Depending on your interests, there may be nothing more fascinating than heading off to a museum for the day – especially in London, where the selection is vast and caters to plenty of different passions. However, the city doesn’t only offer the opportunity to visit these kingdoms of knowledge by day, when the world is awake and logic reigns supreme… No, London has something even more interesting on offer.

There’s a bit of magic in wandering around public spaces at night, a little childlike excitement that only comes  from roaming the halls of museums, theatres and grand old buildings when the sun has set. With the days drawing in and the twinkle of the city’s winter lights starting to shine, there’s no better way to indulge your inner child than by stepping into the fantasy world of London’s museums at night.

Museums at Night: October Festival

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This eclectic festival takes place twice a year, in October and May. Lucky for us, we have just caught the October installation of Museums at Night. There are 33 different events to choose from, including the “Marvellous Mysteries of the Hackney Museum and an exploration into “Molecules to nanoscale machines: Building the future”. This intriguing bunch of events could make a great alternative to more traditional Halloween celebrations.

Science Museum: Late Nights

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If you think that science and delicious beer make good bedfellows, then the Science Museum’s Lates are the events for you. A combination of guided talks, workshops and casual learning, complemented by bars, silent discos and comedy nights, this ever popular series of events is a must for the curious and fun-seeking traveller. There are events running throughout the winter season, and most of them (best of all) are free! They are also well attended, so you should arrive early to secure your place.

Natural History Museum: Late Nights

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When the sun sets and the stars come out head over to the Natural History Museum Lates’ and experience this grand old building like never before. Visit the Wildlife Photographer of the Year and take part in special events, such as edible insect tasting, a “creepy-crawly” torch lit tour and a screening of the classic horror film, “The Fly.” The event runs monthly, so check out their website for more info.

V&A Museum of Childhood: Haunted Nights

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Childhood fantasies come to life at the V&A Museum of Childhood. Don your jumpers and get ready to brave the museum by night. Not only are the toys and collections particularly creepy in the dim lantern light, but always remember… they come alive after dark! For a night to give you goosebumps join in the haunting adults only tour and eerie craft workshops that take place in November and December.

The Wellcome Collection

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Described as the “destination for the incurably curious” the Wellcome Collection hosts a number of late night and evening events in its halls. Offering everything from an audio tour of “Objects with Magical Properties”, through to lectures on “Human Emotions” and a discussion on the “Science and Politics of Laziness,” this establishment has something incredibly unique for all sensibilities to enjoy. Aside from the fascinating events, the Collection also has a cafe, restaurant, exhibitions and a renowned library. One of our London top picks, the Welcome Collection is not to be missed.

Remember, all is not what it seems… especially in the intriguing world of London’s Museums by night.


Written by Caitlin (A.K.A. The Indie Butterfly).

Caitlin is a writer, traveller and part-time superhero. Currently living in London, read more of her work on her blog, or stalk her on FacebookTwitter and Instagram.


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