Tag Archives: kids

Ups and Downs of London’s Natural History Museum

London’s Natural History Museum is a real treat for adults and kids alike, however, I’m not sure it compares to other natural history museums such as the one in New York City or The Smithsonian. It has it’s ups and downs, and despite it’s lack of outstanding impression, I’d go back again.

The Down

What wasn’t great was the dinosaur exhibit. It’s not as big as one would expect. There aren’t that many fossils, and there might even be more posters and information cards up than bones around.

There's a good collection of animal specimens.

 

The Up

What was great was the ecology portion of the museum. The exhibit covers the basics of life on earth, the environment, climate, and ecosystems. It’s also a bit of eye candy for those who like beautiful and shimmering displays and shiny lights. And the kids will love the life size and blown up models of the farm and plant cells.

The ecology exhibits hosts a trace-like video encompassing nature, earth, oceans, and life.

 

Giant plant cell.

The Unique

What was unique about the museum was the exhibits on memory and how a baby is made. I’ve never seen such complex or unique exhibits like these at science museums or natural history museums. One could spend a half hour plus in each exhibit.

Exhibit on how babies are made.

 

The extensive memory and senses exhibit.

 

To Eat

If you get hungry, there are several eateries, but one can also bring a bag lunch and have that on the fronts steps or the museum’s side garden. 

When & When Not

Avoid going on Wednesdays and weekends if you can help it. If those are your only options, head out early because the line will be long – a half hour plus! So get there well before it opens if you want to get in early.

Impressive architecture.

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Photo of the Day – Imperial War Museum

March 9, 2010

A chunk of the Berlin Wall outside London's Imperial War Museum.

If you’re interested in history or war or both, London’s Imperial War Museum is an educational experience for adults and children alike.

London's Imperial War Museum.

 

The collection boasts exceeding numbers of artifacts from the 20th century. The major exhibits feature World War I and World War II. Not only can one see letters, weapons, uniforms, and read about the tactics of the wars, but a unique trench experience is set up for those who want to walk through the model.

The trench experience.

 

While the exhibits are large, they also wind their way in circles. It’s easy to get a bit turned around, miss something, or look at things backwards rather than forwards. 

Following the world wars are smaller sections on the Korean War, the Vietnam War, the Cold War, and conflicts in the middle east. The most recent war highlighted in the Persian Gulf War, while even smaller exhibits highlight genocide and conflicts within the last few decades.

Some of the most ironic things about the museum is the British school children and teens touring around. While a light shined the words ‘Cold War’ on to a wall, a group of uniformed school girls took their picture below the sign; smiling in a line as if they were posing for a calendar. Around the corner at the Vietnam exhibit, a girl walked up to several TVs playing a montage of war and administrative footage to the music of Jimi Hendrix’s version of  “The Star Spangled Banner,” and said, “Why do we have the same thing playing on three screens, and very weird music playing?” She turned away from the display and went on giggling with her friends.

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Why Paris Disappointed Me

 

It looks best at night.

I really hate to complain. Well, not really. But I hate to complain about such a great city like Paris. I mean, it’s the heart of France. Yes? No? There’s a lot of culture. International recognition. It boasts of Napoleon and the Louvre. The Louvre! But there were several things that I see as the downside. They kind of disappointed me. Maybe London has spoiled me (not that this is an English verses French kind of thing).

What Mona sees everyday.

10 Reasons Why Paris Disappointed Me:

  1. Watch out for land mines because there’s dog poopy everywhere
  2. The winter gardens aren’t as well-kept as other cities like London
  3. Smells similar to a waft of air from sewage plant
  4. There’s an exceptional amount of litter
  5. If you attempt French out of courtesy, you’re still greeted with hostility
  6. The metro smells worse than the waft of airs outside
  7. Lots of gypsies come up to you asking, “Do you Speak English?”
  8. There’s a startling number of homeless people, or at least that can be seen
  9. The automatic metro doors wait for no one – don’t get your head slammed
  10. The Louvre is more busy than a shopping mall

 

Entertainment for the kids.

 

Too bad you have to pay... more than its really worth.

 

If you take a boat ride, do it on a sunny day.

 

More free entertainment for the kids.

 

Update: March 9, 2010, 10 p.m., London

FYI – Major Cities I’ve been to:

  1. Barcelona
  2. Florence
  3. Kaunas
  4. London
  5. Madrid
  6. Montréal
  7. Nice
  8. New York City
  9. Paris
  10. Quebec City
  11. Rome
  12. Valencia
  13. Vilnius 
  14. Washington, D.C.

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Photos of the Day – Plethora deux

February 2, 2010

I call them biscuits, they call them scones.

 

February 3, 2010

When you don't have fresh echinacea from the farm, this is the next best thing.

 

February 4, 2010

Westfield shopping area, by the BBC, by where I work, which isn't the BBC but it's close...

 

February 5, 2010

Obviously today was a let down.

 

February 6, 2010

Crepes in Paris.

 

February 7, 2010

Better than the Louvre.

 

February 8, 2010

This snow severely delayed the tubes - and I'm not even being sarcastic.

 

February 9, 2010

The Wallace Collection. Would this room have not matched my prom dress?

 

February 10, 2010

This is what journalists do.

 

February 11, 2010

View of the Westfield shopping centre from my work... near the BBC.

 

February 12, 2010

The building with all the Windows has the title Telephone Exchange written on it.

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