Owned by the University of Manchester and housed in a striking, neo-Gothic building, the Manchester Museum has a vast collection that spans natural history, anthropology, and archaeology. Collection highlights include everything from a fossilized Tyrannosaurus Rex (nicknamed "Stan") to ancient Egyptian artifacts.
The Manchester Museum’s current collection stretches across seven primary galleries: Ancient Worlds (where Egyptian artifacts are on display); Fossils, Minerals and Meteorites; Living Worlds (which showcases exhibits as diverse as a piece of rubble from the Hiroshima atomic blast and a taxidermied tiger); the Manchester Gallery (dedicated to the city’s people and history); the Money Gallery; Nature’s Library (which contains a sprawling natural history collection); and the Vivarium (committed to reptile and amphibian conservation).
The Manchester Museum is completely free to visit, and its proximity to the city center makes it an accessible stop for those on a walking or cultural tour around town.
Things to Know Before You Go
- The Manchester Museum is the largest university museum in the country and has one of England’s most significant Egyptian artifact collections.
- A destination for architecture buffs, the Manchester Museum occupies a building designed by Alfred Waterhouse, who also created Manchester Town Hall.
- The museum space is fully accessible to all visitors.
How to Get There
The Manchester Museum is located within walking distance of Oxford Road station and is accessible via numerous local bus routes, including the 15, 41, 42, 43, 140–143, and 147. The museum also hosts secure bicycle parking, and the Booth Street West parking lot is nearby. For those on foot, it’s only a 15- to 20-minute walk from the city center.
When to Get There
The Manchester Museum is open daily 10am–5pm. The museum is currently in the midst of an in-depth renovation—its “hello future” initiative, set to conclude in 2021—that will add a new exhibition hall, a South Asia Gallery, a Chinese Culture Gallery, and more. Some existing galleries and other areas will be closed during the renovation process; prior to your visit, check to see which parts of the museum remain accessible to visitors.
The University of Manchester
As the Manchester Museum is located amidst the University of Manchester’s buildings, it’s worth coupling your explorations with a stroll around the campus. Nearby historical stops include Whitworth Hall, the Beyer Building, and other highlights of the Old Quad.