18 things to do this summer for adults
Is there anything better than summer in London? If you're sticking around town, there's a stack of things to see and do in June, July and August 2019.
Have a picnic on the Museum's front lawn (or in nearby Hyde Park), nibble cheese and sip wine by moonlight or go on a safari in the galleries. There's also yoga under the Moon and space Lates to celebrate the fiftieth anniversary of the Apollo 11 Moon landing.
The Natural History Museum
London SW7 5BD
Open every day 10.00-17.50
Last entry 17.30
Closed 24-26 December
Your Instagram feed will look out of this world. Get up-close with Luke Jerram's Museum of the Moon, a free installation in the Jerwood Gallery. The suspended six-metre model has detailed NASA imagery of the lunar surface and ambient moonlight, all set to an evolving soundscape.
Until 5 January 2020. Free, no booking required
2. Dive into the ocean
From outer space to the deepest oceans, go on an underwater exploration of the Fishes, Amphibians & Reptiles, Mammals (blue whale model) and Marine Invertebrates galleries to see the variety of water-dwelling life.
Keep an eye out for a tooth of the now-extinct megalodon, the rare unicorn-like two-tusked narwhal and the giant clam.
And you can't miss Hope the blue whale in Hintze Hall - just look up!
3. Go on safari
Reacquaint yourself with your Lion King favourites ahead of the new film's release on 19 July. Head to the Mammals gallery to see a lion and hyena and then to Mammals (blue whale model) for a smiley-looking warthog.
Keep an eye out for supporting cast including wildebeest, elephants, a zebra and a hippopotamus. Don't miss the giraffe in Hinzte Hall!
4. Learn about Mary Anning
Legendary fossil hunter Mary Anning is said to be the inspiration behind the classic nursery rhyme 'she sells sea shells'. But in reality, she was selling far more important fossils such as ammonites, belemnites and ichthyosaurs.
Wander along the Fossil Marine Reptiles gallery where you can see some of Mary's finds, including a 6.38-metre-long plesiosaur skeleton.
Delve deeper into the collections with a behind-the-scenes tour of the spirit collection where you can meet Archie the giant squid, along with Darwin's octopus, all preserved in jars (and tanks).
Various dates, £15, bookings essential
And for good reason. It's a busy place in warmer months with leaf-cutter bees and common carder bees hard at work. We might see the uncommon yellow loosestrife bee once its namesake plant is flowering near the reed bed.
Watch out for the electric-blue azure damselflies and Britain's bulkiest dragonfly - the emperor dragonfly - darting around. Permanent, free
The aptly named coconut crab is like a hermit crab, only bigger - much bigger. Fully grown, it can reach the size of a small dog. Coconut crabs scale palm trees in search of their namesake tropical fruit, their favourite snack.
Head to the Zoology spirit building to see a smaller one preserved in a jar. You'll find it in the Crustacea section in the fifth bay from the staircase.
A little bit spaceship, a whole lotta cool: the top two floors of the futuristic-looking Cocoon in the Darwin Centre are a hub of activity. See scientists hard at work in our labs and find out how we store, care for and use our 20 million entomology and botany specimens. Permanent, free
You better brie-lieve it when we say you'll enjoy our cheese and wine experience under the Moon. An expert will guide you through the tasting notes of four types of cheese - a goat, bloomy rind, semi-hard and blue - each paired with a tasting glass of wine.
23 July, 13 August and 20 August. Adult £48.75, Member £43.88
Roam the galleries with a drink in hand, meet scientists at pop-up science stations and gaze at Hope lit up in Hintze Hall at our monthly Lates event.
In June we take a look at the role digital technologies play in museums, July sees us blasting off into space (it is the fiftieth anniversary of the Apollo 11 Moon landing, after all) and we delve into our collections in August.
28 June, 26 July and 30 August. Free entry, no booking required. Some activities are paid.
Find your groove to the best in pop, rock and party classics as three DJs do battle over separate wireless channels at our Silent Disco.
The fun kicks off after our monthly Lates event (excluding September and December). Adult £22, Member £20
This World Giraffe Day (21 June), say hello to the giraffes in Hintze Hall. By studying specimens likes these - one with its skin and one with its skeleton revealed - scientists can work out how giraffes evolved.
Find out more about giraffes, including why they have such long necks, with Museum scientist Dr Natalie Cooper on the audio guide narrated by Sir David Attenborough. Permanent, free
On your marks. Get set. Go! Strap on your running shoes and Race for Nature. Take part in a 5k or 10k run through beautiful Hyde Park and raise money for the Museum's vital work in tackling our world's biggest environmental challenges.
10 August, £21.00-£26.50
The new rotation of the Expeditions and Endeavours exhibition starts on 12 July.
See artworks from Captain James Cook's second and third Pacific voyages, and highlights of Sydney Parkinson's work, including this Bermuda chub (Kyphosus sectatrix), painted aboard the HMS Endeavour in 1768.
Free, no booking required
16. Have a picnic
Roll out your picnic rug or nab a table at the outdoor cafe. Pick up burgers, salads or delicious baked goods, or visit the pop-up ice-cream van for a cool treat. A barbecue also operates throughout the school holidays.
Access to the front lawn is via the corner of Exhibition and Cromwell roads, or as you exit the Museum from Hintze Hall. Hyde Park is also a short walk away for more park hangs.
17. Marvel at the actual Moon
Astronauts from the USA's Apollo Moon missions are the only humans to have left Earth and landed on another celestial body. After the final mission - Apollo 17 in 1972 - President Nixon gave fragments as goodwill gestures to 135 countries around the world, including the UK. This piece of the Moon can be seen in the Treasures gallery.
A larger piece from the Apollo 16 mission, loaned to us from the United States government, is on display in the Earth Hall near the Stegosaurus skeleton.
From meteorites to mammoths, evolution to the climate crisis, Nature Live talks are a great way to explore the natural world. Meet our scientists and learn about their latest research. The talks run for 30 minutes every week on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays in the Attenborough Studio.
Free, no booking required