With a National Art Pass you get
The more you see, the more we do.
The National Art Pass lets you enjoy free entry to hundreds of museums, galleries and historic places across the UK, while raising money to support them.
Spanning half a million years of art, history and archaeology, the University of Oxford’s Ashmolean Museum is home to gems from around the world.
Founded in 1683, the Ashmolean Museum lays a claim to being Britain's oldest public museum – and the world’s first university museum. These historic origins are surpassed, however, by the breadth of the museum’s offer: the collection, free displays, special exhibitions and events here are all guided by the importance of understanding humanity across diverse cultures and eras.
Even the menus for lunch and afternoon tea in the Rooftop Restaurant and Terrace often reflect current themes within the museum’s programming – with the views over the rooftops making this one of the building’s highlights. Equally unmissable are the striking works within the museum’s collection, which include Michelangelo’s studies for the Sistine Chapel, a carved entirely from lapis lazuli, and works of art by Sickert, Manet and Pissarro.
The museum’s galleries span five floors, beginning below ground with displays that explore the role of reading, writing and money across cultures internationally. On the Ground Floor, discover how transport and travel connected the ancient world – and don’t miss one of the oldest and best preserved collections of casts from historic monuments. The First and Second floors cover both Eastern and Western cultures, while the Third Floor concentrates on art from the 19th to the 21st century.
Few visitors will be aware that credit for the museum’s original collection actually belongs to two gardeners, a father and son team who collected specimens and artefacts while working abroad for the Earl of Salisbury. Uncover the Ashmolean Museum’s own fascinating history, as well as discoveries from around the world, on your visit.
When making shop purchases online, National Art Pass members can use the code ARTPASS10 in the 'Apply discount code' field at the checkout screen to receive 10% off.
Why you should go
Five floors of global history and culture
Gems include Guy Fawkes’ lantern
The rooftop restaurant overlooks the beautiful university city of Oxford