London has ALL the museums. No really. So many museums, and most if not all are free, and that, my friends, is how it should be done. Jen and I went to three -- the National Gallery, the British Museum, and the Tate Modern.
The National Gallery faces Trafalgar Square, which is a sight in and of itself with all the crazy buskers and that weird blue rooster (and of course Nelson's Column). If you want to go to one traditional art museum while you're in London, this one is it. They have a huge collection Western European art, Renaissance art, and impressionist and post-impressionist pieces. Two highlights -- Van Gogh's Sunflowers and Degas's Dancers (one of my favorites).
The British Museum is full of artifacts from a bajillion ancient civilizations -- ancient Egypt, Rome, the Middle East, etc. We're more obnoxious art kids than history buffs, so we stumbled around this one pretty quickly, looking for the highlights like the Rosetta Stone and an Easter Island sculpture. But the building itself is very cool architecturally, and if you're into ancient civilizations, this is probably the best museum out there.
And then finally the Tate Modern (there are four Tates, so for the sake of brevity, when I refer to "the Tate," from here on out, I'm talking about Tate Modern). Alright, so I'm pretty sure I've mentioned this before, but I'll say it again. I love art museums, and of all the art museums I've been to in the world, this one is my absolute favorite. I looked forward to visiting the Tate possibly as much as I looked forward to being surrounded by accents, if not more. I think it is a perfect museum in its setup, and I love its permanent collection. It's my happy place. I think I talked this one up way too much to Jen and she was not as impressed, and even though they didn't have an exhibit in the Turbine Hall, it is still my favorite. Plus, there were multiple installations that looked like poop, and I giggled and took photos like a 14-year-old, and then when a couple of 14-year-olds came in the room, they giggled and took photos too, and I questioned myself.
I also thoroughly enjoyed the installation that looks like strung-up balls, you know, like of the testicle variety, not the tennis variety, and for the select few of you who know me very well and know why the Tate is now very significant to me, you know how appropriate this is. o:)