The best museums in the UK for families

by Emily Gilbert |
Updated on

If travel isn't on the agenda for you this year or you're simply pulling together days out ideas for the summer, there are so many wonderful museums across the UK that are suitable for families with little ones.

Many museums are themed with particular interests such as science or dinosaurs while others encompass a variety of exhibitions. Plus, for many, small children under a certain age go free. Bonus!

Take a look at our favourites below...

Techniquest Science Discovery Centre, Cardiff

A truly hands-on experience for your budding scientist, astronaut or engineer, Techniquest offers interactive experiences that are accessible to all. We also love that they hold dedicated toddler days where pre-school children take priority on Techniquest’s exhibition floor in a safe environment. The bright colours on the exhibition floor appeal to young children, who are encouraged to explore.

Adult - £10.90
Child (3-5) - £9.05
Under threes - free

Toddler Day tickets
Adult - £9.09
Child (3-15) - £7.27
0-2 - Free

Science Museum, London

Undoubtedly one of our favourite museums in the UK, all members of the family are actively encouraged to get involved with many of the displays here. We'd encourage you to head to The Garden, an interactive space created especially for children aged 3–6 and their parents and carers. From giant tubes that carry whispers to a flying saucer that radiates light, it’s the ideal place for youngsters to discover science through play. There's also the Pattern Pod, an exciting multi-sensory area for children under 8 years old with fun, interactive exhibits that encourage them to recognise and copy patterns—or create entirely new ones of their own.

Free entry but some special exhibitions can have a cost.

Thackray Museum of Medicine, Leeds

A brilliant way of highlighting to your child how fortunate they are to have access to medical supplies such as medication and vaccines, this museum pays fitting tribute to the health heroes we should all be aware of. Tickets are for 12 months so you can come as often as you like!

Adult - £11.95
Child (5-16) - £8.95
Under 5s - Free

Dinosaurland Fossil Museum, Lyme Regis

One for any dinosaur fans out there, according to Dinosaurland, they are "aimed at children from 5 to 85 with an interest in fossils and dinosaurs." The museum houses a spectacular collection of the local Jurassic marine fossils and explains what they are, why they are there and what they mean. You'll truly feel like you stepped back in time as you take in the largest Ichthyosaur through ammonites, belemnites, fish and starfish to the tiniest microfossil.

Adult -  £5.00
Children (5-16) - £4.00
Under 5s - Free

National Space Centre, Leicestershire

Space is a huge mystery to most children (and er, us adults too!) which is what makes the National Space Centre a great day out. There are six galleries, including the iconic Rocket Tower and the UK’s largest domed planetarium, crammed full of space suits, rockets, satellites and meteorites.

Adult - £15.50.
Child (5-16) - £12.50.
Under 5 - Free

People’s History Museum, Manchester

This fab museum provides opportunities for people of all ages to learn about, be inspired by and get involved in ideas worth fighting for; ideas such as equality, social justice, co-operation, and a fair world for all. Little ones can borrow a backpack stuffed with tools and tasks to help them around the museum and there’s a well-stocked craft table for creations inspired by the exhibits.

Free entry but a suggested donation of £5.

Ripon Workhouse, North Yorkshire

It may be small but this museum does an excellent job of showing families what life would have been like at the workhouse. You'll get to dress like a pauper and sit in a Victorian Schoolroom plus learn about the food you would have had to eat and go down to the garden and discover all the wildlife who visit it. Museum tickets are all valid for 12 months.

Adult (16+) - £9.00
Concession - £8.50
Child (6-15) - £6.50
Child (5 and under) - Free

Eureka! The National Children’s Museum, Halifax

Specifically aimed at kids aged 0-11, Eureka! has six unique zones to discover, each filled with hundreds of interactive exhibits designed to inspire enquiring minds to find out about themselves and the world around them. Zones include: Desert Discovery, SoundSpace and the SoundGarden.

Adults - £13.95
Child (3-15) - £13.95
Child (1-2) - £5.95
Under 1 year - Free

Magna Science Adventure Centre, South Yorkshire

Magna Science
Magna is home to over 100 hands-on exhibits themed on Air, Earth, Fire and Water, the ‘elements’ needed for making steel, where you can discover science, technology and the region’s industrial heritage. Specially designed to let children of all ages learn through play, the SCI-TEK Adventure Playground is an outdoor adventure with spinning bowls, tilted roundabouts, twisted slides, rockets and castles.

Adult - £13.95
Child (4-15) -£11.95
Child (2-3) - £5.50
Child (Under 2) - Free

Looking for some more days out inspo? Check out these theme parks for toddlers.

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