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Celebrate spring in a burst of colour as Sensational Butterflies returns to the Natural History Museum for its tenth year

This Easter, escape the city and get up close to nature at the Museum’s tropical butterfly house.

Step inside Sensational Butterflies and be immersed in the world of tropical butterflies. Follow the trail as it winds through an exotic habitat of flowers, vines and foliage. Pause at busy feeding stations to see butterflies feasting on fruit and nectar, and try to spot tiny caterpillars hidden in the foliage along the way.

Learn more about different ways to look at butterflies and how Museum scientists use powerful microscopes to reveal details smaller than the human eye can see. Find out why butterflies are so colourful, how many eyes they have and how long it takes a caterpillar to turn into a butterfly.

Featuring species found in the forests of Central and South America, Asia and Africa, see for yourself the bold colours and intricate beauty of nature’s most charming creatures.

‘The greatest biological diversity on the earth is concentrated in the tropical areas,’ says Dr Blanca Huertas, Senior Curator of Lepidoptera at the Natural History Museum. ‘Sensational Butterflies is a fantastic opportunity to see some of the most stunning butterfly and moth species from the tropics up close, and to engage with the richest biological diversity from across the planet.’

Luke Brown, Butterfly house manager said, ‘We strive to add more diversity every year and 2018 is no exception. As well as creating the perfect environment for favourites such as the striking Blue Morpho and the mischievous owl butterflies, this year we will be bringing more species of butterflies specifically from Central America, so even regular visitors may spot new additions.’

Highlights include:

  • Immersive experience and close-up observation of these incredible insects
  • Watch the bewitching life cycle of butterflies as they hatch from delicate chrysalises, unfolding their wings for the first time
  • Encountering exotic butterflies, a unique experience seeing non-native tropical species
  • Seeing butterflies feed, play and engage with each other
  • Butterfly-friendly tips and advice from the Butterfly House team

Sensational Butterflies is inspired by the Museum's world-leading butterfly and moth collection of more than 10 million specimens assembled over 200 years. The Collection is used by scientists around the world to study the diversity of the species and to investigate how they are affected by environmental changes.

As it enters its tenth year, Sensational Butterflies remains a spring and summer favourite, delighting families, schools and Londoners for a decade.

The Museum is delighted to announce that Sensational Butterflies 2018 is supported by Pukka Herbs, producer of organic herbal teas and wellbeing supplements, who share our love of the natural world.

Tickets on sale now

Dates and times:                  29 March - 16 September, 10.00 - 17.50 (last admission 17.15)

Admission:                            With voluntary donation*: 
                                                Single £6.50*, Family of 4 £22* (including at least 1 child)
                                                Family of 5 £26* (including at least 2 children)

                                                Single £5.85, Family of 4 £19.80 (including at least 1 child)
                                                Family of 5 £23.50 (including at least 2 children) 

Location:                               East Lawn
Nearest tube:                        South Kensington

*A voluntary donation is included in our admission ticket prices. If you are a UK taxpayer and pay the ticket price including donation, the Natural History Museum can reclaim the tax on the whole ticket price under the Gift Aid scheme. For every £100 worth of tickets sold, we can claim an extra £25 from the Government. This means you can further support the work of the Museum, at no extra cost to you.


Notes for editors

Please download and credit: © The Trustees of the Natural History Museum, London (Link address not for publication).

Media contact: Tel: +44 (0) 20 7942 5654/+44 (0)7799 690151 Email:

  • The Natural History Museum exists to inspire a love of the natural world and unlock answers to the big issues facing humanity and the planet. It is a world-leading science research centre, and through its unique collection and unrivalled expertise it is tackling issues such as food security, eradicating diseases and managing resource scarcity. The Natural History Museum is the most visited natural history museum in Europe and the top science attraction in the UK; we welcome more than 4.5 million visitors each year and our website receives over 500,000 unique visitors a month. People come from around the world to enjoy our galleries and events and engage both in-person and online with our science and educational activities through innovative programmes and citizen science projects.
  • Pukka create delicious organic herbal teas and incredible health supplements that take you on a journey of discovery to a healthier, happier life. ‘Pukka’ is a Hindi word meaning authentic.  This is at the heart of everything we do.  Our passion is to connect people, plants and planet through the wonder of herbs. All Pukka Herbs’ products are ethically sourced via sustainable means; certified organic, Fair for Life and FairWild. FairWild certification guarantees that all of the herbs used in our products have been harvested sustainably and that the growers have been paid fairly for their work.  Fair for Life is one of the fairest, most equitable and transparent fair trade systems in the world.  It guarantees that everyone who Pukka touches, from crop to cup, across the globe is treated fairly, equitably and transparently. Pukka Herbs is one of a handful of pioneering UK companies who have joined 1% for the Planet, pledging 1% of turnover to create positive environmental change – supporting schemes and organisations such as the FairWild, the Soil Association and the Natural History Museum to name but a few.