20 Great ideas for families in London this Winter
As the winter draws nearer, you may be dreading the thought of how you are going to keep the kids entertained on rainy and cold days. Most kids will resist playing out if the weather is cold and if you don’t want to see them glued to the X-box continuously you’re probably looking for family days out in London.
Here are 20 top activities you can do in London this winter:
- If you have children 12 and under, there are plenty of indoor play centres available for fun, safe and dry play. Kidspace offer soft play, climbing frames and other adventure playground activities that stimulate your child’s imagination while keeping them physically active.
- If you’ve got a Frozen fan in your household you could consider ice skating. It’s often indoors, it’s fun and it’s something the whole family can enjoy. Alexandra Palace Ice Rink offer general ice skating sessions at various times, seven days a week and if it’s a last minute decision, you can book your tickets online only 15 minutes before your chosen session.
- Do your kids love nature? To explore the natural world indoors you could take them to visit the London Sea Life Aquarium to see thousands of sea creatures including the sea dragon and 500 different species of aquatic life from around the world. They can also see 40 sharks of 12 breeds and observe public feeding displays and diving demonstrations. For a splashing day out you can buy a child’s ticket online for less than £15 and if your tot is under three, there’s no charge for them.
- If your child is more of an astronaut than a marine biologist, a trip to the Science Museum is a good choice. It features Exploring Space Galleries with full scale models of the Huygens Titan probe and the Beagle 2 Mars Lander. There is also a three meter high spacelab 2 X-ray telescope that was used on real space missions!
- Everyone knows how much boys love wheels and if you’ve got a boy or even girl who is crazy about cars and buses, the London Transport Museum provides a look at the London transport system over the past 200 years. Its exhibits include horse drawn buses, motor buses from 1900 onwards and underground steam trains. The museum also hosts craft workshops and there is a 1930’s themed café bar. Best of all, children go FREE with a full paying adult.
- For families days out in London that don’t cost a fortune, you and your family can visit The Natural History Museum free of charge. Some temporary exhibits incur a cost but there are plenty of things to see without opening your wallet. The museum has a collection of preserved animals and birds, dinosaur skeletons and fossils.
- The Victoria and Albert Museum is another museum that is entirely free to visit. Celebrating art and design, it features interactive displays in which children can dress up, try on some armour or have a go at brass rubbing. It also has a family trial so that you can all explore the museum through puzzles and clues.
- Encourage your children’s love of reading by visiting The British Library. It has reading rooms, exploration games, drawing activities and special workshops for kids during the school holidays – all free.
- Fancy taking your children out to eat? Instead of eating in a plain restaurant or burger bar, why not visit The Rainforest Café, London’s best family friendly catering venue. Stunningly decorated, it features jungle décor, realistic moving models of wild animals, waterfalls and sound effects of thunder and lightning, guaranteed to keep the kids entertained.
- The Museum of London Docklands has a free children’s gallery where kids can learn about London’s port and its people. They can have a go at cargo loading, explore the Victorian docks or dig for treasure.
- If your child is a fan of film, you can treat the whole family to regular trips to Odeon cinema, where children and parents can purchase tickets for only £2.50. Available at weekends and during school holidays.
- Cineworld Cinemas discounted weekly screenings of children’s films for £1.75 per ticket. They also show 3D films for £3.25.
- To enjoy nature in a tropical hot house, you and your family could visit the butterfly paradiseat London Zoo. It has been designed to resemble a giant caterpillar and is a walk-through haven, heated to 27 degrees for the hundreds of species of butterfly that live there. This makes it an ideal place to visit during the cooler months.
- Got a water baby? The YMCA club is central London’s largest gym and offers coached gymnastics, football and swimming for kids aged six months to 12 years and a supervised gym for teenagers. There are also facilities for adults.
- To see music, dance, art and performances and take part in free activities, visit the Southbank Centre. It also has restaurants, cafes and shops.
- The Bank of England Museum has been issuing bank notes for 300 years and has a collection of antique money and even documents regarding the Titanic. They have exhibitions and educational events and things to do for families in London and beyond. Admission and events are free.
- For slightly warmer days you could combine exercise with history by visiting Postman’s Park.The park features 54 memorial tablets dedicated to individuals who died trying to save others – mostly from the Victorian era.
- For a delicious day out, you could take the kids to Melt, a Notting Hill chocolatiers where you can all have a mug of hot chocolate. They also run a children’s lollipop making course.
- Baby loves disco is a dance party for tots aged 0-6 years, featuring hits from the 70’s until now at a baby friendly volume. They also have a chill out zone with play tents and toys.
- Does your child want a pet but you don’t have space? Then visit Lady Dinah’s Cat Emporium, a place where they can enjoy tea and cake in the company of cats!