London with Kids

We did a ton of research on what to do with Nolan while in London.  Things to see and do that would be appropriate for him and that he would enjoy. In case anyone ever asks me, hey, what would you recommend for kids in London, I thought I’d just write it out.

Here’s a good list of all the things we did with Nolan while in London. I’ll also provide my personal rating based on a 5-star rating system. The more stars, the better the experience.

Hop on/off Bus Tour of London

KGB Rating: 

Personally, I really enjoyed this bus tour and because Nolan loves buses so much, he actually really enjoyed it too. We didn’t hop on and off much, but we did make the full loop and I thought it was a good way to see all the sites. We purchased tickets online ahead of time.

Science Museum

KGB Rating: 

The museum was really great. Really interactive, though we found some oft he exhibits didn’t work properly.  We spent about 2-hours in the museum in total and Nolan stayed engaged the entire time. No need for tickets, you just walk-in, though there is a place for donations.

National History Museum

KGB Rating: 

The museum was really great. We did both the National History and Science Museum on the same day, so by the time we got to the National History Museum, Nolan was pretty tired.  We only made it about an hour in the National History Museum, though I think we could have spent another hour.  The Dinosaur exhibit was by far our favorite.  No need to purchase tickets, you just walk-in, though there is a place for a “donation.”

Rainforest Cafe

KGB Rating: 

No, that’s not a mistake, 0 stars. This place was terrible. We knew going in it was going to be “tourist trap,” but it was so much worse.  Terrible, overpriced food and it was filthy.

London Zoo

KGB Rating: 

Overall, I wasn’t that impressed with the zoo and Nolan didn’t seem to be either.  It was a zoo and everything you’d expect a zoo to be.  Nolan enjoyed the Bug Exhibit the most. It was a hot day, so a lot of the animal were off exhibit.  We spent about 2-hours walking around the zoo and we did purchase tickets online before going.  Nolan was ready to leave before I was.

Transportation Museum

KGB Rating: 

If I could give it 6-stars I would. Nolan loved, loved, loved this museum. Of all the museums, we went to this as his favorite. We spent about 3-hours in the museum and I was dragging him out.  There are a couple really nice interactive play areas and they did a really cool scavenger hunt throughout the museum. This is a must do if you have kids that loves buses, trains, etc. I did book tickets online before going.

KIDZANIA

KGB Rating: 

I didn’t get to take Nolan personally to KIDZANIA, but Jim and Nolan really enjoyed it.  Jim went on a parents day, so he was able to go with Nolan throughout the day. It was about a 4-hour event. You do need to book online before going.  It was a little pricey, but worth it.

Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park

KGB Rating: 

By far one of the coolest parks we went to, but Nolan didn’t seem very impressed.  There was a really cool water and sand area, but Nolan didn’t really love it.  We made it about an hour before he was ready to leave.  It was a super hot day, so it was really crowded. I think on another day, Nolan would have enjoyed it more.  Take your swimsuit and towel … or at least a change of clothes.

Lego Land

KGB Rating: 

While Nolan loved Lego Land, Jim and I didn’t love it so much. It was expensive and extremely crowded.  My only recommendation is to try to go on a weekday, we went on a weekend and that was a bad idea.  Again, Lego Land is one of those must-see, but it was a typical amusement park for me. We purchased tickets online ahead of time and Jim did get Nolan the Q-bot, so they didn’t have to wait in lines. We were there a total of about 4-hours. We rode about 5 rides and Nolan spent the most time in the really awesome playground area.

Adventure Playground at Bowood

KGB Rating: 

This would be my other MUST do in London. While it is a bit of drive, we really, really enjoyed our stay at Bowood. The hotel was lovely, the food was good, the grounds were impressive, and the kid area was incredible.

Stonehenge

KGB Rating: 

I feel a little bad for giving Stonehenge 2-stars, but it wasn’t as impressive as I wanted it to be and Nolan was disappointed, to say the least. I’m glad we went to see it because it is kinda cool, but we were only actually at the rocks for like 30-mins.

The London Eye

KGB Rating: 

Jim and Nolan went to the London Eye without me. I’m not a huge fan of heights, so I was just fine with that.  It was a really cool way to see the entire city.  The ride takes about 30-mins to complete the full circle. Nolan’s favorite part was seeing the people and cars get smaller as he went up and then bigger as he came down.

Hamleys Toy Store

KGB Rating: 

One of Jim and Nolan’s things while on our trip is to find a toy store in every city.  In London, Hamleys Toy Store was it and it was amazing.  Nolan loved it. There were 5 floors of toys and employees were demonstrating fun toys on every level.  They also have several demo toys out, so Nolan would play with them.  They spent about 2-hours in the store and Nolan is still talking about it and Jim actually wrote an entire post about their day together.

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