The National Portrait Gallery is often lost in the museum shuffle in London, mostly because it’s located behind the National Gallery, so it’s often an afterthought for tourists. And frankly, if you’re walking from Trafalgar Square to Leicester Square or Covent Garden, it’s easy to walk right past it and not know that it’s there. They aim to change that with a major renovation that will see them create a much grander entrance befitting a gallery of national importance. Unfortunately, that means that the National Portrait Gallery will be closing for three years.
Yes, that’s not a typo – three whole years.
Starting June 29th 2020, the museum will be closing while major works in service of the £35.5 million refurbishment will take place. Most of the collection will be put in storage, while famous pieces will be sent on tour around the UK to various other art museums.
So, you have just under 8 months to visit before it closes and you won’t be able to go back until 2023.