Scoot London this half term POSTED ON 10/02/2016
SEVEN IDEAS FOR SEVEN GREAT DAYS OUT WITH THE KIDS IN LONDON THIS HALF TERM FROM OUR FRIENDS AT LITTLEBIRD.CO.UK
Planning a day out in London this half term and in need of some inspiration on things to do with the kids? We certainly are, so we’ve enlisted the help of our friends over at LittleBird.co.uk who have plenty of ideas, tons of savings, cool places to scoot plus some top tips too.
LittleBird.co.uk offer families great ideas and savings on the best things to do, see, eat and buy so grab a cuppa, your diary and your phone (make a day of it and invite your friends) and enjoy the read.
Everyone has to admit that the Southbank riverside walk is the best in London and always offers a great day out for families of all ages, so why not let the kids go for a scoot while you enjoy the awesome walk? It’s a fantastic place to explore on foot and on the scooter too. The riverside walkway runs from Lambeth to Blackfriars Bridge so whether you’re heading to the Southbank for a family show or exhibition or simply to take in the sights and sounds of the Riverside, enjoy street theatre, food stalls and art.
With some of the best attractions the capital has to offer you can enjoy free entry at Tate Modern – check out their family focused activities, head to the dizzy heights of The Shard (where kids go free this half term) or discover all about Shakespeare at Shakespeare’s Globe and save 33% on tickets this half term.They have a brand new children’s audio along with stage fighting and Elizabethan dressing so on this the 400th Anniversary of Shakespeare’s Death Day learn everything there is to know about the Bard. There’s classic films to be enjoyed at the BFI and the must see Imagine Festival and Roald Dahl interactive exhibition at the Southbank Centre.
FAMILY FRIENDLY EATS: Wahaca on the Southbank is built from 8 recycled shipping containers arranged on 2 overhanging levels on London’s Southbank, serving Wahaca’s award winning Mexican street food. They also have an awesome kids menu that offers smaller portions and toned down spices and is only £5.25 for a main plus a drink, to add desert, add £1.20 more.
TOP TIP: Why not pop in to the BFI and enjoy a film? It’s currently the Decade of Disney over there and they’re exploring the best bits to come out of the Magic Kingdom in the last 10 years. Enjoy free babyccinos for your little ones with a £2 coffee at the Riverfront Bar & Kitchen – just show your family cinema ticket to redeem offer. Plus Kids Eat Free at Riverfront Bar & Kitchen – one free kid’s meal with every adult’s meal.
On the banks of the Regent’s Grand Canal sits Granary Square at the historic heart of King’s Cross. The square is animated with over 1,000 choreographed fountains – each individually controlled and lit! While the kids scoot around and enjoy its wide open spaces you can check out the historic buildings that give the space atmosphere and character.
There’s always activity there, and if the weather is fine, then kids will love to play by dodging the fountains or having a go in the Kings Cross Pond Club The natural swimming pond in the middle of the King’s Cross development, and that’s just the outside! If it gets too cold then pop into the House of Illustration and their Comix Creatrix exhibition exploring the world of comics through original artwork by 100 women comic creators working across genres and generations. Just in time for Wonder Woman’s appearance in Batman Vs Superman next month. There’s also the amazing new installation Crossing Time by artist Paddy Molloy coming to the square for half term. For 27 days, starting on Saturday 13 February, the installation will come to life as the sun goes down on Granary Square. The multi-layered structure is transformed by a dramatic play of images and icons, inspired by the history and imagery of King’s Cross. Motion-activated sensors trigger changes in the sequence of images as people pass by, making each interaction unique.
FAMILY FRIENDLY EATS: Caravan Kings Cross does great pizzas and with the fountains outside the location it’s perfect, or there’s Honest Burger who offer kids sized burgers and great Gluten Free options. If you prefer a bit of spice, try the delicious Bombay cafe style Dishoom, yummy food to share as well as offering a children’s menu.
TOP TIP: A short walk from Granary Square, fall down the rabbit hole into the British Library’s Alice in Wonderland exhibition – it’s free. They also have a fab Pop-up Alice Shop well worth a wander around. While you’re here, take the kids to see the Magna Carta, Shakespeare first edition of plays published in 1623 and Dickens handwritten draft of Nicholas Nickleby, penned around July 1838. If they’re into music, they can also see original manuscripts handwritten by some of the world’s greatest musical talents. There’s a family trail too – Download a PDF copy or collect from the Box Office in the main entrance.
St James’s Park is the oldest Royal Park in London and is at the centre of three royal palaces. Buckingham Palace, St James’s Palace, and Westminster Palace so take a scoot through all that history while enjoying the greenery that surrounds you. It’s also just a stone’s throw from Trafalgar Square so just pop a wheelie down the Mall and go discover all the beauty that the National Gallery and the National Portrait Gallery have to offer. Have a gander at Hans Haake’s Gift Horse on the Fourth Plinth and even better there’s the new clockwork lion flanking Nelson’s column warning about the threat of extinction facing big cats. After you’ve soaked up all the culture
there is to offer at the galleries continue on to Ripleys at Piccadilly Circus where you can get Fast Track tickets to all the Wonders Of Ripley’s including the new exhibits “Hard Rock Couture! Experience all the mindboggling sites they have to offer.
FAMILY FRIENDLY EATS: Garfunkle’s is located just off Trafalgar square just seconds away from Nelson’s Column. Relax in a spacious window booth and watch the hustle and bustle of one of London’s most famous squares go by. They have a delicious set Children’s Menu for £6.95 which includes a main meal, side, drink and dessert. Available every day for children 10 and under.
Top Tip: Try to find Nelson’s Spare Nose: This pink nose stuck in the grey granite of Admiralty Arch (look inside the arch taking traffic out of The Mall) is said to be a spare for Nelson in Trafalgar Square, or a tribute to the Duke of Wellington, famous for his large nose.
Hyde Park covers 350 acres and is home to a number of famous landmarks including the Serpentine Lake, Speakers’ Corner and the Diana, Princess of Wales Memorial Fountain so you will definatelly enjoy scooting about in this centre of things to do. Maybe you’ll want to try and follow the Diana Princess of Wales Memorial Walk by following the plaques and discover the full history of the park and its sites? Or maybe you just want to check out the highlights? If that’s the case then you’ll definitely want to have a climb of the huge wooden pirate ship is the amazing centrepiece of the Diana, Princess of Wales’ Memorial Playground. You should also explore Kensington Palace where there’s loads to explore, graba a family trail, scoot down the wiggly walk or try one of their Tiny Explorer’s sessions. There’s also the Serpentine Galleries who’s exhibitions are always a wonder. You could probably spend a week exploring Hyde Park and still not try everything so this is definitely a winner if you’re looking for scooting adventures this Half Term.
FAMILY FRIENDLY EATS: Aubaine offers a beautiful place to relax after your Hype Park adventure and their kids menu is full of delicious, healthy food but if you’re looking for something that will fit around your on the go adventure then the Hungry caterpillar lunch at Kensington Palace Cafe is for you.
Top Tip: If you’ve any energy left after exploring vast Hyde Park, head over to South Kensington to visit the the superb Natural History Museum and their awesome Otherworlds exhibition that is currently on, the Science Museum or the Victoria and Albert Museum (aka the V&A) who always have great family activities on throughout school holidays to try your hand at.
Greenwich Park hosts the Prime Meridian Line and Royal Observatory and is also part of the Greenwich Maritime World Heritage Site, home to The National Maritime Museum and Old Royal Naval College so you will love taking a scoot around this gorgeous part of London. The most historic of all Royal Parks, Greenwich Park dates back to Roman times and was enclosed in 1427. Check out the statue of General Wolfe from which you can witness imperious views across the River Thames all the way to St. Paul’s Cathedral. If mindblowing vista’s are something you love then you should check out the Astronomy Centre for free! Unravel the mysteries of the cosmos in
these interactive galleries or get a ticket for the Peter Harrison Planetarium, and take a tour bus of the Universe taking you on amazing journeys to explore and experience the wonders of the night sky with expert commentary from real astronomers. Venture a little more into town and you can have a wander round the Cutty Sark and discover what life was like on board the legendary sailing ship, the world’s sole surviving tea clipper, and fastest ship of her time.
FAMILY FRIENDLY EATS: The Rivington Grill Greenwich is right next to the Picturehouse Cinema and offers a fantastic Kids Eat Free menu that offers a main, a drink and a scoop of ice cream. They also provide toddler-friendly chunky crayons for colouring in to keep your little adventurers occupied.
Top Tip: If you’re looking for a new scooting experience then why not try the Greenwich Foot Tunnel which links the Cutty Sark to Island Gardens, Tower Hamlets. Not only can you check out the three acres of waterfront parkland but you’ll get there in style by taking the tunnel that takes you under the River Thames!
Battersea Park is one of the London’s best-loved green spaces. Scoot through this amazing space and you’ll take a fascinating journey through its history. The park is filled with hidden gems such as the Peace Pagoda, the Thrive Garden, the Barbara Hepworth Sculpture and the Pumphouse Gallery. Keep an eye out during half term at the Pumphouse will be working with illustrators Pencil & Help and dancer CoDa Dance, running a series of free art activities and events. Don’t forget that Battersea is also home to the amazing Battersea Park Children’s Zoo a wonderful little Zoo in the middle of the park, perfect to scoot round while seeing all your favourite animals plus they have a Love Heart Hunt this half term. If you’re fed up of staying on the ground then why not try Go Ape, the award winning high wire tree top adventure.
FAMILY FRIENDLY EATS: A British fusion restaurant with visually stunning dishes as well as fresh, seasonal food and reasonably priced set menus, Cornish Tiger has its own reading corner with specially-selected books for children under five.
Top Tip: Battersea Arts Centre is a short scoot from the park and they welcome families of all ages. Bring little ones to The Bee’s Knees – their magical indoor play space for under 5s, relax in their family friendly cafe and join us on Family Saturdays for fun, food and free activities for ages 0-11. Older children and young people can get involved in their Homegrown programme and they’re also running family shows during Half Term.
QUEEN ELIZABETH OLYMPIC PARK
With 560 acres of parklands, there’s lots to explore at Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park. As the first Olympic Park to integrate art into the landscape right from the start there is an incredibly diverse selection of work. Scoot along the trails and you’ll discover trees that mark time, living walls and the Fantastic Factology. Or become an explorer with the parks awesome explorer pack and learn everything there is to know about the park while doing fun activities with this awesome trail through the park. Feel on top of the world at the UK’s tallest sculpture the Arcelormittal Orbit, Kids currently go free!
Feel like a world Champion by taking a dip at the London Aquatics Centre, the same venue where all those swimming medals of 2012 were won. Get ready for World Book Day at the Discover Children’s Story Centre! They have on at the moment an amazing interactive exhibition for children aged 0-11 that focuses on the stories of Michael Rosen! Go on bear hunts and salivate over chocolate cake in this inspiring event. Cheer on London’s only professional basketball team, the London Lion or have a go yourself at the Copper Box Arena. Then when you’re done with all that excitement by catching a film or just having a wander round the shops at Westfield Stratford City. Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park is the scooting adventure of champions so have fun!
FAMILY FRIENDLY EATS: Stay a Champion at Cafe Football the perfect spot for the footie mad, it’s full of good food and good atmosphere too! The tables have colouring sets for kids and there’s a kiosk selling pick ‘n mix sweets, cakes and ice creams. It also has high chairs and a separate disabled toilet with a baby-changing table.
Top Tip: The Park is full of fantastic Play Areas so be sure to check out the Tumbling Bay Playground which is full of rock pools, sand pits and treehouses to ensure that kids get to play in a real, natural environment. There is also the Pleasure Gardens play areas which are designed to let kids play freely with gigantic activities to ensure that waiting your turn isn’t an issue.