Eureka – The National Children’s Museum
Last weekend we visited Eureka Museum in Halifax. We were meeting friends from Manchester and Harrogate so decided to meet somewhere middlish.
There was 3 families with eight children aged between 2.5 and 8 and they all absolutely loved it. We arrived at 11 and only left at 4 because we had made plans to be elsewhere by 5. We could have stayed for so much longer and will definitely go back!
So why did we like it so much? Well in the words of my 4 year old. “Mummy do you know, Daddy says this is a museum! It’s a Museum, but it’s so much fun, AND Mummy you are allowed to touch everything!!” So that just about sums it up! It was fun, and you could touch everything!
There are literally hundreds of interactive, hands-on exhibits which the website tells you are ‘designed to inspire children aged 0 to 11 to learn about themselves and the world around them through play and discovery.’
Our kids literally spent hours playing in the kitchen making lunch, pretend M&S, post office and bank. The bank was a particular favourite as the cash machine dispensed cash and you could steal money from the vault! You could also be the security guard watching who was stealing! The M&S has little shopping trollies and they all loved getting the food off the shelves, putting it in the trolley and paying at the till. Probably more of a novelty as we never got to the supermarket in this house, online shopping being our shop of choice!
Parts of the downstairs felt a little outdated. Some of the touch screens weren’t very quick, and the appearance of others things was a little scruffy but kids don’t notice such things and it didn’t make a blind bit of difference to them!
The upstairs exhibit however felt brand new and we spent most of our time here. I didn’t take a note of the name of the area but it was the area which focused on parts of the human body. How tall are you?
How long is your stride?
Large teeth exhibits.
The doctor’s chair? We couldn’t get the kids away from the doctors chair and I resolved to buy some bandages when I got home as it kept them entertained for hours!
There are inside and outside areas to eat your picnic and a large cafe that served decent(ish) coffee. I love attractions that provide an inside area to eat your own picnic, I think it means they truly appreciate the issues parents have.
When we looked at booking Eureka, I was a little surprised at the price. At £11.95 for each of us (5), it was going to cost around £60 for a day out. This was however before I realised that this was an annual pass. Having spent the day here, our friends all agreed that this was very very good value as we would definitely all be back. We actually obtained free entry in exchange for this honest review but would have happily paid.
What is also particularly good about Eureka is its accessibility. This isn’t something as a family we need to use but having looked at their website, some of the things they offer are brilliant. The bookable Extra Pair of Hands service provides families and organised groups with a specially trained enabler to support them throughout their visit.
The service is also free with an annual pass, and each family is entitled to two supported visits (each visit lasting two hours) per year. The service must be booked at least two weeks in advance of your visit.
In summary Eureka really does live up to it’s name as The National Children’s Museum and we will definitely be back.