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Mercedes Benz World, Weybridge, Surrey

Mercedes Benz World, Weybridge, Surrey

Museums

If you haven’t been to a museum in years for fear of drab venues and broken pots in glass cases, you may be interested to hear that museums in England have been transported into the 21st century. Prepare yourself for a surprise as the South East has some of the most dynamic museums in England, with more hundreds across the region.

In place of stuffy rooms and wardens shushing for quiet, you’ll find inspirational and interactive spaces with engaging and accessible exhibits from retro cars to animatronics. Whether you’re into heritage, maritime, wildlife, or sport, you’re bound to find a museum that’s right up your street.

The South East is home to two brilliant Dockyards: Portsmouth Historic Dockyard in Hampshire and The Historic Dockyard Chatham in Kent. Discover maritime history onboard some of the most famous war ships in British Naval history and find out what life was like for sailors in years gone by.

Car enthusiasts won’t want to miss the world-famous National Motor Museum at Beaulieu in Hampshire’s New Forest. See one of the largest car collections held by any of the museums in England, with 250 cars of every age including land speed record-breakers Golden Arrow and Bluebird.

Many of Britain’s best-loved authors lived in the South East and found the region inspirational for their work. Explore the Jane Austen House Museum in Hampshire, the  house where Jane Austen wrote some of her famous novels, and visit the many locations in Kent that tell of the life and works of Charles Dickens, such as the Guildhall Museum in Rochester and the Dickens House Museum.

Other museums in the South East that will help expand your curiosity include the Ashmolean Museum and the River & Rowing Museum, both in Oxfordshire; Mercedes-Benz World in Surrey; Dinosaur Isle on the Isle of Wight; The Roald Dahl Museum and Story Centre in Buckinghamshire; and The Look Out Discovery Centre in Berkshire.

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Attractions

Southampton City Art Gallery

Southampton City Art Gallery

Southampton Art Gallery has a permanent collection of over 3,800 works of art, which span six centuries. The main exhibition hall, with its lofty...

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  1. Add Southampton City Art Gallery to your Itinerary

    Southampton City Art Gallery

    Type

    Gallery

    Location

    Southampton

    Major collection of British and European paintings from the 14th to 20thC with emphasis on 20thC British art.

  2. Add Oxford Town Hall to your Itinerary

    Oxford Town Hall

    Type

    Heritage / Visitor Centre

    Location

    Oxford

    A victorian building opened in 1897 and still used for local government. Original rooms such as the Court Room and Council Chambers are available to view as is the City Plate Collection. Home to the Museum of Oxford from Spring 2012.

  3. Add The Hop Farm Family Park to your Itinerary

    The Hop Farm Family Park

    Type

    Museum

    Location

    Paddock Wood

    A collection of well-preserved Victorian oast houses, home to the Hop Story Museum and the famous grey and black shire horses. 'Decades experience,' Indoor adventure playground and nature trail.

  4. Add Museum of Farnham to your Itinerary

    Museum of Farnham

    Type

    Museum

    Location

    Farnham

    An award-winning museum with displays interpreting the history of the Farnham area. Willmer House is an C18th town house with a delightful walled garden.

  5. Add Old Town Hall Museum to your Itinerary

    Old Town Hall Museum

    Type

    Museum

    Location

    Hastings

    Housed in a Regency town hall, the displays include seaside holidays, wartime, fishing, Victorian life, smuggling, Titus Oates, the Cinque Ports and the Hastings mint.

  6. Add Roald Dahl Museum and Story Centre to your Itinerary

    Roald Dahl Museum and Story Centre

    Type

    Museum

    Location

    Great Missenden

    The Roald Dahl Museum and Story Centre, in Great Missenden is where Roald Dahl (1916-1990) lived and wrote many of his well-loved books. This great little award-winning Museum, aimed at 6 to 12 year olds and their families, has fun galleries.

  7. Add Mercedes-Benz World to your Itinerary

    Mercedes-Benz World

    Type

    Museum

    Location

    Weybridge

    A world that is all Mercedes-Benz. Thrilling driving experiences, fascinating attractions, fun for kids. Fine dining, exciting events and classic cars too.

  8. Add Sittingbourne's Steam Railway to your Itinerary

    Sittingbourne's Steam Railway

    Type

    Railway

    Location

    Sittingbourne

    South East England's only preserved narrow-gauge former industrial railway and features the longest narrow-gauge viaduct in the country, museum and other attractions.

  9. Add Worthing Museum and Art Gallery to your Itinerary

    Worthing Museum and Art Gallery

    Type

    Museum

    Location

    Worthing

    Varied collections including art, costume, toys, archaeology and local history. Exciting programme of temporary exhibitions throughout the year. Small garden hosts changing sculpture exhibitions.

  10. Add Museum of Army Flying to your Itinerary

    Museum of Army Flying

    Type

    Museum

    Location

    Stockbridge

    The Museum of Army Flying is an award-winning British military aviation museum about the history of flying in the British Army.