High Street, Ipswich IP1 3QH
Ipswich Museum is located right in the heart of the town. It takes visitors on a journey through time, from the Iron Age, through the Roman occupation and Saxon periods. As one of the oldest towns in England, Ipswich has lots of history to share.
The original foundation of 1846, devoted primarily to Natural History, was moved to the premises in the High Street in 1881. Over the years it has merged with other collections to become Suffolk’s best museum of natural history.
The Ipswich museum is most famous for its mammoth skull. Located right in the entrance, this incredible specimen was pulled out of the North Sea in the 1970s. There are also mammoth remains that have been dug up from inside Ipswich itself. The resident mammoth replica is called Wool.i.am.
On the first floor, you will discover an extensive collection of birds. The Ogilvie Bird Collection includes many rare and beautiful birds, from woodpeckers to peacocks and birds of paradise.
The museum also has a section dedicated to Egyptology. It is the proud holder of a 2,500-year-old mummy, called Lady Ta-Hathor. This area has a lot of hands-on activities that teach visitors about excavation, hieroglyphics and the burial process.
And, of course, there is the Ipswich Story. This extensive display acts as the connecting thread as you make your way through the museum. It tells the story of Ipswich, from its Iron Age origins, all the way through to the present day.
Once you are done exploring the museum, don’t forget to pick up a memento at the gift shop. The shop offers a wide range of products, from activity books for children to Egyptian figures, homeware and best of all, cuddly woolly mammoths!
The museum is open Tuesday to Sunday and admission is gloriously free! So, there is no reason not to add the Ipswich museum to your itinerary when you visit Ipswich.