On Sunday we had a last minute family day out in London. We've taken both children to London before for a couple of days, but this was the first time we attempted it all in one day. We tried something new - instead of taking the train which is quite a trek for us, we drove and parked in Westfield Shopping Centre (Shepherds Bush). They are currently running a promotion with PayPal where you can park all day at the weekend for just £3, a definite bargain and it worked really well. The tube station is right outside and you can easily get right where you want to be.
We started in The British Museum, which we've not visited before with children.
Although Harry was interested in the exhibits that we showed him, there wasn't really a lot there for Mia. It was very busy so we couldn't really let her run about, and there wasn't anything there for them to touch or interact with. Although there is plenty there to interest young children, I think that it helps if they are at an age where they can understand a little more about what they are seeing. Harry was fascinated by the mummies, Mia was disappointed because I think she was imagining something like a baby group filled with Mummies.
So then we went on to our old favourites, The Natural History Museum and the Science Museum. We have our route around them now. In The Natural History Museum we visit the dinosaurs, the mammal hall with the blue whale, and the escalator up through the giant Earth. The Volcanoes and Earthquakes gallery has been refurbished since our last visits and had some very interesting displays. Both children enjoyed the earthquake simulator which has now reopened. Harry is still fascinated with the David Attenborough programme that was on over Christmas, and he likes finding the exhibits which featured.
In the Science Museum we started off in the Garden area in the basement where there is lots to do for little ones, then moved upstairs to Launchpad. Previously we've visited during the week, and we were surprised by how much quieter it was on a Sunday. Admittedly it was a sunny day outside, which affected the visitor numbers, but we really thought that it would be much busier.
They both enjoyed spending time here. Harry wants to be a 'scientist' when he grows up, so he kept asking to see more scientist things. We stayed here until mid-afternoon and could have stayed longer, but we were conscious that we didn't want to be too late home. Harry did brilliantly with all the walking, he's a reluctant walker but he hardly complained at all.
We stopped for dinner at Pizza Hut on the way home and then they were both straight to bed despite sleeping all the way home in the car, so they were obviously exhausted! We had a great day and managed to fit so much in, definitely a day trip that we'll be thinking about repeating soon!