The Victoria & Albert Museum (V&A) in London, England
I know you're getting tired of superlatives, but the V&A truly is the greatest museum of decorative arts in the world—the definition of "fascinating" for some, of "a lesser circle of Hell" for others. Trust me, though, it's far, far, far more fascinating than it sounds. I am normally put to sleep by decorative arts museums, but I love this place.
While interior decorating aficionados are enjoying 14th-century embroidery, Chinese vases, Indian furnishings, and historic British candlesticks, less enthusiastic companions can amuse themselves with the largest collection of Renaissance sculpture outside Italy (featuring Donatello, Rossellino, and Bernini), rooms filled with glorious artifacts from across Asia, and the "Fakes and Forgeries" gallery, two high-ceilinged rooms packed with plaster casts of famous works of sculpture from around the world and throughout history.
Tube: South Kensington
Daily 10am–5:45 (Friday open until 10pm)
- Planning your time: I'd budget a bare minimum of an hour at the V&A (it's huge, and it sprawls, and it's tough to find all the interesting nooks and crannies). Two hours would be a wiser choice. ( on London Itineraries.)
- Take a tour of that includes a visit to the V&A with our partners at Viator.com: