The world-class British Museum purports to tell nothing less than the total story of human culture. It was founded in 1753 from the collection of physician Sir Hans Sloane, and subsequent expansion (it now boasts seven million objects) kept pace with Britain’s colonial footprint – meaning continuing calls for repatriation of star exhibits like the Elgin Marbles. This temple to history has not been exempt from modernisation – notably Lord Foster’s Great Court built for the millennium. But the exhibits remain key: Parthenon treasures and fragments of the Seven Wonders of the World in Greek and Roman Antiquities, or mummies and the Rosetta Stone in the finest Egyptian collections outside Cairo.
Tel: 020 7323 8299
Entry Charges: Admission free; charge for exhibitions