth taking advantage of the boat that travels between Tate Britain and Tate Modern every 40 minutes during business hours, offering panoramic views of the Thames who inspired so much British art.
The museum is open every day from 10:00 to 18:00 (last admission at 17:15) and is closed from 24 to 26 December. Admission is free.
The Tate Modern
The Tate Modern is a modern art museum located in Bankside, London. Created in 2000, it is the most visited art gallery in the world. The collection of modern and contemporary art includes important masterpieces by Picasso and Matisse, surrealist paintings by Dalí, Ernst and Magritte, murals by Rothko, abstract paintings by Pollock and, of course, Pop’s collections, art of Lichtenstein and Warhol.
Like other London museums and galleries, an audio guide is available in a variety of languages and the museum contains a café- restaurant and a shop. Like the other Tate, admission to the Tate Modern is free, except for special exhibitions. The museum is open from Sunday to Thursday, from 10:00 to 18:00 (last admission to special exhibitions at 17:15) and from Friday to Saturday, from 10:00 to 22:00 (last admission to special exhibitions at 21:15). It is open as usual on holidays except Christmas when it is closed from 24 to 26 December and 31 December when the museum closes at 18:00.
The Saatchi Gallery: the museum of contemporary art in London
The Saatchi Gallery is a London contemporary art gallery, opened by Charles Saatchi in 1985 to present his collection to the public. Now located in Chelsea, the collection provides an innovative forum for contemporary art, presenting the works of young and largely invisible artists or by international artists whose work has rarely or never been exhibited in the UK.
In 2010, it was announced that the gallery will become The Museum of Contemporary Art for London. This gallery, which is free to visitors, is open seven days a week from 10:00 to 18:00 (last entry 17:30), except July 31 when it closes at 15:00 and August 5 when it opens at 11:00. The gallery is closed from August 1st to 4th.