Although Dickens moved around a lot, his last remaining London home, which he rented for £80 a year when he was 30, is now his testament. A museum since 1925, and restored to a period look in 2012 (when the attic and kitchen were opened for the first time), these four floors don’t exude many Dickensian vibes; after all, he departed in 1839 after staying less than 2 years. It could be anyone’s humble home. Still, his celebrity got a kick-start while he lived here: Oliver Twist and Nicholas Nickleby, arguably his biggest hits, were written while he was in residence. As you inspect his desk, his razor, and bars from a prison where his spendthrift dad was locked up, an unpleasant realization sets in: Charles Dickens was a brilliant storyteller, one of the most gifted in the history of the English language, but also a jerk. Tough on his kids and unfaithfully cruel to his wife, his other great talent seems to have been for ego.
The Charles Dickens Museum
48 Doughty St., WC1
Our Rating Hours Tues–Sun 10am–5pm; last admission 1 hr. before closing Transportation Tube: Chancery Lane or Russell Square Phone 020/7405-2127 Prices £9.50 adults, £7.50 seniors and students, £4.50 children 6–16 Web site The Charles Dickens Museum
Map48 Doughty St., WC1 London
Note: This information was accurate when it was published, but can change without notice. Please be sure to confirm all rates and details directly with the companies in question before planning your trip.