About the Horniman

We are the Horniman Museum and Gardens, an inspiring, surprising, family-friendly, free attraction in South London’s Forest Hill.

We’ve been open since Victorian times, when Frederick John Horniman first opened his house and extraordinary collection of objects to visitors. Since then, our collection has grown tenfold and includes internationally important collections of Anthropology and Musical Instruments, as well as an acclaimed Aquarium, a Butterfly House and Natural History collection. Learn more about the History of the Horniman Museum and Gardens.

The Horniman connects us all with global cultures and the natural environment, encouraging us to shape a positive future for the world we all share. Today, the Horniman is London’s only museum where environment, ecology and human cultures can be seen side by side at a global scale. In 2022, the Horniman was recognised as Art Fund Museum of the Year.

Unusually for such an important Museum, you can see our collection up-close and face-to-face. You can even pick up, try on and play with some of our objects.


Our visitors come time and again to explore our free Museum, take part in our activities and enjoy our 16-acre gardens. And they discover something fascinating and mesmerising every time.

Art Fund Museum of the Year 2022 Winner logo

A collage of logos: We're good to go, Visit England awards, Hoop awards, Museum & Heritage show award winner, Horticultural Week award winner, Family Arts Standard logo, Sandford award, Trip advisor certificate of excellence, Kids in Museums award winner, Green flag award, Museum of the year award, and golden star award winner