Old masters or modern art, London offers the art-loving culture-vulture every art form known to man. With more museums and art galleries than any other city in the world, the majority of them offer free entry for the permanent collections.
The National Gallery is home to some of the best art collections in the world, huge rooms of glorious gilt framed Ruben’s, Botticelli’s and Leonardo’s adorn its walls, before stumbling into a room of Impressionist and Post-Impressionist paintings that certainly make an impression. Its neighbour, The National Portrait Gallery starts chronologically on the top floor with Kings and Queens of England and ends with today’s rock n’ roll royalty. For those with a more contemporary taste Tate Modern, re-born from an industrial power station on the Southbank, offers exhibitions of more recent artists. Then take a trip across the Thames to the sister gallery, Tate Britain for a collection of Turners to delight any art enthusiast.
For the iconoclasts, look no further that the Saatchi Gallery in The Duke of York Headquarters, Chelsea, home to the Young British Artists, including Damian Hirst and Tracy Emin; or explore the White Cube galleries displaying the works of Gilbert & George, and the brothers Jake and Dinos Chapman. If that’s not to your taste, then explore the streets of Mayfair, where shop galleries exhibit and sell established artists.
Children are catered for with the Natural History Museum and the Science Museum, displaying life-sized dinosaurs, holding specially devised quizzes and clever exploration routes with loads of inter-active devices and exhibits; not to mention the London Dungeons and the Harry Potter experience.