London's best in museums and galleries
London's spectacular autumn season is loaded with exciting new exhibitions at the city's museums and galleries. Here are a few of our top picks.
Go on an immersive journey through music and performance at the Victoria and Albert Museum exhibition Opera: Passion, Power and Politics and get up close with Mozart's own piano. At the National Maritime Museum's fascinating exhibition Death in the Ice, which features new archaeological evidence from recently discovered shipwrecks, follow the epic story of Sir John Franklin and his crew on their tragic last voyage into the arctic.
Delve into the origins of J. K. Rowling's wizarding world with Harry Potter: A History of Magic at the British Library, in what promises to be one of the season's biggest blockbusters. Don't miss the capital's hottest new attraction, the Postal Museum, which explores the history of the UK's postal system. Visitors can take a ride on a subterranean mail train that once shuttled four million letters across London in one day.
The Natural History Museum's newest star attraction is a gigantic blue whale skeleton that has replaced Dippy the Dinosaur in the grand Hintze Hall, alongside 10 other stand-out specimens in the ground floor alcoves. A must-see at the British Museum is Scythians: Warriors of Ancient Siberia, which shines a light on this ancient tribe of nomadic warriors with a slew of eye-popping artifacts, including rugs, furs, horse headgear and a 2,400-year-old piece of tattooed skin from the torso of a warrior.
Visit south London's Horniman Museum to see Pani, a thought-provoking display that explores the relationship between people and water in South Asia. The museum has dreamy gardens and quirky displays, including a walrus famously overstuffed by a Victorian taxidermist and a creepy-looking merman. Over in west London, car enthusiasts can get unprecedented access into the secretive world of car making at the Design Museum's Ferrari: Under the Skin.
The city's art scene is also in full swing this autumn, with exhibitions to suit all tastes. Opening in September at the Barbican is Basquiat: Boom for Real, the first large-scale exhibition of American artist Jean-Michel Basquiat, a pioneering prodigy of the downtown New York art scene and one of the most celebrated artists of the 1980s.
The works of one of the world's most influential living artists are on display at the Royal Academy of Arts with Jasper Johns: Something Resembling Truth, featuring paintings, prints, drawings and sculptures that chart his development over the last six decades.
The National Portrait Gallery is hosting Cézanne Portraits. One of the season's major exhibitions. More than 50 of the 19th-century artist's portraits will be displayed, including intimate paintings of the Post-Impressionist's wife, uncle and himself. Another must for art fans is the National Gallery's exhibition Reflection: Van Eyck and the Pre-Raphaelites, which explores how the Victorian artists were inspired by the 15th-century Flemish artist Van Eyck's masterpiece The Arnolfini Portrait.
In October, the international art world descends upon London for Frieze Week. Explore a free outdoor sculpture garden with Frieze Sculpture 2017 in Regent's Park's English Gardens, or pop into the beautiful tents that host Frieze Art Fairs, where galleries from all over the world exhibit their top talent and most-coveted works.
November sees Tate Modern opening a comprehensive retrospective of Modigliani, which will include a section dedicated to the famed Italian artist's nudes, as well as the gallery's first virtual reality experience, where visitors can enter the world of early 20th-century Paris.
Autumn in London is open. Book your London adventure by visiting united.com or through the United app. And while you're there, share your experience on social media with the hashtag #LondonIsOpen and #AutumnSeason.