Thursday, 3 January 2013

A Grand Day Out!

This New Years Day, we decided to hit the big smoke. With little one on the way, and my ever-increasing bump size, we knew it was probably our last chance to "do" London for a while...

I love our city. It is big, and noisy, and manic; but its buzzing and lively and there's so much to do, see and explore! It was the first time, really, that we've taken Ava since she's been a bit more clued up...

So, the big question... what to do with a one-year-old?

Easy.

Can't beat the Science Museum.

One of the things I love about London is how child friendly it is. Of all the other capitals I've been to, I've yet to find another city that caters so well for little ones. Most of London's museums are free, and they pretty much all have interactive areas which are totally kid-friendly. However, I think of all the London Museums, the Science Museum really has it sussed when it comes to 0-5s and I have to admit I went with pretty high expectations. I was not disappointed.

Of course, when you're with a one year old, even the journey up on the train is just about the most exciting thing EVER. In typical Ava style, she was Miss Independent, wanting to hold on to the bar in the centre of the carriage and not sit on a seat or hold anyone's hand. I think we're going to have fun with this one...
Travelling up on the train with Nanny and Grandpa... lots to see!
After a quick lunch, we headed straight to the Science Museum to get maximum fun before Ava got too tired (nap is normally at 1, so we were taking a real chance!) Of course, there's so much to do and see that a nap was the last thing on this one's mind! After the "bubble show" where we got to see and burst lots of different sizes and shapes of bubbles, and learn how they were made, we headed to what I think is the highlight of the Science Museum for small children - The Garden. It is pure exploration, sensory fun!
After the "Bubble Show" we headed to "The Garden" where we got to feel all sorts of weird and wonderful objects...
...play with water (which is always a roaring success with Miss Ava - they even provided waterproof overalls!)...

.and go into this cool space pod thing that was full of cuddly toys!
 After about an hour in The Garden, we headed up to the Pattern Pod which also had lots of interactive activities for Ava to have a go at...

Following the animal footprints with her special sensory shoes...
Making splashes in the simulated "pond" and trying to catch the little Nemo's that kept swimming round her feet!
Once we had visited the Pattern pod, it was about 3.30pm and Little Miss was rubbing her eyes like crazy and was clearly absolutely shattered, so we headed for a walk across Kensington Gardens where a little someone fell asleep within 5 minutes! It was lovely for us adults (My parents, Dave and I) to be able to appreciate some of London's green areas too... Kensington Gardens is pretty special, and the Princess Diana Memorial Playground is out of this world, kid-friendly amazing! Sadly for Ava, she slept through the whole thing!!

The train journey home was made even more exciting (if you can possible imagine that) by the addition of a Costa "babychino"... check out the 'tash! 


Our day out in London was a roaring success. We came home with a tired but happy little girl (and an absolutely shattered Mama - what is it about London that totally takes it out of you?!) But I'm so glad we did it. It might be the last chance in a little while...

Anyone else got any recommendations for London 0-5 activities? Do share!

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