London Tourist Attractions: Wax Museum and Planetarium
Have you ever wanted to get up close and personal with Brad Pitt, Julia Roberts, Will Smith and Shakespeare? The Madame Tussauds wax museum would allow you to meet the likenesses of these as well as other famous historians, Hollywood stars, musicians, authors, sports stars, world leaders.
The wax museum is known for its ancient roots and modern connections to present day stars and people in the news. It has expanded with other locations in Amsterdam, Hong Kong, Las Vegas and New York City.
Madame Tussaud was a wax sculptor who learned her craft of modeling by creating masks of those killed in 19th century France. She was a housekeeper for a physician Dr. Curtius who taught her the craft. When he died, he left his collection to Marie. She then opened an exhibit of the works in London in 1835.
One of best known, grisly attractions is the Chamber of Horrors. It is not designed to horrify however, the wax figures include the likes of victims of the French Revolution, murderers, criminals, warlords and others.
Some of the original sculptors done by the artist herself are still standing. She did a likeness of herself which is on display at the entrance of the museum.
It is a popular London attraction with well over a million visitors a year. Whoever your favorite personality is, chances are that their likeness will be at Madame Tussaudís. Many people want to have their picture taken with their favorite celebrity.
Some other famous wax figures include, Beyonce Knowles, george Clooney, George Bush, Madonna, Oprah Winfrey, Adolph Hitler, Ozzy Osbourne, Woody Allen, Andre Agassi, Arnold Palmer, Michael Jordan, Michelle Kwan, Tiger Woods, Luciano Pavarotti, Tina Turner, Sammy Davis Jr., Elvis Presley, Johnny Mathis,Blue Man Group, Bruce Springsteen, Charlie Chaplin, Robin Williams, Bob Hope, Princess Diana, George Burns, Nicolas Cage, Judy Garland, Jerry Springer, Joan Rivers, Yoko Ono and Shirley MacLaine.
The sculptors are fastidious in their craft to assure that the figures are true likenesses as well as a desire to have the image look alive.
The same building contains the London Planetarium which is located at the west wing of the building and is now called The Auditorium. Shows are scheduled throughout the day. You may want to call ahead to find out exact times the shows are open.
If you are interested in either one or both of these attractions, the best time to visit is early in the morning or later in the afternoon. Otherwise, you will need to wait in line for at least 30 minutes or so. Madame Tussaudís is a very popular tourist attraction, as well as for natives who visit to see the latest additions of wax images.