When we travel the world with our three kids, I like to research where we can go on a rainy day. Most major cities have museums set up especially for children – here’s my Listopedia Kids Museums bucket list.
This amazing hands on art museum offers activities for children aged 10 months to 15 years. Sculpt something at the Clay Bar, paint, draw or record a song in the Sound Booth. Let your (I mean, let the kids’) creativity run wild. There’s also a special area for the under 5’s to let their creativity shine.
London has plenty of great museums to take kids to, but the Natural History Museum is top of my list. Kids can see dinosaur skeletons, a life size model of a Blue Whale, or a skeleton of the extinct sabre-toothed cat.
For 1£ you can purchase an ‘Explore and Discover Guide’, suitable for ages 5-7 or ages 8-11, which encourage children to draw pictures, answer questions and explore new ideas as they visit different exhibitions. For children aged 7 or under you can borrow an Explorer Backpack free of charge – with a little activity book, a safari hat and binoculars. This is sure to inspire any kid’s imagination.
Free Entry to the main galleries is worth noting and they encourage family picnics on the front lawn! In winter the Ice Rink in the forecourt is a big hit with all ages.
This museum, designed for children aged 3-11 years, encourages the little ones to explore and learn through participation. Build, bang, climb or make believe – kids will have hours of fun here! You can’t wear shoes inside so bring socks or “house shoes” (slippers).
With 16 exhibition rooms such as the Earth Room, Perception Room and the Fluids Room, this museum offers a terrific spectrum of experiences. Kids can play a piano with their feet, experience elements of Chilean copper mining or program a robot. The museum has a great children’s playground attached to it if some outdoor time is needed.
This museum has been designed to inspire children’s imaginations and creativity through play. In fact all the exhibition names are a reflection of this concept, with rooms like ‘Nature Play’, ‘Space Play’ or ‘Story Play’. There’s also a special room designed for Toddlers up to the age of 36 months. Kids will enjoy things like the water play pond, building a play space or being asked how they would communicate with aliens in outer space!
Being the winner of the 2012 Children’s Museum Award makes Tropenmuseum Junior a ‘must visit’ for me. Especially designed for 6 – 13 year olds, the museum sets out to teach children an appreciation of cultural diversity through highly interactive exhibitions. Children can immerse themselves in a different culture through dance, music, arts, crafts, stories and other hands on experiences. Every two and half years a new exhibition is installed.