Seoul Children's Museum is located within Children's Grand Park and after our experience with the closure of Seoul Zoo and Seoul Land, we decided to check out the Korean website before heading out. It was a good thing we did because the zoo within Children's Grand Park was also closed due to Bird Flu. Thankfully, the Children's Museum was opened so we decided to spend the day away there.
(Get out from Exit 4 of Children's Grand Park (Line 7), walk straight for about 150 metres and you will see the main entrance to the park on your right.)
|Stocking up on snacks for the children's day out.|
|Main entrance to the Children's Grand Park|
|Huge space for the children to run around in.|
|We walked through the wooden pathway. Am very certain that the view along the pathway would look a lot more beautiful in summer when everything is freshly green.|
|Seoul Children's Museum|
|A cute pink dinosaur to welcome you|
|Space opens up once you enter. Lots of school children there on their field trips.|
|To ensure that you are eligible for free entry, do be sure to bring along proof of identification|
|Café on the first floor with free WiFi. The café serves up muffins and beverages. You would need to pack more substantial food if you intend to spend the whole day in the museum.|
Being our first time there, we were unprepared when it came to meals. Besides the cupcakes we bought from one of the stores at the subway station and some buns and biscuits, we had nothing. We went to the museum hoping that they served up kids friendly meals. We had to look for alternatives and settled for cup noodles from the convenient store just outside the museum. We were told that we could eat our food in the eating area on the third floor. However, after getting to the third floor, we were told by the staff that no cup noodles were allowed. For safety reasons as they were afraid that the hot liquid would spill and hurt some children. We ended up bringing the children out in the rain and cold to have their noodles in the convenient store. It was quite an experience eating in the cold. it was so cold that as the rain fell, it turned to ice. Hail stones!! Our hands were all numb. Lunch with children was never that quick. Quite a start to the day - cold, wind, rain, hail.
|Eating area on the third floor|
The museum is divided into 4 different floors with each floor focusing on different themes. B1 focuses on Experiences and Sensory Play, 1F focuses on Space, Art and Nature Play, 2F on Stories and Books while 3F focuses on Science and Culture Play. Since we were on the third floor, the children started from 3F first and worked their way down.
|Looking downstairs from the family lounge, we spotted a nice, safe, and cozy space for the very young to laze around with their parents. There were young toddler kids resting and even napping here.|
|Water aprons provided for different ages group and sizes.|
|Kids all ready to get themselves wild and wet|
|Watch how the balls travel through the pipes|
|Fascinated by the how a stream of air blown upwards can make the balls hover in place!|
|The harder you cycle and the harder you jump, the higher the balls will fly. A good way to keep all the kids active.|
|Walking down the runway in international costumes at Cultural Play section.|
|Different international costumes to change into.|
|Learning about currencies|
The kids spent more than an hour just exploring the level. We had to remind them that there are three more levels to explore in order to get them moving. And of course, no explanation fits better than the many photos we had taken of the kids enjoying their play.
|Exploring shadows in Space Play section|
|Motion sensitive animation screen follows you wherever you go, with a superimposed alien face.|
|Making a new friend through letter writing.|
|Drop the letter in the spaceship shuttle and see your letter fly (literally) through the pipes overhead|
|The letterbox (just behind the wall from the mail drop)|
|You can get into the thick of action by flying your own spaceship.|
|Braille experience at Beyond Sensory Play section|
|Learning the challenges of walking with legs of different lengths.|
|A world without sounds|
|Manoeuvring through the inconveniences of using a wheelchair|
|Walking the path as a blind.|
The museum covers many different aspects when it comes to children's play and learning. The Beyond Sensory Play section on B1 was quite unexpected of a children's museum. Or rather, we have not been to one that covers important societal values such as empathizing with the handicapped. We are all handicapped in one way or another but being able to experience the different kinds of disabilities open up the children's world to what is more important than themselves - others. The parents were able to talk about the experiences with the children on the way back to the apartment and highlight the need to empathize, accept and to embrace everyone, no matter what shapes and sizes, colors and kinds.
The museum offers cooking and performance workshops too. You would need to register for it early as the workshops are very popular. We did not manage to sign-up for any of them while we were there as everyone was just so busy exploring. The museum is definitely a good option for families with young children.
|Insert a scarf through one of the vacuum ports and watch it travel through the pipes and out up top, then try to catch it. The fun never ends.|
As we had an impromptu lunch, someone suggested a nice, hot meal, and we returned to Ssamsarang BBQ restaurant at Chungmuro. One of our mummies was not with us as the previous sitting (click HERE to find out more about this gem of a traditional Korean BBQ experience) and we wanted her to try it too.
After the meal, some of the parents were re-energized and ready for more exploration after waiting on the kids all day at the museum. The kids were housed in one apartment while their daddies and mummies made a short round of Dongdaemun Street Market just a couple of stations away.
|A family that plays together, stays together. After all, holidays are not just about exploring places, it's about being together too!|