With the children off for the holidays, I am sometimes at a loss of how to keep them occupied. This holiday we decided that we would try and do day trips in and around the UK whilst also getting them to learn through exploring. I believe the best education can be had by exploring and visiting new places, as what is seen is never forgotten.
When I was offered press tickets to visit Ripley’s Believe It or Not! London and told the children, they were quite excited. To be honest, I was wondering if Ripley’s was something that small/young children would enjoy but after looking up the website, I figured it was fine for the entire family. This was confirmed after visiting as even my little 2 year old quite enjoyed looking around.
It was fairly easy to get to Ripley’s. We took the car and there was parking less than a 5 minute walk away, the charges for which were about £5 an hour. For the centre of London, this was pretty reasonable. It would have cost us about as much taking public transport, even from where we live.
The children were enthralled from the entrance itself which had a two headed calf figure and Ethan was thrilled with Optimus Prime – the transformer.
What you need to do is take the lift up to the topmost floor and then wind your way downwards. There are stairs between floors but there are members of staff on each floor to help, in case one needs the lift.
The topmost floor consists of Animal Oddities, Gallery of the Greats where there are artefacts from around the world. You also have the world’s smallest car there. The upside down room quite quaint and the children found it really funny.
Coming down to the 4th floor – there is an exhibition of Olympic torches and the dungeon, which we thought we would not do as we thought the children may get scared but they wanted to walk through and it is not a large area so one can move quickly through it.
From here you can lead on to the theatre which surprisingly the children were quite happy to spend some time in. It makes me want one of these of my own!! Sigh! We sat and watched a few scenes from Ripley’s Believe It or Not! television serial. I think they also got a bit of a break before we proceeded to the next area.
The third floor consists of the black hole tunnel which was loads of fun and I did get a bit dizzy but it’s a short tunnel and the children loved walking through it. There are also figures of the tallest man, heaviest man (where you can weigh yourself against him).
Moving on to the second floor – you come to the mirror maze. It’s what the children had been waiting to see and enter. I thought this was rather nice too. It is dark inside, lit up by red dim lights so that it is more interesting. We were handed out plastic gloves so we do not get the mirrors messy and I thought this was a great idea instead of having everyone leave their handprints on the mirrors. We managed to find out way out pretty soon – well, thanks to me!!
From there on we came to the Laser race and I stayed outside with Aeryn while Ethan and Jadyn went in with my husband. They took the easy level and enjoyed being spies for a short while.
Both the children enjoyed the Laser Race the most. I really liked the Mirror maze and of course there were pictures made out of toast, lipstick, pennies, keyboard keys. We touched a part of the Berlin Wall, a meteorite that was ancient, saw an eagle coffin and The Titanic made from matchsticks.
I think that it was a day out spent well. It is educational for the children besides being loads of fun.
Ripley’s is also very near Piccadilly so there is a lot to see around there and one can make a day of it visiting London. It is well worth visiting the Ripley’s Museum and can be enjoyed by all the family.
Ben Fogle has also teamed up with Ripley’s Believe It or Not! London in search for a Mini Explorer and there are special offers for tickets too. You can read all about it here.
Disclosure: I received complimentary press tickets for the family to visit Ripley’s,London. All ideas and opinions expressed in this post are entirely my own.