The V&A is one of the world’s – let alone London’s – most magnificent museums, its foundation stone laid on this site by Queen Victoria in her last official public engagement in 1899. It is a superb showcase for applied arts from around the world, appreciably calmer than its tearaway cousins on the other side of Exhibition Road. Some 150 grand galleries on seven floors contain countless pieces of furniture, ceramics, sculpture, paintings, posters, jewellery, metalwork, glass, textiles and dress, spanning several centuries. Items are grouped by theme, origin or age: for advice, tap the patient staff, who field a formidable combination of leaflets, floor plans, general knowledge and polite concern.
Victoria & Albert Museum
Monday – Thursday: 10:00 – 17:45
Friday: 10:00 – 22:00
Saturday – Sunday: 10:00 – 17:45
Free (permanent collection); admission charge applies for some temporary exhibitions
Cromwell Rd London SW7 2RL
+44 (0)20 7942 2000