If you’re planning a trip to London in the near future, then a visit to one of the capital’s many fascinating museums is no doubt high on your agenda of things to do.
There is something to suit all ages in this city and you’re sure to finish the day having learnt something fascinating to take home with you.
One of the best museums London has to offer is definitely the Victoria & Albert Museum, also commonly referred to as the V&A.
What does the V&A have to offer?
The V&A houses an astonishing collection of more than 2.3 million objects from the fields of art and design, spanning some 5,000 years of creativity. It is among the best places in the world for anyone with an interest in architecture, fashion, photography, jewellery, books, art and much more, whether they are students, hobbyists or just people with a thirst for knowledge.
Originally established in 1852 following the Great Exhibition and with direct input from Prince Albert, its ambition was to make art available to all and to provide educational resources for people from all backgrounds.
What’s more, the V&A is housed in one of the most architecturally stunning Victorian buildings in the UK, so it is worth a trip for this alone.
As well as the permanent displays, there are also events, activities and workshops for youngsters and adults, a list of which is worth checking out before your visit. However, what keeps many people coming back for more are the ever-changing exhibitions.
Exhibitions – what’s coming up soon and on now?
There are plenty of new exhibitions on at the V&A, no matter what your interests and passions. Here are a few highlights that you can see now and in the near future.
1. Undressed: A Brief History of Underwear
We might take it for granted, but the V&A definitely isn’t overlooking underwear with this fascinating display. Take a peek into the design of these essential garments from the 18th century onwards and see how they have impacted sexuality, practicality and morality down the ages.
This exhibition is on until March 12th 2017.
2. You Say You Want a Revolution? Records and Rebels 1966-1970
The Swinging Sixties were a time of great social upheaval and that’s what this exhibition focuses on. It asks whether the great revolutions of the era have had an impact on the way we live today and the way we see the future.
You can see this display until February 26th 2017.
3. Opus Anglicanum: Masterpieces of English Medieval Embroidery
Perfect for anyone with a love of all things crafty as well as history buffs, this exhibition showcases some of the most outstanding examples of medieval embroidery that still survive today. As you look round, you’re sure to be wowed by the skills of their creators, particularly given the lack of technological innovations we enjoy today. Among the highlights is an embroidered surcoat belonging to Edward the Black Prince, which dates back to 1376.
This display is on until February 5th 2017.
The museum is open daily from 10:00 am until 17:45 pm, although visitors on Fridays can enjoy late-night opening until 22:00 pm.
Admission to the museum as a whole is free, but some exhibitions and events carry a separate charge, as detailed above.
The V&A Museum is situated on Cromwell Road in Knightsbridge, which makes it ideally located for anyone enjoying a sightseeing trip to London since it is close to a variety of other attractions (the Museum of Natural History and Harrods spring to mind).
You’ll find the South Kensington tube station just a four-minute walk away, while several buses stop just a few minutes’ walk from the building.
If you’re coming in straight from the overground train, the nearest stop is Victoria at 24 minutes away.
Anyone on the lookout for a stylish and comfortable place to stay that’s close to the V&A Museum might want to consider Park Grand Kensington. Situated in west London, this boutique hotel has been elegantly designed and features all of the most desirable amenities you’d expect from a high-end hotel in London.
It is just a five-minute taxi ride away from the V&A, or 20 minutes on foot if you want to enjoy looking at this beautiful and exclusive neighbourhood as you stroll back to your accommodation after enjoying an exhibition.
Other local attractions
If you want to jam-pack your days with things to do in London, there are plenty of other things to do close by the V&A Museum that you can get to really quickly and easily.
Why not consider:
• The London Oratory
• The Albert Memorial
• Hype Park
• Kensington Gardens
This is just an overview of what’s on offer, so do take the time to do a little research and plan your days out around what perfectly suits your needs.