Body Worlds offers a unique perspective on biology, that isn't for the squeamish. Based on the work of anatomist Gunther von Hagens, the exhibition features a collection of animal and human bodies. From giraffes to elephants, a huge chunk of the animal kingdom is represented.
However, there's a catch. None of the figures on display has any skin, exposing the muscles, tissues, and skeletons of each animal for viewers to see. The London version of this global phenomenon is based on the London Pavilion near Piccadilly Circus, and provides an experience that is both entertaining and educational - with a touch of horror thrown in.
The exhibition is open every day from 10am to 7pm (last entry 1 hour before closing time).
Every last Friday of the month last entry will be 9pm
Pre-book your tickets online, with a minimum of 24 hours to enjoy the best-discounted rates.
If you have ever wanted to go beyond the surface of the human body, to see what's underneath our skin, Body Worlds is an unmissable attraction. Inspired by the creations of Gunther von Hagens, since October 2018, the exhibition has found a permanent home at the London Pavilion on Shaftesbury Avenue, five minutes away from Piccadilly Circus.
One of the foremost anatomists in the world, Von Hagens became famous in the 1990s with his exhibitions. Using a technique called plastination, he and his team have found a way to preserve all kinds of animals for medical and educational purposes, resulting in incredibly powerful scientific displays.
Body Worlds features several human bodies that have been donated by volunteers. It might sound grizzly, but visitors tend to be fascinated by the muscles and tissues on display, providing a totally new understanding of how bodies move and work. Trained medical professionals provide tours of the exhibits - a great educational experience for younger attendees.
Visitors can also undergo what are called "body composition tests". Using a system known as Boditrax, exhibition staff will carry out a 30 second analysis of the visitor's body, resulting in illuminating information about their metabolic efficiency, weight, and skeletal strength. It even provides a read out of the visitor's "biological age", which can sometimes be surprising to learn.
There's also a section called "Animals Inside Out", which deals with the animal kingdom. Expect cross sections of an elephant's trunk, and a close-up look at the giraffe's 20-inch long tongue - sights that you won't find anywhere else.
Overall, the attraction offers an uncensored perspective on the fundamentals of life. Most visitors emerge with a deeper sense of human and animal biology, and a fascination with what lies beneath the surface.