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Build your own itineraries by clicking the Add to Excursion button to add an item to your Itinerary basket.

www.canterburytales.co.uk

www.canterburytales.co.uk

Canterbury Tales Visitor Attraction, Kent

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.

Top ten museums in South East England

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 River & Rowing Museum 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.

If your South East of England break involves a day trip to London we can highly recommend the Cutty Sark, Royal Observatory Greenwich and the National Maritime Museum.

Museums Near Me

Use the 'Map View' button below to find museums near you in South East England.

In this section

Attractions

De La Warr Pavilion

A modernist icon for contemporary arts on the south coast of England

The first public Modernist building to be opened in the UK in 1935, this Grade 1 listed, internationally renowned icon re-opened after a £9m lottery...

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  1. Add De La Warr Pavilion to your Itinerary

    De La Warr Pavilion

    Type

    Gallery

    Location

    Bexhill

    The De La Warr Pavilion is a Grade 1 listed Modernist icon for contemporary arts on the sea front in Bexhill

  2. Add Winchester City Mill & Shop to your Itinerary

    Winchester City Mill & Shop

    Type

    Water Mill

    Location

    Winchester

    A Millennium of milling history. Rebuilt in 1744 on an earlier medieval site, the working watermill spans the River Itchen. Flour making demonstrations take place on Saturdays and Sundays.

  3. Add HMS Victory at Portsmouth Historic Dockyard to your Itinerary

    HMS Victory at Portsmouth Historic Dockyard

    Type

    Historic Ship

    Location

    HM Naval Base, Portsmouth

    There have been many celebrated warships in Britain’s naval history but HMS Victory can justifiably claim to be the most famous of them all. Having served as Vice-Admiral Lord Nelson’s flagship at the Battle of Trafalgar.

  4. Add Dinosaur Isle to your Itinerary

    Dinosaur Isle

    Type

    Museum

    Location

    Sandown

    In a spectacular pterosaur shaped building on Sandown’s blue flag beach walk back through fossilised time and meet life sized replica dinosaurs

  5. Add Maidstone Museum & Bentlif Art Gallery to your Itinerary

    Maidstone Museum & Bentlif Art Gallery

    Type

    Museum

    Location

    Maidstone

    An exceptional regional museum set within an Elizabethan manor house. Special collections of medieval, English and European art and artefacts, Victoriana, Roman and saon finds and natural history including Maidstone's dinosaur!

  6. Add St. Barbe Museum and Art Gallery to your Itinerary

    St. Barbe Museum and Art Gallery

    Type

    Museum

    Location

    Lymington

    St. Barbe Museum explores the unique history of Lymington and the New Forest Coast.
    The colourful, hands-on displays provide a fascinating journey of discovery for all ages.

  7. Add Winchester's Military Museums to your Itinerary

    Winchester's Military Museums

    Type

    Museum

    Location

    Winchester

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

  8. Add Paradise Park to your Itinerary

    Paradise Park

    Type

    Theme Park

    Location

    Newhaven

    Planet Earth at Paradise Park is the perfect day out for all ages. Discover the fascinating world of animals and plants from millions of years ago to the present day in the Museum of Life.

  9. Add HMS Warrior at Portsmouth Historic Dockyard to your Itinerary

    HMS Warrior at Portsmouth Historic Dockyard

    Type

    Historic Ship

    Location

    HM Naval Base, Portsmouth

    HMS Warrior 1860 was Britain’s first iron-hulled, armoured warship and the pride of Queen Victoria’s Fleet. On her first voyage, HMS Warrior caused a sensation; people crowded to see her and she was considered invincible.

  10. Add St Augustine's Abbey to your Itinerary

    St Augustine's Abbey

    Type

    Abbey / Priory

    Location

    Canterbury

    This great Abbey, marking the rebirth of Christianity in southern England, was founded in AD 597 by St Augustine.