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The Strangest Museums in London

With the Easter holiday coming up, everyone is looking for things to do in and around the capital for friends and families. If you’ve been unable to find anything a little more unusual than an egg hunt then this post of curiosities is definitely for you! We’ve picked the best museums in London for some unusual sights and a great day out!

 

Horniman Museum

Horniman Museum
Natural History Gallery. © Horniman Museum and Gardens. Photo: Michael Harding

The Horniman Museum in South East London is packed with a range of diverse collections that both educate and excite everyone of all ages! The famous walrus, which has been on display for over a century, is a definite highlight of the museum, bought from the Colonial and Indian Exhibition in South Kensington  by Frederick Horniman when the museum closed. The taxidermy item is actually overstuffed and not true to form as walrus’ are typically wrinkly with loose skin but since very few people had seen a walrus back then, it was fairly exciting anyway!

 

Horniman Museum japanese monkey fish
Japanese Monkey-Fish/ Merman. © Horniman Museum and Gardens. Photo: Dani Tagen

The merman specimen gets everyone who visits the Horniman museum buzzing! Featuring a small head with an unattractive face on a tail, the item is alarming and intriguing all at once. A common question arises in regards to its authenticity. The museum’s studies of the specimen in a lab confirm that it is mostly papier-mâché and parts of fish which definitely lessens the sense of alarm when you’re studying it! Among these unusual specimens are a range of cultural and historical pieces to learn about during a great day out. Their Alice in Wonderland themed Easter campaign is set to be especially great for families so see their website!

 

Ripley’s Museum

Ripley’s Museum
Phalinn Ooi, Flickr

Ripley’s ‘Believe it or Not’ museum is a definite attraction in London, packed to the brim with great things to see, often with their own myths and legends attached! You’ll be able to see art made from sweets, fertility totems, shrunken heads, archives of remarkable people, nature’s wonders such as a two-headed cow with two different personalities and get personal with history by seeing Henry VIII’s shoe and placing a hand into water the same temperature as the sea during the Titanic tragedy. A visit to Ripley’s is a great day out for all the family!

 

Viktor Wynd’s Museum of Curiosities

Viktor Wynd’s Museum of Curiosities
Tom, Flickr

Set below a cocktail bar in Hackney, Viktor Wynd has a basement of weird and wonderful items. Going against the grain, however, it makes no attempt to specify or categorise its findings. It’s philosophy against explaining the world means the museum is literally just a mess of random items to look at that have no context or ‘knowledge’ assigned to them. This ‘museum’ is less about learning and more about wonder – perfect for those who just fancy a gawk at some strange objects without the educational lectures.

 

If you know of any more weird and wonderful places our readers might like to visit then please do comment them below  as we’d love to hear about them!

Also, see our article on historical places in London to see over the bank holiday weekend!

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