London Review: The Doctor Who Experience

If you’re heading to London, one of the things any Whovian should do is to visit the Doctor Who Experience. That’s exactly what I did.

During my recent trip to London, I met up with Nancy Holder and her family and we headed off for some Whovian fun. The Experience comes in three parts.

The first section is a live-action exhibit that walks you through an exciting, interactive adventure with  Doctor Who played by Matt Smith as he communicates to your tour group through video screens while you make your way through the exhibit. Along the way, you’re going to see a variety of sets and experience some very cool live-action moments. I really can’t say more than this. *Spoilers* don’cha know. Plus you’ll even get to see a life-sized TARDIS console. Amazing!

Here is a photo from the Doctor Who Experience’s website that shows the console, the Doctor on the screen, and the crowd in the room.

Each person is given a pair of 3D glasses, allowing you to see a host of awesome 3D monsters and spaceships from the show. Eventually, you figure your way out of the experience and enter the next section of the exhibit.

The second part of the Experience is a Doctor Who museum. While the live-action section of the Experience was fun, the museum was by far my favorite part of the exhibit.

With a host of tools and objects from the show, you get the unique opportunity to get up close and personal with three different TARDIS consoles: one from Tom Baker’s Doctor,

another from David Tennant’s Doctor,

as well as the console from Matt Smith’s Doctor–featured in The Doctor’s Wife written by Neil Gaiman.

All of these things were so much fun to see in person. In addition, there were costumes from all of the Doctors,

the Assistants,

Captain Jack Harkness,

and K-9. Plus, there are some gorgeous Time Lord costumes that have to be seen in person.

You’ll also see life-sized Daleks as well as Cybermen, including a series of Cybermen heads from various models throughout the life of the series. Sadly, my photos of the Cyberheads didn’t come out well. Also, the iPhone may take some great photos, but sometimes they just don’t come out with enough light. However, the Dalek photos were great!

And don’t forget the Silence. Seriously, these monsters are quite frankly even creepier in person than they are in this photo or on the television.

There is also a life sized model of the TARDIS that deserves a few minutes of time just to look at because it is that cool. Here’s a photo of me and the lovely Nancy Holder as we stand cast in BLUE TARDIS light with a life size wax figure of Matt Smith in the background. I should mention that Matt’s hair isn’t done justice with this wax-man.

There are so many amazing things to see, along with the information cards for each item, that hardcore Whovians can easily spend an hour wandering through the area.

The last section of the Experience is the gift shop, which includes a jaw-dropping display of Doctor Who goodies. Everything you can possibly imagine is there from Lego sets to coffee cups to lunch boxes, books, videos, and more. It’s an easy place to drop some well-spent cash that will give you fun souvenirs to take home.

All in all, the Doctor Who Experience is well worth the time and money. A definite “must do” for any Whovian heading to London. Highly recommended.

About Erin Underwood

BIO: Erin Underwood is the senior event content producer for MIT Technology Review’s emerging technology events. On the side, she reads, writes, and edits SF.
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7 Responses to London Review: The Doctor Who Experience

  1. Meghan says:

    Looks awesome! I’m glad you and Nancy (and other persons present, of course) had fun. Love the pictures! ::jealous::

    Oh dear, it’s in my head again…the sound of drums, four of them, like a time lord’s heartbeat…lol. I do like Matt Smith, and I love the characters Amy and Rory, but David Tennant is still my favorite.

  2. That’s an absolute riot. Great fun. Thanks for sharing the pixs!

  3. Charles Frederick says:

    Erin, Could you please email me at
    I am involved in a search for for a decendent of Letitia M Underwood.
    Also fascinating site, link forwarded to my daughter, recent Englisg grad, Pomona.
    Charles Frederick , NYC

  4. A couple of years back, the museum part was hosted up in Lands End, England, pre-Matt Smith and yessssss, the awesomeness was Epic! The exhibit was housed in a giant TARDIS and I think my little geek heart imploded the moment I heard that familiar whoosh-whoosh that we all know and love.


  5. SViguie says:

    Hi Erin, this is Scott, Debbie’s husband. Great article. I hope to see the experience this year when we go to Europe

    • Hi Scott! You are going to LOVE it! The only thing that was annoying is that I got confused about which train to take to get there. So make sure you take the stop to Olympia or take a cab.

      It was seriously one of the TOP highlights of the trip. I would be in absolute HEAVEN if I ever got to interview one of the Doctor Who people. 🙂

  6. SViguie says:

    Thanks for the info. I got to meet Sylvester McCoy and Sophie Aldred. In fact I got to interview Sophie. She played the 7th Doctor’s companion. It was a wonderful experience.

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