From the Beginning

A visitor comes face to face with an ancient bird

Explore the evolution of life on our planet in the From the Beginning gallery.

Discover early sea creatures, dinosaurs, mammals and ancient fossils. Go on a journey through time from the big bang to the present, and take a peek into the future. Find out how our solar system was formed, learn about the variety of life that's lived on our planet, and discover just how late humans arrived on the scene.

Star specimens and exhibits

  • 3,500 million year old microfossil that represent the earliest life on Earth
  • sea creatures that moved onto land, and some that went back to the water
  • evidence of flying reptiles and dino-birds
  • early whales, horses, bats and primates that thrived after dinosaur extinction
  • the animal species that humans have helped drive to extinction

Explore the galleries with the Museum map

Find out how to get around with the Museum map. There are four zones to discover.

Life recorded in fossils

Discover fossils from the Museum's collection in an online exhibition.

A collaboration between the Museum and Google Arts & Culture.