Our family tour dedicated to London Museums for kids continues with the most popular tourist attraction in London for locals. After visiting the Science Museum, last week we went to visit the Natural History Museum.
It was a beautiful crispy sunny day, I can say it was one of those perfect Autumn days. Family team in a new light traveler version: we tried to leave the double buggy at home, trusting that Andrea could be so involved in the museum to accept to walk or stay on the board. It was a quite good choice as moving by tube is not easy with our double stroller, Leonardo loves staying in his carrier so when Andrea needed to sleep, I worn my Baby Bjorn carrier.
Immediately outside the South Kensington tube station, the Museum presents himself in an astonishing building, with a beautiful Romanesque terracotta facade, that during Christmas time (from 27 October to 8 January 2017) host a lovely ice rink in the square in front of it.
This has to be a “must do” on any list of London attractions, certainly a perfect refuge from any bad weather. The natural history museum embodies all the best aspects of the Victorian philanthropic spirit…it both educates and amazes and the building is as noteworthy as its contents.
It’s curious to know that the museum opened more than two hundred years ago thanks to the offer of Sir Hans Sloane, a passionate traveler collecting natural history specimens.
There wasn’t a queue at the main entrance on Cromwell Road, in case you found it, there is the side entrance on Exhibition Road that has usually a shorter queue (a friend gave me this tip).
Museum welcomes us with his famous Diplodocus skeleton, known affectionately as Dippy. You should come to visit it soon, as it will be replaced by a whale skeleton by the summer 2017.
We started the visit from the Blue Zone, where giants Dinosaur skelethons and a earthquake simulator greet us. I have to say, I was impressed more than Andrea, their dimensions can leave you with open mouth, I got that creepy tingle down my spine when standing in front of them.
The visit then continues with massive mammals and the blue whale model.
We were surprised to see not only dinosaurs (who are really impressive), but also learned a lot about earthquakes, mountains, rocks, how earth become Earth. My son loved interactive activities (spinning, shaking, pushing, etc).
We didn’t visit the Human Biology zone, it was time for all to eat so we reach the coffee area inside the Museum. We found a good corner where I could breastfeed Leonardo. There is a Menu kids consists of a cheese sandwich (quite hard), apple and a muffin (for 5 £).
There were a lot of school groups visiting the Museum, as happened at the Science Museum this is common for schools in the UK and I think this is a great opportunity for children. I cannot even remember when at school we were brought to visit a Museum… This museum has in the basement a specific picnic area for big groups, it’s really amazing the attention that this country gives to new generations.
At the end we did a quick visit to the Darwin section and then we left the Museum. Outside we went a bit around to see the twinkling Christmas lights and then we went back home, fully immersed in a Christmas feeling.
The Museum’s spaces can be hired as a sublime backdrop for a romantic wedding or memorable private party at any time of year.
More information here.
Direction: Cromwell Road, London, SW7 5BD – South Kensington tube station
Opening times: daily 10.00 – 17.50. Last entry 17.30
tel: +44 20 7938 9123
Closed 24-26 December
27 October to 8 January 2017
Opening times vary – Core hours 11.00-21.00
Closed 25 December