Planning a family day out can be difficult; juggling between making it fun, educational and not too costly, you’re stress levels are bound to rise. Add into that the temperamental British weather; it’s enough to make you give up. But here’s a few ideas for a great rainy day out that everyone can enjoy.
The Natural History Museum
What can be more awe-inspiring than the Natural History Museum? Get up close and personal with an animatronic T-Rex in the Blue Zone’s world renowned dinosaur exhibit. Test your memory, listen inside a womb and learn how human skeletons inspire man-made structures.
If ecology is more your thing, head to the Green Zone. ‘Treasures’ is home to everything from Wallace’s insects to Guy the Gorilla. Here you’ll learn to be eco-friendly and discover how fossils are formed. What happens when volcanoes erupt? Find out in the Red Zone and take the escalator through the giant Earth sculpture.
Take a trip to Orange Zone and the Darwin Centre. The Cocoon gives you fantastic views from the 7th floor down, with translucent tables filled with plant and animal specimens. Discover how to decode DNA and plan an expedition.
Whatever your age and interests, the Natural History Museum is for you. And with free entry, no one’s complaining!
The Royal Observatory and Planetarium
Ever wondered what dark matter is, or how stars are formed? Have all your questions and more answered by experts in the Astronomy Centre. Interactive table-top galleries and HD projection technology take you across the universe with real life images.
Get hands on and straddle the Meridian line, behold the largest UK refracting telescope that neatly falls in the Best Telescopes Under $200 category, or touch a 4.5 billion year old meteorite. Do you have what it takes to guide a space mission? Find out. Explore space and time at London’s only planetarium.
If you need a sit down, how about one of the shows? Try Space Safari with Ted the Bear for the littlest ones or Undiscovered Worlds for all the family – you’re sure not to be disappointed. And with family offers around £20, you can afford to go to infinity and beyond!
The Science Museum
Whoever said science was boring? From steam engines to obese mice and the brain of Babbage, there is something to interest everyone. Have a go in the Flight exhibit’s Typhoon Jet simulator, or see how you’ll age in ‘Who am I?’
Making the Modern World’s chronological sequence of one hundred and fifty iconic objects will make you appreciate your computer much more. If space is more your thing, you’ll love the full-sized replica of Aldrin and Armstrong’s ‘Eagle’ in ‘Exploring Space’, plus learn everything about space life – from breathing to using the loo.
For the younger scientists, The Garden and Pattern Pod are brilliant interactive, sensory environments. With free entry, hundreds of exhibits and various cafés, there’s no reason to leave all day.
British Music Experience
Located at the O2 Arena, the BME is a guide to British music over the past sixty years. View memorabilia like Geri Halliwell’s union jack dress and John Lennon’s glasses or play instruments in the Interactive studio, with video tutorials from the likes of Blur and the Magic Numbers.
Get your groove on in the Dance the Decades booth; learn everything from the Twist to Vogue and become the star of your own music video!
More interested in the technical side? Transmission explores broadcasting from 1940s to today’s digital age, while Playback enlightens you on sound storage technology. A full sensory experience of iconic performances will blow your socks off in The Finale.
And the best part? Smart ticket allows you to scan and record your day to view again and again. Music brings everyone together, and at £13 (Adult) you’ll not regret this visit.
Sea Life London Aquarium
Go on an underwater adventure at the aquarium! With 500 species to see, you’ll never get bored. But there’s more to do than just look. Feeding time with the rays, piranhas and sharks takes place daily.
Or maybe you’re a penguin lover? Then swim on down to the brand new Antarctica exhibit. Thrill seeker? Try the shark reef tunnel, or even go snorkelling with them.
Opt for a behind the scenes tour and you’ll get to learn more about the rescue and conservations projects taking place. And for the Disney lovers, visit the Nemo pools to say hi to Dory. Fun for all the family, you’ll be bobbing along the aquarium all day!
So when the weather is bad, don’t panic. You’ll always find something fun to do – it may be the best family day out you’ve ever had!
Have any other rainy day suggestions? Leave a comment below!
Becca Donaldson is a theatre enthusiast and prolific blogger. She loves musicals and with so much travelling to the West End, the British Hotel Reservation Centre is a godsend.