Museum of London - Docklands

The Museum of London has a large collection that explores the City of London from prehistoric times all the way to the present.

Facade and entrance to the Museum of London Docklands

London, a city steeped in history and culture, offers travelers a myriad of attractions to explore. One hidden gem that often escapes the mainstream tourist radar is the Museum of London in Docklands. Nestled in the heart of Canary Wharf, this museum is a treasure trove of maritime history, providing a fascinating journey through London's past as a bustling port city.

The Museum of London in Docklands is conveniently situated in the historic West India Quay, just a stone's throw away from Canary Wharf. This location is not only rich in history but also easily accessible, making it an excellent addition to your London itinerary.

The Musuem's Location

The Museum of London in Docklands is conveniently situated in the historic West India Quay, just a stone's throw away from Canary Wharf. This location is not only rich in history but also easily accessible, making it an excellent addition to your London itinerary.

The Building

Housed in a Grade I-listed warehouse, the museum itself is a testament to London's maritime heritage. The building, with its exposed brickwork and industrial charm, provides the perfect backdrop for the extensive collection of artifacts and exhibits within.

Exploring the Galleries

The museum is divided into several galleries, each offering a unique perspective on London's maritime history. Here are some highlights:

Sailortown: Step back in time to the 19th century and experience life in Sailortown. This immersive gallery recreates the sights and sounds of a bustling dockside community, complete with narrow streets, shops, and taverns. It's a captivating glimpse into the daily lives of sailors and dock workers.

London, Sugar & Slavery: Delve into London's involvement in the transatlantic slave trade and the impact it had on the city's development. This thought-provoking exhibit explores the historical connections between London, the Caribbean, and West Africa, shedding light on a dark chapter in the city's past.

Warehouse of the World: Uncover the story of London as a global trading hub. The exhibit showcases the vast array of goods that passed through the city's docks, emphasizing London's role as the "Warehouse of the World." From tea to textiles, the collection highlights the diverse and interconnected nature of global trade.

Mudlarks: For a family-friendly experience, the Mudlarks gallery is a hands-on, interactive space designed for younger visitors. Children can explore the mudlarking tradition along the River Thames, uncovering hidden treasures and learning about the history of this unique practice.

Events and Activities

The Museum of London in Docklands regularly hosts events, workshops, and guided tours, providing visitors with opportunities to engage more deeply with the exhibits. Check the museum's schedule to see if there are any special events or activities during your visit.

The Museum of London is open daily except for December 24th-26th and it has free admission, making it a great place to visit for anyone travelling on a budget.

For more information about the Museum of London as well as exhibitions and hours visit their official website.

Facts For Your Visit

Fee: No

Museum of London - Docklands Hours:
Opening hours may differ on holidays

  • Monday: 10:00 AM – 5:00 PM
  • Tuesday: 10:00 AM – 5:00 PM
  • Wednesday: 10:00 AM – 5:00 PM
  • Thursday: 10:00 AM – 5:00 PM
  • Friday: 10:00 AM – 5:00 PM
  • Saturday: 10:00 AM – 5:00 PM
  • Sunday: 10:00 AM – 5:00 PM

Address: No 1, West India Quay, Hertsmere Rd, London E14 4AL, UK

Phone: 020 7001 9844

Official Website: Museum of London - Docklands

Museum of London - Docklands Reviews

Rated 4.6 out of 5 Star Rating

5 Star Rating Excellent museum in a 200 year old warehouse about ten minutes walk from Canary Wharf Underground Station. The museum explores the long history of London as a port through stories of trade, migration and commerce. Among other things, the museum's exhibits cover: how the warehouses operated; the slave and sugar trade; merchants, sailors and pirates; the Docklands during the second world war; and the ups and downs of the docks culminating in their closure and their redevelopment. The museum has a good cafe and caters for all ages with an interactive space for children up to 8. Very friendly and helpful staff. Well worth a visit.
John Carr (Corinne and John) - a month ago

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4 Star Rating A wonderful museum a short walk away from West India Quays. An enlightening experience on how Canary Wharf became Canada Wharf, with an interesting exhibition on Sugar, Slavery and Abolition in Britain on the top floor. There are areas of the museum that have been modelled to look like old london, which was a nice experience, and it felt nice to understand the wider historical context of London. Definitely recommend
Perhaps - a week ago

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5 Star Rating Amazing museum, especially for being free entry! Three very large floors of exhibits about the Docklands with tons of artifacts, multimedia storytelling, and in-depth context on everything. I could have easily spent a whole day here, so I limited myself to “only” two hours.
Derek Lee - a month ago

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5 Star Rating Lifts to all floors, everything starts at top level and works down which I think is brilliant. Not too expensive food wise, due to the age of the building toilets on upper level were out of service but got a few on ground level. A good level for kids to make a bridge, lay bricks and masses of history some terrible (slavery) some outstanding. Well worth the visit.
paul chappell - 2 weeks ago

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5 Star Rating I've just visited this museum today and it went ABOVE AND BEYOND any of my expectations! The history trail starts on floor 3 and as you read, watch, and explore, you make your way down to the ground floor. The explanations about the history of the London docklands are excellent, my compliments to the curators of this incredible museum. It touches on everything about London's naval history, from the discovery of the Indies to the slave trade of the British Empire, all the way to World War II. Well worth a read in order to understand the history and learn from it. The museum is also full of fun facts and infographics for kids so that it's not just a boring museum (I spotted loads of cheeky toy mice around the exhibits) and there are activities and pamphlets that make it interactive. I also loved the reconstruction of a market near the docklands, it's so immersive and beautiful, it feels like a jump back in time. There's a coffee shop on the ground level for any snacking you need, as it takes at least 2 hours to go through (if you want to read). The building is a beautiful warehouse and even the history of that is explained in the beginning. It's free so that's a +1 in my book, and I didn't need to book at all, you can just walk in and look around.
MG Londoner - a month ago

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Tube Line Nearest Station Walking Time
JubileeCanary Wharf12 Minutes

How to get to Museum of London - Docklands by Tube

From Canary Wharf Exit via Jubilee Plaza, turn right (north) through the plaza and up the stairs, turn left onto S. Colonnade, turn right into Cabot Square, continue north past the fountain and across the North Dock Footbridge, turn left and follow the West India Quay Promenade to the museum entrance at the western end.

Taking LOndon River Services to Canary Wharf is also a great option for getting to the Museum of London in Docklands.

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