On Saturday we headed out into Central London, a fairly easy journey for us as it’s around 25 minutes from Carshalton. We decided on a trip to the London Transport Museum as it’s somewhere we’ve wanted to go for a long time, and as well as that the Shaun in the City exhibition of Shaun the Sheep figures is happening around London right now.
The London Transport Museum shows the history of transport in London; in case you hadn’t guessed. There’s plenty for kids there, and with it being in the heart of Covent Garden, there’s enough for adults too. Your entry gives you an Annual pass to the museum so you can keep going back, which is a really good deal too at £16. All under 18’s get in for free.
A Zone 1-6 travelcard costs £12 each, which has gone up rather a lot since the last time I bought one – so we decided to use the 2 for 1 deal to get our Transport Museum tickets, which requires a rail ticket to qualify(Oyster cards don’t count). With a Transport Museum ticket at £16 we’d still be in credit. The downside of this was we didn’t read the small print, and the free ticket has to be a day pass – fair enough, they’re a museum and had we done then we wouldn’t have done the deal, so bear in mind when you go!
There was loads for H – dressing up, trying out vehicles, sitting in old carriages, learning about London’s history – and quite a topical one, there’s a small area made to feel like a tube station but set up with seats and bunks like an air raid shelter. I insisted H sat and watched the video, and she was asking lots of questions and really engaged by it. At the start of the trail everyone gets a stamper card – you look for numbered signs along the way and stick your card into it, press the stamper and you’ll have a shape cut out or stamped upon it. There were lots of activity cards at the entrance as well which we took a few of to do in our own time.
As well as the Transport Museum, there’s the Shaun in the City tour happening right now in Central London. We downloaded the app to find them as we’re the kind of people who walk right past things without seeing them (this has happened several times) – so having something which shows us the direction and whereabouts of each sheep was helpful. You can get the app for Apple and Android phones, and it costs but with all money supporting sick children in the UK – so we didn’t complain!
We managed to find seven of the 50 in London at the moment – starting at Buckingham Palace (we got the train in to Victoria), we found one in St James’s Park, walking up The Mall to Trafalgar Square there are two further ones there, then head towards Covent Garden for another two. (then we had a break and went to the museum)
Waterloo Bridge has them at either end, so another excuse for a sit down (or in H’s case a game of Duck Duck Goose outside Somerset House) before we finished at the London Eye, using our Merlin passes to have a sit down for 30 minutes, the lure of any further sheep long gone as it was nearly 7pm!
It was a fun day out, it didn’t cost us too much money and we got to walk around rather than relying on public transport. Had we realised we’d do so much walking it would have been cheaper to get a London Terminals return ticket (approx £8 for us in Zone 5) – so if your child enjoys walking distances (this was approx 5.5km) then it’s worth considering if you’re doing the 2 for 1 deal and need a railcard.
*please note – when we visited the London Transport Museum they were getting back to normal after the powercut on Kingsway. We’re more than aware of it as it affects Shaun’s work. When we went they couldn’t serve hot food and had a limited supply of sandwiches. Some people had shouted at staff which is a bit rude and unfair – they’re doing the best they can given the circumstances. Hopefully things will be getting back to normal now for them anyway.*