As the weather brightens up this spring, families visiting London will be looking for places where unruly kids can’t disturb or do any damage. You’d think that in a city of busy streets and crowded museums this would be hard to come by but seeing as London is so large, there are plenty of spaces children can expend their energy and keep entertained. Whether it be an absorbing art gallery, an interactive museum or a wide spaced park, there’s plenty to do with children of all ages when it comes to tearing those terrifying toddlers from the tourist stretches.
The Horniman Museum
Founded in 1901 by Frederick Horniman, a tea salesman, the Horniman museum was initially a place to display the founders collected musical instruments from around the world, sustained by the money made from his business. Now the museum has expanded ever further and with new extensions opening up into the 21st century there are countless different exhibitions and displays to see. On top of this, kids will love the acres upon acres of gardens in the surrounding area whilst the museum holds many interesting artefacts including totem poles, neoclassical mosaics as well as skeletons and preserved animals. Located near Forest Hill Overground station, this museum is perfect for families.
Deen City Farm
One of London’s many urban city farms, Deen City Farm is a farm which focuses heavily on teaching visitors about how to responsibly look after the natural world, making sure they know where their food comes from. This is great for kids, leading to them having a wider understanding of what they eat, helping them to make informed choices as they grow up. As a registered charity, the Deen City Farm even has a very cheap Riding School offering horse riding lessons whilst the educational school visits allow children to meet sheeps, pigs and cows, finding out where exactly their food comes from. The Farm is open to the general public and even has its own café and gift shop.
Victoria and Albert Museum of Childhood
Based in Bethnal Green, the V & A Museum of Childhood has a focus on products and designs for children and by children. This means that children and adults alike can enjoy the exhibits on the history of toys and childrens clothes whilst the interactive displays are sure to keep the younger children occupied. Located in Bethnal Green, the unique building was built using left over resources from the Victoria and Albert Museum in South Kensington as well as parts from the Albertopolis, or the Royal Albert Hall, making it a unique building both in architecture and interior design.
Chiswick House Gardens
This beautiful villa has a stunning 65 acres of park surrounding it and was built and designed by Lord Burlington and completed in 1729 by architect William Kent. Being one of the Grand Luxury Experiences of London, the house has much history to it and the surrounding area has many old trees and parkland for children to enjoy. As an early example of a landscape garden, the surrounding area and the villa were inspired by Ancient Rome and the structure and form of Grecian gardens. The garden incorporates faux Egyptian objects, bowling greens, water features, bridges and statues, making it unique and progressive for its time as many of these elements had not been incorporated into English Gardens before this time.
A world away from the Luxury Hotels in London, the London Wetlands centre is made of 29 hectares of stunning countryside and conservation areas, giving children and adults a great place to catch wildlife like the Eurasian sparrowhawk, sand martin, common kingfisher and little grebe. Taking any nature loving children here would be a dream come true, just remember to pack your wellies!