The Science Museum is one of the many FREE places to visit in London that consistently sparks curiosity and ignites the flames of discovery. The Science Museum is located next to the Natural History Museum, and my plan was to visit both of them for a full London day out. However, we spent so much time in the Science museum that I decided against it. We would not have done justice to either or them
The moment you step foot into the grand atrium of the Science Museum, you’re greeted by a sense of wonder. The Science Museum isn’t just a repository of artifacts; it’s a living testament to humanity’s relentless pursuit of understanding the world around us. From the towering rockets suspended overhead to the intricate displays that tell the stories of innovation and ingenuity, every inch of the museum exudes a palpable passion for science, but the museum’s greatest triumphs for me is its ability to cater to all ages and interests. The museum is sprawled over five floors and has something for everyone. Whether you’re a curious child, a dedicated student, or a seasoned researcher, there’s something here to captivate your imagination.
Located on level 0, “exploring space” was the first gallery you encounter as you enter the museum. It tends to be quite busy as it is the first one you encounter as you enter the museum. The massive globe in the middle in mesmerising, which changes from being Earth, to Mars to the moon! You will also see a full-sized replica of Eagle—the lander that took astronauts Armstrong and Aldrin to the Moon in 1969, two real space rockets suspended from the ceiling (a British Black Arrow and a United States Scout), satellites, and spacecraft. Overhead walkways allow you to get up close to aeroplanes suspended in the air. Examine exhibits from the pioneer days of aviation, including the world’s most authentic Antoinette monoplane (1909) and the Vickers Vimy, which first crossed the Atlantic in 1919.
As a history aficionado, I was enthralled by the museum’s ability to transport me through time. The “Making the Modern World” gallery is a captivating chronicle of technological evolution, including the first Apple computer, penicillin, Watson’s DNA model and different modes of transport such as Ford T. It’s a humbling experience to stand before the actual Apollo 10 command module, knowing that it played a role in humanity’s greatest journey beyond our planet’s boundaries. From steam engines to smartphones, it traces the remarkable journey of human innovation, reminding us that progress is a tapestry woven by countless minds over generations. You know you are old when you have to show the children different telephone sets you used over the years 😀
Another remarkable and unique feature on this level of the Science Museum is “The Garden,” and “the pattern pod”. Designed as a multi-sensory exploration zone, this environment offers young children the tools to transform play into a learning adventure. They will be captivated by their own shadows, or create digital water ripples or make their own music.
Moving on, we ascended to the first floor and explored the Technicians gallery, which particularly piqued Ay’s interest owing to its interactive elements. We tried to generate visual effects on a film set, examine blood samples in a laboratory, create lifesaving medicine as an NHS pharmacy technician, weld metals on a touch screen rollercoaster track and create CAD drawings. These interactive features stood out as some of our favorite aspects within the gallery. Its fascinating stuff really.
There are 3000 objects over an area equivalent to 1,500 hospital beds in the Medicine gallery. We absolutely loved the endoscope simulator. You could pass a time down a mannequin’s throat into the oesophagus and see how it would look like on the screen. Ay was captivated by the stomach acid and the oesophageal muscles. Amazing! There is a giant sized human here too, and the film explaining how it was made mesmerised us. Another activity that attracted Ay was the interactive “halting the spread of an infectious disease” Unfortunately, the touch screen interface seemed to be stuck and not working properly. It was disappointing as this was a recurring observation throughout the Science Museum experience.
The Mathematics gallery was located on level 2, and is designed by Zaha Hadid Architects. It examines the fundamental role of mathematicians, their tools and ideas have played in building the world we live in. There was not much to interact with here and can be missed.
There’s plenty of FREE stuff to do in the Science museum, but certain exhibitions and attractions are chargeable. One of which is “Wonderlab: The Equinor Gallery.” , which is located on the top floor and was undoubtedly the highlight of our visit (Day passes from £9.00). With a range of interactive exhibits spanning everything from chemistry to physics, we found ourselves gleefully engaged in experiments, mesmerized by the colorful concoctions, and enchanted by the spectacle of live science demonstrations that unfolded before our eyes. Ever heard of liquids that can be solid and liquid at the same time? Brace yourself, because you’ll see it right before your eyes. And the electricity show? It’s like watching wizards conjure lightning bolts that dance right in front of you. See the mist move and swirl in interesting shapes, like clouds in the sky, when you touch or blow the mist. The Friction Slides also stand out as a crowd favorite. The exhilarating experience of gliding down slides composed of various materials provides an entertaining avenue to investigate and understand the concepts of friction across different surfaces and materials.
Additionally, you can enjoy a variety of science based, immersive 3D films at the IMAX cinema. Usually 60 minute films – £12 per adult, £10 per child. You can also go on the Red Arrows 3D simulator – £6 per person.
You can immerse yourself in our hands-on gaming experience, featuring the very best video games and consoles from the past 50 years – Day passes from £10
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Whether you’re into rockets, robots, or really wacky experiments, the Science museum in London has it all. It is like a playground for your brain, where every corner is a surprise waiting to be discovered. I just say some galleries were a bit more hands on than others and a few of the touch screen exhibits were not working, however, there is a lot to keep little ones as well as adults busy. You will have an epic day of learning, laughing, and having the time of your life!
Address: Exhibition Road, South Kensington, London, SW7 2DD
FREE entry- some activities are chargeable. Please check website for more details. Pre-book a free ticket.
Different activities continue throughout the season. Please see website for more details
No Parking except for small number of disabled parking spaces on Exhibition Road. The nearest tube station is South Kensington. This is on the District, Circle and Piccadilly lines and is a 5-minute walk from the museum. Gloucester Road tube station is also on the District, Circle and Piccadilly lines and is a 15-minute walk from the museum.
Toilets and Baby changing facilities on site.
Refreshments available on site, Full details about food and drink HERE
You can bring a picnic to enjoy
Buggy accessible. Buggies are allowed in the museum and galleries. However, in certain areas, you may be asked to leave your pram in a buggy park as it will be too bulky to be allowed into the area or exhibit. Buggy parking is available free of charge in the Spare Room or you can use the coin-return pushchair locks that require a £1 coin.
Read more about access and facilities at the Museum
Only assistance dogs allowed