A veritable cornucopia of things to educate, ponder, wonder, inspire and enjoy. This surprising, family-friendly, free museum and gardens is a quick hop from Kent to South London’s Forest Hill.
Set in 16 acres of landscaped gardens, the Horniman is an anthropological museum with a traditional natural history gallery – dominated by a bizarre, overstuffed walrus – where the exhibits are displayed in traditional cases with no computer touch-screens in sight. There's also an aquarium, a permanent gallery dedicated to African, Afro-Caribbean and Brazilian art, and a collection of around 1,600 musical instruments, with an area where people can play some of them and a display ('At Home with Music') where historical keyboards, dating all the way back to a virginals from 1555, are on show. The museum provides extensive facilities for families, including a nature trail, weekend workshops and a hands-on base where children can touch museum objects. Nature Base explores the natural world with exhibits including the Horniman beehive.
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