As one of the busiest and most popular cities in the world, London is no stranger to children’s activities, but with so much to choose from, it can be a daunting process picking and choosing the right activities for a day out with your young family in the big smoke. This is particularly true if you’re strapped for cash and perhaps only have a few days out a year in the budget. In that situation, you’re going to want to make every day count. That’s where our guide comes in.
The London Eye
Slowly, but surely, the London Eye is becoming a truly iconic piece of the London skyline and the views it provides are just as stunning as the imposing wheel itself. Perhaps for younger children, it might prove a little much, but it’s ideal for ages 6 and up.
Harry Potter Studios
Just outside of London in Watford, you’ll find the now world-famous Warner Brothers Studio Tour. Housed on the same site used to film many of the Harry Potter films, the studio has now been transformed into a top-tier family attraction themed around the boy wizard. Using actual sets and props from the films, it’s a truly magical day-out that won’t soon be forgotten.
The great thing about the toy stores in London is that they are practically playgrounds in their own right (free ones at that). From the toy department of Harrods to the M&M and Lego stores, you could potentially spend hours simply looking around. The real draw, however, is Hamleys – the largest and oldest toy store in the world. You could potentially spend an entire day there, but the kids will probably want to leave with a souvenir.
Many of the museums in London are free entry and include a number of exhibits and attractions that will delight kids of all ages. They can experience an earthquake and meet a T-Rex at the Natural History Museum, experience Victorian London at the Museum of London and even experience childhood toys from across time at the V&A Museum of Childhood. And that’s just the tip of the iceberg!
The London Dungeon
For slightly older kids, this is a gruesome treat that shouldn’t be passed up. Combining genuine historical knowledge with gory stories and some seriously (and wonderfully) cheesy role-playing, the London Dungeon will delight any kids who are fans of their Horrible Histories.
Whilst London isn’t exactly renowned for its greenery, there are a surprising amount of parks hidden within its depths. Many of these parks are designed specifically to be enjoyed by children too. The Diana Princess of Wales Memorial Playground in Kensington Gardens, for example, includes a giant climbable pirate ship, whilst Crystal Palace Park features a maze and some life-size dinosaurs!
Train tickets can be expensive at the best of times if you book on the same day. However, if you book in advance and choose off peak train tickets then you could save yourself a small fortune. Once you’re in the city itself, meanwhile, the tube is easier and cheaper to use than ever before now that it accepts most contactless payment methods.
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