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“OK but nothing special”

Canterbury Roman Museum
Ranked #15 of 110 things to do in Canterbury
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Recommended length of visit: 1-2 hours
Owner description: Canterbury Roman Museum’s story began on what appeared to be a rather unremarkable day in 1868. When workmen, digging trenches for a new drainage system, reached eight feet below street level they unwittingly unearthed a beautifully preserved Roman floor mosaic. Fast-forward to the aftermath of the Second World War, when excavations began under the cellars of shops destroyed by bombing, and another startling discovery was made. Archaeologists had just revealed an under-floor heating system, wall paintings, and a dazzling mosaic corridor. The site was no longer an isolated floor mosaic, but the remains of a very large, and no doubt very costly, Roman Town House. Over time a museum arose to encompass the remains and preserve what is now known to be one of the UK’s only remaining in situ Roman pavement mosaics and a Scheduled Ancient Monument. Canterbury Roman Museum is Kent’s only Roman Museum; providing a fascinating and family-friendly insight into life in Roman Britain. Visitors can explore Canterbury’s history, wander through the marketplace and discover hidden treasures as they step back, and down, to the streets of Roman Canterbury…
Useful Information: Baby buggy parking, Activities for young children, Stairs / lift, Activities for older children
Level 5 Contributor
85 reviews
40 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 58 helpful votes
“OK but nothing special”
Reviewed 8 August 2014

The museum is small but well presented, but there are much better Roman exhibits you can go to, especially as you have to pay to vist this one. The actual Roman room flooring and heating were OK but have seen better. Was fairly quiet when I went so went round the exhibits a couple of times but soon saw everything I needed to.

Visited July 2014
Thank Alan F
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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305 reviews from our community

Visitor rating
Date | Rating
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English first
Level 4 Contributor
27 reviews
4 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 12 helpful votes
“Well conceived but small”
Reviewed 2 August 2014

As it seems, bombing during the War revealed the remains of the city during roman times. However, little was found, say, intact. In spite of that, the whole place is well conceived and carefully thought, ending up in a sequence of maps, post and pieces shown along the one-way path throughout the museum. It is worth visiting after other major spots in Canterbury. Kids will also enjoy.

Visited July 2014
1 Thank Roberto P
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Devon, United Kingdom
Level 5 Contributor
72 reviews
43 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 25 helpful votes
“Absolutely brilliant museum.”
Reviewed 26 July 2014

Visited this museum a couple of days ago. Very interesting and informative with lots of original roman pieces and reenactments of roman shops and rooms. Also included original roman underfloor heating and mosaics. Good value for money. Will interest all ages.

Visited July 2014
Thank claytonbaker
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Hayling Island, United Kingdom
Level 6 Contributor
130 reviews
89 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 56 helpful votes
“A bit disappointing”
Reviewed 19 July 2014

About average for a Roman Museum - I've seen worse, but also seen much better.

I liked the parts specifically referring to Canterbury, and the Roman market stall reconstructions were amusing (don't know how authentic they are - but good fun for children) - see pics.

The excavation bit was disappointing, the (free) display in Waterstone's basement was better.

Visited July 2014
2 Thank OffshoreAlan
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Level 1 Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 4 helpful votes
“One of Canterbury's hidden gems!”
Reviewed 15 July 2014

I have lived in Canterbury for over 26 years, and have often visited this attraction, which is free to resident card holders and reasonably priced otherwise. The displays are interesting, informative and accessible, however could do with some updating (particularly the computerised graphics depicting the Roman villa layout). I never cease to be amazed at how much history is just below the surface of Canterbury, and this museum certainly sheds light on this. The staff are friendly and knowledgable, the museum itself is accessible to wheelchair users and pushchairs thanks to their lift. They also have a nice education area, where children (and adults!) can try on costumes, touch and engage with real Roman artefacts and even construct a mosaic. Not too long ago, I happened to visit at a time when some Roman reenactors were present, creating crafts and available for general questions and conversations - may I recommend that this is repeated more often and advertised more widely, as it really added an extra dimension, helping to bring the museum to life, and would appeal to tourists and locals alike.

Visited April 2014
1 Thank Rocketscientisty
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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