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National Maritime Museum

National Maritime Museum

London

Museums

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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 fun museums in England, with 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, art, science, maritime, or wildlife, you're bound to find something right up your street.

Types of museum

The featured museums in the counties of South East England demonstrate the sheer variety of interest on offer and a more detailed list of museums in South East England can be located through the map at the bottom of this page.

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's House 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.

Museums in London

Museums in Hampshire and the Isle of Wight

Museums in Buckinghamshire

Museums in Oxfordshire

Museums in Surrey

Museums in Kent

Museums in Berkshire

Museums in Sussex

Museums Near Me

Use the 'Map View' button below to find museums near you in South East England including dozens of local museums showcasing their town's proud history. Check individual listings to see which museums are open today.

Number of results:

Number of results: 121

, currently showing 1 to 20.

  1. Explosion! Museum of Naval Firepower

    Type

    Type:

    Museum

    Gosport

    The amazing story of naval firepower, from gunpowder to the Exocet, in an exciting visitor experience for all the family on the Gosport side of Portsmouth Harbour.

  2. Margate Museum

    Type

    Type:

    Museum

    Margate

    Margate Museum is opened by a group of volunteers called the Friends of Margate Museum who work with Thanet District Council to open Margate Museum on a regular basis.

  3. Rural Life Centre

    Type

    Type:

    Museum

    Farnham

    The Rural Life Centre is a museum of past village life covering the years from 1750 to 1960. It is set in over ten acres of garden and woodland and housed in purpose-built and reconstructed buildings including a chapel, village hall, cricket...

  4. Tudor House and Garden

    Type

    Type:

    Historic House / Palace

    Southampton

    Uncover over 800 years of history in the heart of Southampton’s Old Town. Tudor House and Garden gives visitors an insight in to the lives and times of its residents with informative displays and hands on interactive experiences.

  5. Claydon House

    Type

    Type:

    Historic House / Palace

    Buckingham

    There is plenty to do for all the family; see the beautiful interiors of the 400 year old house, roam the restored estate gardens, picnic, or simply eat, drink and shop in the 18th century courtyard.

  6. Winchester's Military Museums

    Type

    Type:

    Museum

    Winchester

    Five splendid military museums on an historic site with Visitor Centre, café displays and activities to interest all the family.

  7. City Space at Winchester Discovery Centre

    Type

    Type:

    Arts Centre

    Winchester

    A vibrant and versatile gallery space hosting a changing programme of exhibits to celebrate the best of Winchester's thriving arts and heritage scene.

  8. The Royal Hampshire Regiment Museum

    Type

    Type:

    Museum

    Winchester

    The story of the County Regiment of Hampshire, its Regular, Militia and Volunteers from 1702.

  9. Windsor & Royal Borough Museum

    Type

    Type:

    Museum

    Windsor

    The Windsor & Royal Borough Museum is a registered/accredited, family-friendly and accessible small local history museum in a Grade 1 listed building completed in 1689.

  10. Guildford Museum

    Type

    Type:

    Museum

    Guildford

    Guildford Museum is a beautiful 17C building, adjacent to the castle grounds, housing archaeology, local history and needlework displays.

  11. The Gurkha Museum

    Type

    Type:

    Museum

    Winchester

    The Gurkha Museum takes you on a journey of discovery through the history of Gurkhas in British service.

  12. Sittingbourne's Steam Railway

    Type

    Type:

    Railway

    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.

  13. Pendon Museum

    Type

    Type:

    Museum

    Long Wittenham

    Pendon aims to recapture, in detailed and colourful miniature, scenes showing the beauty of the English countryside as it used to be in the years around 1930.

  14. HMS M.33 at Portsmouth Historic Dockyard

    Type

    Type:

    Historic Ship

    HM Naval Base, Portsmouth

    HMS M.33 is not only the sole remaining British veteran of the bloody Dardanelles Campaign of 1915-1916, but also of the Russian Civil War which followed. The ship is one of just three British warships from World War I still in existence.

  15. Petworth Cottage Museum

    Type

    Type:

    Museum

    Petworth

    Welcome to this Leconfield estate-worker's cottage once the home of Mrs Cummings, a seamstress at Petworth House. Furnished as in 1910 it has a ground floor scullery and sitting room, with a kettle boiling on the coal-fired range.

  16. Aldershot Military Museum

    Type

    Type:

    Museums & Galleries

    Aldershot

    Housed in the only surviving brick-built barrack blocks left in Aldershot, Aldershot Military Museum tells the story of daily life for both soldier and civilian in the town since 1854. 

  17. SS Shieldhall

    Type

    Type:

    Boat Trip

    Southampton

    Shieldhall was laid down in October 1954 and entered service in October 1955. Built by Lobnitz & Co of Renfrew, she is of special interest as she was built on older classic lines with a traditional wheelhouse, of riveted and welded construction with

  18. Hollycombe - Steam in the Country

    Type

    Type:

    Funfair

    Liphook

    Hollycombe Steam in the Country offers visitors a nostalgic look at how the Victorians and Edwardians used steam as an instrument of work and play, featuring a number of popular fairground rides and sideshows of the period.