Discover incredible collections in our Museums & Galleries!

A visit to one of Colchester's fantastic galleries or museums is a great way to start exploring the city, whether you discover the distant past in Colchester Castle Museum or prefer cutting-edge contemporary art in Firstsite you'll find something for all tastes in the city centre, with no less than five significant museums and galleries within two minutes walk of each other.

Further afield in Colchester's historic coast and countryside, you'll discover many smaller museums - from the Mersea Island Museum, exploring the island's heritage, to the Nottage Museum in Wivenhoe, the Tiptree Jam Museum at Wilkins & Sons' factory and even the tiny Boxted Airfield Museum that only opens a few days a year.

City Centre Museums & Galleries

Colchester Castle is the largest Norman Keep in Europe. Constructed on the foundations of the Temple of Claudius, built when Colchester was the first Roman capital of Britain, the Castle Museum today reveals many fascinating layers of history to visitors. Archaeological collections of international…

Firstsite is Colchester and the East of England's contemporary visual arts gallery. Housed in a spectacular golden building designed by Rafael Vinoly Architects, Firstsite is both a gallery and community hub - showcasing a wide variety of impressive artworks from internationally recognised…

Hollytrees Museum is located in the beautiful grounds of Castle Park. This attractive Georgian town house, dating from 1718 houses the city's social history museum, showcasing three centuries of fascinating toys, costume, clocks and decorative arts. Discover what family life was like for the…

Find out more about local wildlife habitats, biodiversity and climate change at this much-loved, family-friendly museum, housed in the former All Saints Church. Get up close to nature and explore the Natural History collections focussing on Britain and north-east Essex…

Colchester's oldest Art Gallery. A listed Georgian building, The Minories is of local importance within the historic city of Colchester. The Victor Batte-Lay Foundation, over the years assisted by the ‘Friends of The Minories’ support group, have ensured the building be used to…

The site of the Roman circus was identified in 2004 and represents the only known Roman circus in Britain. It was a monumental structure and it may have seated up to 8,000 spectators: it would have been used as a venue for spectator sports, including chariot-racing. It was built in the early 2nd…

Museums to Explore Further Afield

Firstsite

Firstsite is Colchester and the East of England's contemporary visual arts gallery. Housed in a…