After a year of not being able to travel, like many of you, I am eager for international travel to open back up. While we’re waiting, it’s a great time to plan a dream vacation to Europe and no trip abroad is complete without at least a few days in London!
I lived in London for almost seven years. It’s a wonderful family destination, rich with history, culture and charm. As a former “local”, a mom, and a lover of this incredible city, I put together this list of fun things to do in London with kids to help you make the most of your family getaway in England. Cheers!
1) SCIENCE MUSEUM
The London Science Museum, located next door to the London Natural History Museum, is a great place to spend a few hours exploring with your little one. The Science Museum is open 10am-6pm daily and entry is free (although they do ask for a voluntary donation). Here you will find fun educational exhibitions for all ages!
If you have a toddler be sure to visit The Garden. The Garden is an interactive gallery inside the London Science Museum created for pre-schoolers incorporating water, light, sound, and building.
My two-year-old daughter loved the interactive water exhibit and enjoyed all the other sensory displays. There is a soft play area here for younger children as well, along with music inspired exhibits and a puppet theatre.
This is one of the most popular areas inside the Science Museum, so it is best to avoid Saturday and Sunday mornings when possible as these tend to be the busiest visiting times.
2) HYDE PARK & KENSINGTON GARDENS
With a huge wooden pirate ship in the unique playground of Kensington Gardens and another playground located in the southern part of Hyde park, children can let their imaginations run wild as they enjoy playing.
In Hyde park you can boating for £12 an hour per adult, £5 an hour per child under 15 and no charge for children under 4 years old (babies must be at least 12 months to go on boat and children under 12 must be accompanied by an adult).
3) ZSL LONDON ZOO
The ZSL London Zoo is open from 10:00am- 5:00pm everyday but Christmas and makes for a fun, adventurous day with kids. The prices of tickets change depending on the time of year but typically adult tickets are between £20-25 , children 3-15 are around £15, and children under three get in free!
To gain an even more interactive experience with the animals you can accompany your child (ages 11-15) as they have the opportunity to be a junior Zookeeper for the day. This deal is only £170 and includes 3.5 hours of behind the scenes close-up animal encounters as well as a Zookeeper shirt and hat to take home.
4) CUTTY SARK
Climb aboard the Cutty Sark and take your children to learn about this historic ship. Open daily from 10:00am- 5:00pm a visit to the Cutty Sark is only £15.00 for adults and £7.50 for children under 15 and free for any child under four.
A trip aboard this ship includes being taught to steer and experience the beautiful skyline of London. Expect to hear stories from different crew member characters that tell about the history of the ship and what life was like at sea.
You can search and see who will be performing on which day or just be surprised when you get there.
5) TOWER OF LONDON
From the Crown Jewels to the interacting with the famous ravens, your children will love the Tower of London. It opens on Tuesday- Saturday from 9:00am to 5:30pm and on Sunday- Monday from 10:00am- 5:30pm. Tickets for adults are £26 and for children 5-15 are £12.90, children under 5 get in free.
Family trails in the Tower of London include fun kid friendly quizzes and activities. These trails are free and are all available year-round.
Included with palace admission, you can also enroll your kids (aged 5-12) in Knight School and where they will train to become a knight! Activities include designing your own flag, building a catapult, learning how to balance on horseback, and much more.
6) SEA LIFE LONDON AQUARIUM
Take the kiddos to the Sea Life London Aquarium and have them experience the underwater kingdom! The aquarium usually open by 10:00am- 4:00pm, and it costs £27.93 per person. Children three or under enter for free.
This aquarium has 14 different themed zones and Europe’s largest collection of global marine life. Go and meet Ranger Andy at 12pm everyday, as he tells you all about the amazon and takes you along an adventure including feeding rainforest animals and meeting bugs.
Listen to a talk about the life of a sting ray at 11am daily or go to see the penguins dive and eat their food from 1pm-3p everyday but Wednesday. During some of the year, you’ll even be able to see penguin chicks!
7) THE BRITISH MUSEUM
The British Museum is open from 10:30am- 4:00pm (7:30pm on Fridays) and is free for all children under 16, and only £6 for adults.
You can explore this museum and discover 12 objects to see with children along with an activity backpack filled with fun items for children under five, and the tools to help make your museum visit exciting. Also included in the backpack are different hands-on activities for children over six.
8) LONDON EYE & LONDON EYE RIVER CRUISE
Take your children to see London in a new way at the London Eye and London Eye River Cruise. The London Eye opens from 11:00am to 6:00pm with tickets that are £30 for adults 16 and older, £24 for children three to 16 and free for children under three.
See London from a 360 degree view and view Big Ben and Buckingham Palace up close. Go on the London Eye River Cruise for £33 for adults 16 and older, £25 for children three to 16, and free for children under three.
You’ll see many popular landmarks on River Thames, and the kids will love the boat ride and get to view London in unique, fun way!
9) UNICO GELATO MAKING WORKSHOP
Make delicious gelato with your family at Unico Gelato Making Workshop. This unique experience is a two hour workshop that is only £40 a person and classes get filled quickly so hurry to reserve a spot in the workshop by going online to find out the select dates they hold them on.
Handcrafting gelato with your young ones is fun way to spend a couple hours in London. Unico even offers vegan options so you don’t have to worry about dietary restrictions.
10) GRANARY SQUARE
Make a splash at Granary Square with children of all ages. This free park is located in the heart of King’s Cross and truly the perfect way to cool off from a hot day in London with the kids.
With over 1,000 fountains and lovely restraints surrounding, Granary Square is the perfect spot to enjoy lunch while you watch your children have the time of their lives as they play in the water.
Visit at night to watch each individual fountain light up and put on a show for the whole family to enjoy!
WHERE TO STAY IN LONDON
There are a lot of great hotels in London but one of my favorites is The Kensington Hotel. This boutique hotel is in a great location in South Kensington, walking distance to Hyde Park, Kensington Gardens, Royal Albert Hall, The Natural History Museum, the V&A, Harrods and the Kensington Tube Station.
WHERE TO EAT IN LONDON
London has an array of excellent dining options, but with is many choices it can be hard to decide where to eat. So I put together this list of the 33 best restaurants in London. I also created a guide for the best outdoor dinning in London, and the best places to have tea in London. Enjoy!
London is spread out with so much to do and see. If you just have a few days in the city, it’s helpful to have an idea of the sites you want to see, in what order, so I put together this London itinerary with tips on how to make the most of two days in the city.
THINGS TO DO IN LONDON WITH KIDS
I hope this article has inspired you to take a family vacation to London when international travel opens back up. If you have any questions about things to do in London with kids, or London in general, please leave these in the comments below. Happy Travels!
Have you been to London? Please share your experience or questions in the comments below!
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