16 January 2015
Reviewed by Lora Hole
My family and I visited the At-Bristol science centre for their special Toddler Takeover: Crazy Creatures day. This is somewhere we had been wanting to go for a long time so we were excited to see what it had to offer. At-Bristol is in a great city centre location with plenty of nearby car parking and surrounded by restaurants if you want to make a day of it.
We were greeted at the ticket desk by friendly staff and we found this to be true of all the staff we encountered whilst we were there. The centre is spread across two large floors. There are plenty of toilets and baby changing facilities in the venue all of which we found to be clean and well kept. Lockers are also available for hire which was really useful to be able to leave our bags and coats so we could enjoy ourselves.
There are lots of really interesting exhibits in At-Bristol including one which shows how processes within the body works and another one were you bite a metal pole and put your fingers in your ears to hear the music playing on the iPod attached that is in a vacuum. There’s also a section where you are put through your paces when you become a contestant on a TV show and can play head to head with another person. The newest section of the centre is all about food and how it gets from the garden to our plate. There is a brilliant game in which you and a friend spin a wheel and a tap dispenses different flavours of water and you have to guess what each tastes of.
As we were there for Toddler Takeover day, there were lots of extra activities to keep young children interested. There was an area where toddlers could make feather hats which was a lot of fun and with feathers flying everywhere, it was great not to have to be the one to clean up afterwards. Another extra was the interactive story time which was on regularly throughout the day where the children were encouraged to participate and they looked like they were having a great time. There was also a kids disco and the Little Stars planetarium show, which is aimed at the under 5s, was shown several times. As the planetarium show had sold out by the time we got to At-Bristol, we were told to go to the last showing anyway as people may not turn up with it being the end of the day. We were nervously put on a waiting list with a few other families but we were really lucky that we all got in. The show is great for kids and something my two year old had never experienced before so she kept saying wow at the amazing view of the stars. The show is presented by a girl and we thought she was very good with the children, keeping them interested but also keeping it simple enough that they could follow what was going on. I think this would be one of the big highlights of the day for all ages. We completed our day with a bit of drawing and animating at the Animate It! section on the second floor. This was a big hit with the children and something my husband and I also enjoyed with my husband drawing an impressive picture of Wallace and Gromit!
We had a great day and found it fascinating and full of things we had never seen in any other science centres we have been to before. Having so many activities aimed at the toddlers was great and made the parents lives easier so we could enjoy exploring too. Toddler Takeover days are run several times a year with different themes and I would definitely return again. With the price of the tickets being greatly reduced for these special days and under 3s being free, the day out is brilliant value for money. I will be recommending this to all the mums I know as something different to do to keep the children entertained especially at this time of year when it’s sometimes more difficult as you can’t always do outdoors activities.
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For more information, events or to book tickets visit www.at-bristol.org.uk.
At-Bristol Science Centre, Anchor Road, Harbourside, Bristol, BS1 5DB | 0845 345 1235