The award-wining Eureka! National Children’s Museum aims to “inspire children to find out about themselves and the world around them” – an objective it brilliantly achieves through hundreds of imaginative, cleverly designed and highly interactive exhibits spread over six indoor galleries and a large outdoor space.
Among the numerous multi-sensory activities on offer, Zoom the Robot is the most popular as he’s fully interactive – talk to him and he talks back. In All About Me children can climb inside a cavernous mouth; they can become mechanics and give a car an MOT in Living and Working Together; shrink to the size of an insect and explore the sights, sounds and textures of a giant garden in the Sound Garden; and change their voices or compose their own music in Sound Space. While Eureka! is targeted mainly at the under 12s (with Desert Discovery and Creativity Space designed for the under 5s), there’s plenty here to enthral older children – and their adult companions – too.
There are three dedicated disabled parking bays around fifty yards from the main entrance (bypass the main car park and park beside the Eureka building), and straightforward, level access into the museum. Inside, there’s a low counter at the ticket desk and no awkward surfaces or gradients for wheelchair users to contend with; there are also a few wheelchairs available to borrow (best booked in advance). The museum has an induction loop, a talking map, large-print multi-sensory displays and a “Helping Hand” coordinator on the staff team. Outside, the Wonder Walk incorporates a sensory trail (for all) and a wheelchair accessible trail.
Food & drink: The accessible on-site café serves a wide range of tasty and nutritious hot and cold meals and snacks, with many child-friendly options. All food is freshly made on-site, including the made-to-order sandwiches. There’s a microwave available for heating baby food and a picnic area outside.