Small groups of children and adults looking in display cases in the Enlightenment gallery.

Event information

9 Dec 2023 – 30 Mar 2024


Meeting point

Main entrance – Great Russell Street (WC1B 3DG)


  • £33
  • £30 (Members)
    £30 (Concessions: students, jobseekers, disabled visitors)
    £16.50 (Ages 5–15 years)
    Free for under 5s and disabled visitors' assistant (no booking required)

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Explore the oldest room in the Museum in this special guided tour before the galleries open to the public.

Uncover the origins of an extraordinary collection as you learn about the beginnings of the British Museum in 1753 and its subsequent development. The Enlightenment gallery (Room 1) focuses on the 18th century, an era of new knowledge, scientific discovery and European colonialism. The Collecting the world gallery (Room 2) focuses on the growth of the collection from the 18th century to the present day.

This tour provides a thought-provoking introduction to the Museum, which you're free to explore afterwards.

Galleries on this tour:

Room 1: Enlightenment
Room 2: Collecting the world

Booking information

  • The tour will begin at 09.00 and will last for 60 minutes.
  • Please meet at the Main entrance on Great Russell Street (WC1B 3DG) at 08.50 with your email confirmation.
  • This tour is limited to a maximum of 20 places per session. If you would like to bring a group of 10 or more people or arrange a special out-of-hours tour, please email to discuss your options.
  • To ensure a safe and enjoyable visit, in line with recent government guidance, face coverings are recommended for the protection of yourself and others, unless you’re exempt. Please be considerate of people and exercise social distancing where you can – especially in smaller spaces. Hand sanitiser stations can be found throughout the Museum and we recommend washing or sanitising your hands regularly. See the Visit page for more information.
  • All measures are subject to change in accordance with government guidelines and Museum regulations. Further information can be found in our FAQs section.