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Imperial War Museum

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Imperial War Museum

KidRated’s Imperial War Museum Top Tips:

  • Don’t be put off by the word ‘war’ in the title, this is one of the most fascinating museums in London
  • If you enjoyed the Imperial War Museum be sure to head to HMS Belfast and the RAF Museum
  • Click here to see what else is on right now

Click here for information about the Night before the Somme late night event.


In 1917, whilst the First World War still raged, the Cabinet decided to set up a museum to collect and display material from the Great War, which was thought to be ‘the war to end all wars’. This theory was disproven with the event of WWII, during which time a German bomb landed on the museum’s Naval Gallery, destroying some of its naval models.


Luckily, the rest of the Imperial War Museum survived and now tells the tale of both the First and Second World Wars.


March your way through the museum and look at preserved artefacts, photographs, and hear stories from survivors, gaining a true sense of what it was like to be involved in and live through wartime captured at its best at the Imperial War Museum. Displayed across six floors, the museum’s vast collections encompass a wealth of objects – from uniforms to photographs, vehicles to films, weapons to works of art – each with a story to tell.


The museum suggests that the Holocaust gallery might be too harrowing for children under the age of fourteen. However, parents can take younger kids at their own discretion.

Booking Advice:

  • Admission is free (apart from special exhibitions)
  • Book online for special exhibitions to avoid disappointment
  • Private tours can be booked online



IWM London
Lambeth Road
London SE1 6HZ

Phone number:

+44 (0)20 7416 5000


How to get there:

The nearest stations are Waterloo (which is a ten to 15-minute walk away), and Elephant and Castle (a 15-minute walk away). The nearest station is Elephant & Castle which is about a ten minute walk away. You can reach the museum via routes 3, 12, 53, 59, 148, 159, 344, 360, 453 and C10.

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Teen Verdict

Things to do, places to go for kids and teenagers - cool, academic, fun and entertaining in London and beyond with KidRated


I honestly really loved this museum. It was so inspiring and heartbreaking at the same time. Being to read about survivors stories and those who didn’t make it was extremely interesting. I loved seeing the real artefacts from the wars and the photographs that depicted such a different time. I would recommend this to anyone wanting to learn a bit more about the wars and gain new insights. Really great museum.

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  1. Sarah Canelle

    My 8 & 11 year old boys both enjoyed our trip. I wasn’t sure they would, but the exhibits were far more interactive than I was expecting and really held their attention. Plus the vehicles were a hit. We walked there from Waterloo station, proving it’s easy to get to.

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