Natural History Museum UK’s most visited museum in 2021

Museum director Doug Gurr said, “I couldn’t be prouder of these phenomenal numbers given the enormous challenges posed by the pandemic – including the museum’s closure for over five months. This is a testament to the hard work and resilience of all our staff who ensured that visitors enjoyed the same world-class welcome and experience, as well as the innovative public program offering which included three temporary exhibitions: Our Broken Planet: How We Got Here and How to Fix It, Fantastic Beasts: Wonders of Nature and Wildlife Photographer of the Year. We are grateful to the Department of Digital, Culture, Media and Sport for their much-needed continued support which has enabled us to achieve these numbers, this will remain essential as we continue our recovery.

The Museum continues to see strong visitor numbers in 2022 so far, having already exceeded 2 million visitors during the financial year. The box office will remain in place for general admission to maintain comfortable capacity levels, reduce queues and ensure the best possible experience for visitors.

Director of Public Programs Alex Burch adds: “We have an exciting year ahead of us – we look forward to introducing a whole new generation to the nation’s favorite dinosaur with the opening of Dippy Returns in May and the start of the transformation. of our gardens as part of the Urban Nature project. As part of our drive to become a more inclusive museum, we continue to develop our community program and explore ways to engage underserved audiences.”

Attendance at the Natural History Museum

  • Despite more than five months of closure, 2021 has seen a 21% increase in the presence with 1,571,413 visitors
  • October mid-term (October 25-3) was the busiest week of 2021, with 90,000 visitors and admission tickets sell out all week
  • 98% available tickets have been booked during peak periods (weekends and school holidays) throughout 2021
  • The February semester week (February 14-20, 2022) saw a total of 82,000 visitors (60% of the total number of visitors in the February 2020 semester, although it is still operating at reduced capacity).
  • the Fantastic Beasts: Wonders of Nature exhibition, developed in partnership with the BBC and Warner Bros. had 128,000 visitors in 2021 and 135,000 overall – our second most successful gallery exhibition after Wildlife Photographer of the Year
  • The Museum’s critically acclaimed free exhibition Our Broken Planet: How We Got Here and How to Fix It display which challenges visitors to the planetary emergency, has already been seen by 500,000 visitors and is open for another five months
  • The exhibition of the Museum’s world famous photography exhibition Wildlife Photographer of the Year has already been seen by more 75,000 visitors so far – and is still open for another three months

Visit the highlights for 2022


  • Our Broken Planet: How We Got Here and How to Fix It and Wildlife Photographer of the Year 57 will be available to visit until June 5 and the end of summer 2022 respectively
  • Wildlife Photographer of the Year 58 opens in October 2022
  • The return of Dippy, the nation’s favorite dinosaur, is back for a limited time at the Natural History Museum in London, the free the facility opens May 27, 2022. Visitors can register now to be the first to know when free tickets are available to reserve


  • The Museum’s sold-out events run throughout the year, including the ever-popular Dino Snores for Kids, Dino Snores for Grown-ups, Silent Discos, Yoga at the Museum, Adventure Babies, Behind the Scenes Spirit Collection Tour
  • New additions for 2022 include Dinotours outside opening hours and Bring your own baby nature speaks for those with little ones in tow
  • Dawnosaurs: Relaxing Morning Tours are also back in full swing so kids with neurodiverse illnesses (including autism and other sensory processing difficulties) can enjoy it with their families, away from the hustle and bustle of the mainstream.
  • Later this month, the first in person Delays since 2020 will be a special evening of games inspired by science and the natural world – Lates: playful by nature. On this free evening on Friday, March 25, visitors can talk to Museum scientists and game developers. Highlights include a video game zone, a board game zone, and lectures by scientists on play behavior in humans and our animal relatives.

Highlight historical tours

  • Launching this month is all new Women in Science tours, the first of a future series, Highlight stories, which will highlight marginalized and historically underrepresented voices – sharing fascinating stories, inspiring achievements and contributions to natural history. The Women in Science Tour will welcome historical figures such as pioneering paleontologist Dorothea Bate as well as the all too often overlooked story of the role of Indigenous and enslaved women in founding the Museum’s collections and will feature some of the Museum’s current scientists. .



Natural History Media Contact: Phone. 0779 969 0151 Email: [email protected]

Notes to Editors

About the Natural History Museum

The Natural History Museum is both a world-renowned scientific research center and the most visited natural history museum in Europe. With a vision of a future in which people and the planet thrive, he is uniquely positioned to be a powerful champion for balancing the needs of humanity with those of the natural world.

It is the custodian of one of the most important scientific collections in the world comprising more than 80 million specimens. The breadth of this collection allows researchers around the world to document how species have responded and continue to respond to environmental change – which is essential to help predict what might happen in the future and inform policy and future plans to help the planet.

The Museum’s 300 scientists continue to represent one of the largest groups in the world studying and enabling research on all aspects of the natural world. Their science provides essential data to help the global fight to save the future of the planet from the main threats of climate change and biodiversity loss to the search for solutions such as the sustainable extraction of natural resources.

The Museum uses its enormous global reach and influence to fulfill its mission to create Earth Defenders – to inform, inspire and empower everyone to make a difference for nature. Our digital production reaches hundreds of thousands of people every month in over 200 countries and our traveling exhibitions have been seen by approximately 30 million people over the past 10 years.

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