Today (9 October) sees the official opening of the Fantastic Beasts™: The Wonder of Nature exhibition, one part of an exciting new partnership between the Natural History Museum, the BBC Studios Natural History Unit and Warner Bros. It is sponsored by Google Arts and Culture. And a BBC documentary celebrating the exhibition will soon be coming in 2021 as well.
The hotly anticipated exhibition was delayed from the summer due to the pandemic, but its doors open today and tickets are on sale here. It features 120 exhibits, from a real-life dinosaur named after Hogwarts – the Dracorex Hogwartsia – to wizarding favourites such as Nifflers and Bowtruckles.
Follow in the footsteps of the fictional Magizoologist Newt Scamander, real-life explorers of history, and the scientists and curators at the museum as you venture into the wild to discover more about some of the most awe-inspiring creatures ever known.
Accounts of merpeople and supposed unicorn horns sit alongside the rarely glimpsed Mooncalf and magnificent Occamy. Through a powerful combination of science, nature and your imagination, you can explore fantastic beasts in all their forms, and learn how the natural world has inspired some of the most incredible stories and folklore ever told.
In a year where the Natural History Museum has declared a climate emergency, the exhibition seeks to create advocates for the planet – inspiring visitors through stories and actions they can take to care and provide protection for the natural world. Fantastic beasts from the wizarding world such as the Erumpent will help shine a light on creatures of the natural world that find themselves struggling for survival.
The exhibition is a sensory feast and visitors need not worry because the Natural History Museum has a robust set of Covid-19 protocols and processes in place, including limiting numbers to the exhibition space and social distancing measures. You can read more about that here.
If you’re already a Harry Potter Fan Club member, you can access some exclusive digital content through the exhibition’s activity trail booklet – when you scan the winged keys inside it with the Harry Potter Fan Club app. The activity booklet is available from the ticket desk before you enter the exhibition. It’s full of fun activities and places to record your discoveries along the way.
Who knows – there might be future explorers and conservationists about to enter the Natural History Museum for the first time!