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Things to do in London this February half-term

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Things to do in London this February half-term Wednesday, 1st February 2023

The February half-term is just around the corner, so we’ve put together some ideas for family-friendly activities in London. From interesting museums to interactive masterclasses, there’s plenty to suit all budgets and ages.

Museums galore!

There are so many fantastic museums across the capital, many of which are free to visit.

Immerse yourself in two million years of human history, art and culture at the British Museum, in Bloomsbury. The Egyptian artefacts are always popular, but there’s also a trove of remarkable objects from the Americas, China and Africa to be explored. About ten minutes away you’ll find Honey and Co, a husband-and-wife run café serving delicious Middle Eastern lunch options (plus cake!).

Children of all ages will love the Natural History Museum in Kensington, home to millions of plant, animal, fossil, rock and mineral specimens as well as animatronic dinosaurs and an earthquake simulator. And just a short walk away, the Science Museum houses seven floors of fun (and learning!); offering hands-on exhibits, incredible inventions and machines to make the mind boggle. Then head down Exhibition Road to Café de Nata for a handmade Portuguese custard tart and a refreshing cup of freshly ground coffee.

Make a day of it with a visit to nearby Hyde Park or head across the river to Battersea Park where the children’s zoo is home to smaller animals such as otters, capuchins and chinchillas. In the park you'll find The Pear Tree Café, with a gorgeous view over the Boating Lake and delicious all-day brunch and lunch options.

See the top sights with London Pass

If you’re in town for the whole week, a cost-effective way to see the sights is The London Pass. With access to 80+ attractions across the capital, you can see explore the Tower of London and ZSL London Zoo, take an Uber Boat down the Thames, or enjoy a Hop-on Hop-off bus tour.

In West London, visit the former home of Henry VIII at Hampton Court Palace, or discover the 50,000 plants housed in the collection at Kew Gardens.

Richmond Park is also a great spot to take the whole family for some deer-watching! While in the area, enjoy some retail therapy at the many independent shops and boutiques. Try Feather & Stitch for curated Danish clothing brands. The Open Book offers – as they’ve brilliantly put it – “books, cards, wrapping paper and charm”. And at Bridge and Hill Livingstore you can enjoy a specialty coffee or a meal before browsing a gorgeous selection of homeware products, and learning about the artists and craftspeople behind them.

To the South-East, Cutty Sark is always fun for the younger ones, while the Royal Observatory offers live science and astronomy demonstrations and shows at the Planetarium. Nearby Greenwich Park is also lovely for an afternoon walk for all the family – with clear skies you can enjoy a magnificent view of the city skyline.

Get creative

Imagine Children’s Festival returns to the Southbank Centre this half-term, with a packed programme of children's theatre, comedy, music, literature, poetry and dance. The festival celebrates creativity, diversity and the vibrancy of the capital, and includes a wide range of free, inclusive and accessible events and activities – so there really is something for everyone!

If you need a breather, head to Southbank Tower to enjoy a coffee and a bite at Black Sheep Coffee and Cocktails – wonderfully cosy, with a welcoming team that has you leaving with a smile!

Over at the National Gallery, a free drop-in ‘Explore, build, play’ workshop will keep the young ones occupied as they explore scale, shapes and sensory materials to create new structures, guided by artists.

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