Roald Dahl illustration from Matilda, showing school children and Miss Trunchbull.

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13 ways to be brave at the Museum

We've teamed up with Roald Dahl to celebrate Roald Dahl Day on Friday 13 September. Be brave just like Matilda and go on an adventure around the galleries.

Take on a T. rex

Stomp your way through the Dinosaurs gallery and take on a life-size Tyrannosaurus rex. It's one of the largest carnivores ever to have walked Earth. 

Peek at a python

Look past their slippery nature and discover the amazing anatomy of the Indian python's (Python molurus) backbone in the Fishes, Amphibians & Reptiles gallery

Face danger in the field

Museum palaeontologists on the Mission Jurassic dino dig descend a steep slope in the American wilderness while exploring the area

It's not all lab work at the Museum. Our scientists visit deserts, rainforests and the Arctic. Some even went to Wyoming to dig for dinosaurs.

Have a go at our quiz about the trials and tribulations they faced, or find out how you can become a palaeontologist.

Stare down a scorpion


There are creepy crawlies of all sizes in the collection including a larger-than-life scorpion. Face your fears head-on in the Creepy Crawlies gallery

Team up with a trailblazer

A specimen of Ichthyosaurus communis that was discovered by Mary Anning

Find out about some of the trailblazers who paved the way for women in science like Mary Anning, the unsung hero of fossil discovery.

Visit the Fossil Marine Reptiles gallery and see some of Mary's finds including the first ichthyosaur ever found, and one of the most complete plesiosaurs. 

Venture into a volcano

Studying live volcanoes helps us understand eruptions. Scientists go on field trips to stake-out individual volcanoes, watching every twitch to develop a profile of their behaviour.

In the Volcanoes and Earthquakes gallery, see a heat suit that scientists wear to keep safe in the searing temperatures.

Watch out for wasps

Despite their occasional aggression, wasps are not to be feared. Find out how wasps support our ecosystem.

Step into the solar system

close up image of the Imilac meteorite

Blast off around the galleries to see pieces of Mars and big meteorites

Protect the planet

Walk beneath the largest animal ever to have lived. Suspended from the ceiling of Hintze Hall, the 25.2-metre-long blue whale skeleton is named Hope as a symbol of humanity's power to shape a sustainable future.

Blue whales were hunted to the brink of extinction in the twentieth century, but were also one of the first species that humans decided to save on a global scale. 

Meet your ancestors

Skeletons of chimpanzee, Australopithecus sediba and a modern human

A skeleton comparison display showing living and extinct relatives

Find out about one of our closest ancient ancestors in the Human Evolution gallery. Step back in time and see how they moved, hunted and adapted to a changing world.

See the 420,000-year-old Clacton spear, the oldest preserved wooden spear in the world, and a 3.5-million-year-old hominin canine.

Dare to dive deep

The Mammals (blue whale model) gallery

Go on an underwater expedition of the Fishes, Amphibians & Reptiles, Mammals (blue whale model) and Marine Invertebrates galleries to see the diversity of water-dwelling life.

Keep an eye out for a tooth of the now-extinct megalodon, the rare two-tusked narwhal and the giant clam.

Experience an earthquake

Learn about how scientists study earthquakes all over the world. Head through the Volcanoes and Earthquakes gallery and prepare to hold on tight: you're in for a rumble in the earthquake room, where you'll get a glimpse into what life was like for residents of Kobe, Japan, during the 1995 earthquake.

Discover the power of plants

A scientist in the wildlife garden, pointing out the meadow area to two children

Take time to explore.

The Wildlife Garden provides a home for over 3,000 species of plants and animals. You can see examples of woodland, grassland, scrub, heath, fen, aquatic, reedbed, hedgerow and urban UK habitats.