Horniman Museum and Gardens

100 London Rd. (Open Map)


A little-known gem of a museum

Victorian tea trader Frederick John Horniman amassed a huge number of natural history specimens, cultural artefacts and curiosities on his travels around the world, which have been displayed in the purpose-built Horniman Museum since 1901. Today, the collection is 350,000-strong and still growing.

It includes 7,000 musical instruments from throughout the ages, many bizarre and rare, and one of London’s oldest surviving aquariums. Surrounding the museum is a 16-acre urban oasis to explore, with a stunning Grade II listed conservatory, a nature trail and a small animal enclosure. The Horniman Museum could be seen as South London’s quirky, eccentric and manageably-sized equivalent to the British Museum.