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NANNIES IN THE CITY

June 20th, 2014

Trying to keep children entertained during the summer months can be exhausting work for any child carer. London offers some of the best activities of any city in the world that are accessible, entertaining and educational and just waiting to be explored. Here are QP’s child care expert’s top recommendations for a great day out in town.

MUSEUMS
The Natural History Museum is a perfect way to keep children entertained, especially on a day when the great British weather lets us down. The museum, best known for its dinosaur exhibition, comprises of 70 million plant, animal, fossil, rock and mineral specimens. The building in itself is spectacular and can certainly be enjoyed by both children and adults. You could spend the whole day there and still not discover everything.
http://www.nhm.ac.uk/

If you do manage to see all you want at The Natural History Museum then The Science Museum is just a stone’s throw away. Here, you can really have a hands-on approach to science, enjoying a 4D cinematic experience showing science and nature documentaries. You can also get your face replicated in the sand!
http://www.sciencemuseum.org.uk/

BATTERSEA PARK CHILDRENS ZOO

This is a perfect little zoo to take the kids to. Set in the beautiful gardens of Battersea Park, the children can get up close with nature in the petting zoo. They can meet Lemurs, Tamarins, Donkeys Goats, Sheep, Guinea pigs, Rabbits, Squirrel Monkeys, Meerkats and Otters.
The zoo is open 10am - 4pm in winter and 5pm in summer and at weekends. The Otters and Meerkats are fed at 11.00am and 2.30pm, whilst the monkey feedings are at 11.30am and 3pm. Entry is £6.50.
www.batterseaparkzoo.co.uk

PARLIAMENT HILL LIDO

Nestled on the outside of the idyllic setting of Hampstead Heath, Parliament Hill Lido is the perfect place to escape the smoggy London weather. The pool was built in 1938 and refurbished in 2005 – whilst the pool is unheated, wetsuits are permitted. There is a paddling pool for under-fives and a café.
Early morning and evening £2, concs £1, under-16s and over-60s free; daytime £5.50, concs £3.50, family £14.50 (two adults and up to three children); season tickets available
http://www.cityoflondon.gov.uk/things-to-do/green-spaces/hampstead-heath/swimming/Pages/default.aspx

SOMERSET HOUSE
If it is culture you are after then Somerset House is the obvious choice – ideally located on the north side of Waterloo Bridge, originally a Tudor palace, Somerset House was demolished in 1775 and an entirely new building was created. Today it hosts a stunning gallery, a beautiful fountain courtyard (ideal for kids to play in and cool down) and a terraced café and restaurant. Workshops for children take place at weekends and in the summer holidays. There is also an outdoor film screen where you can often catch movie classics such as ET and Sense and Sensibility.
If you fancy grabbing a bite to eat before catching the train home then head to Southbank: a five minute walk over Waterloo Bridge, it hosts a wide variety of restaurants and cafés from Giraffe to Wagamama to name but a few.
http://www.somersethouse.org.uk/

HAMPTON COURT MAZE

You can, quite literally, spend hours in this maze with what seems like never-ending twists, turns and dead ends. Great for both children and adults alike, it was originally commissioned around 1700 by William III and described by Ernest Law in 1926 as ‘the most famous maze in the history of the world, and immeasurably the one most visited’
Just make sure you don’t lose the kids!
Entry is £2.75 per child under 15 years of age.
http://www.hrp.org.uk/