Housed within the walls of his own home, Sir John Soane’s Museum was designed to inspire students of architecture and drawing by providing examples of different architectural styles and decoration. It has been open to the public since 1837.
Sir John Soane was a successful British neoclassical architect, responsible for designing several important Regency-era buildings, including the Bank of England. After becoming professor of architecture at the Royal Academy, he decided to create a museum within his home (made up of three buildings in Lincoln’s Inn Fields) for his students, and the result is a quirky collection of copies of famous statues, Soane’s architectural models, and artifacts from ancient Egypt, Greece, and Rome.
Visit independently or book a tour that visits the museum, like the secret gardens excursion of London that includes afternoon tea.
Things to Know Before You Go
- Admission to the museum is free.
- The museum is wheelchair accessible but is narrow in parts. There are a few special custom-sized wheelchairs available.
- You can prebook a guided tour.
- The museum does not have a shop or cafe.
How to Get There
The museum is located at 13 Lincoln’s Inn Fields in Holborn, London. The closest tube (subway) stop is Holborn (Piccadilly and Central lines) which is a short walk away. Numerous buses including nos. 1, 59, and 188 stop nearby on Kingsway.
When to Get There
Sir John Soane’s museum is open from Wednesday to Sunday, from 10am–5pm. Last entry is at 4:30pm. It’s also open on bank holidays. Weekends are the busiest time to visit.
Take a Break at Lincoln’s Inn Fields
Thought to have inspired Central Park in New York, the urban green space at Lincoln’s Inn Fields is a popular spot to stop and take a break on any busy day out visiting London’s museums. Close to Sir John Soane’s Museum and the British Museum, it’s the largest public square in the city.