This week is all about time fillers for little ones. I often see on parents groups people looking for ideas for things to do in Central London but not wanting to fully commit to a museum. Possibly in between meeting friends or shopping. Here are just a few ideas. I may have missed somethings from my list – do let me know as this is what Guidebook baby is all about.
I have always had a soft spot for the Southbank as it has been a perfect meeting place for my friends who live south of the river. Now I have two toddlers in tow I have fallen in love with it all over again. I have a number of reasons why I think this is a great meeting spot for people with little ones. Reason number 1; it is bracketed by two stations that have step free access making it all that easier with the buggy. I often get off at London Bridge Station and then wander along to Waterloo. Taking the stress out of a trip out with the mega buggy.
- Borough Market. I will take any excuse to visit here and either just perve on the food or treat myself to something for later in the walk once I have burnt some calories.
- No 3. The walk. You have amazing views of London along the Southbank with lots of little interesting bits to show your little ones, if they haven’t decided to nap. There is the Golden Hinde and The Globe along the way so you can add a little history.
- No 4. The Tate. Lots of space for little ones to roam and baby changing on every floor. You can treat yourself to a gander at the art or with the current exhibition there is currently lots to see in Turbine Hall. The hall is also carpeted partially so perfect for toddlers/ crawlers.
- No 5. Tonnes of family friendly places to eat along the Southbank including Pizza Express, Carluccios, Wagamamas and Eat.
- No 6. The Royal Festival hall has lots of spaces to sit in and have a catch up and there is a Children’s library.
Finally… Jubilee Park is next to the London Eye and there is lots of space to sit and play. But the play park here is more suited to older kids so be aware.
I haven’t actually used this tip myself but I have heard so many other parents talk about this it had to be included. The Barbican has lots going on that make it a perfect meeting place when you have little ones. Here are all the reasons I can think of;
- There is lots of seating and space for little ones to roam.
- They have a cracking children’s library.
- There are often activities running for little ones. For example currently they are running ‘Blocks‘ but do check the website for current events.
- The part of the Museum of London is housed here.
- Lots of the restaurants in the Barbican are very family friendly. Little ones eat for free in ‘Barbican Kitchen‘.
A park is a perfect place to fill an hour between things and there are some cracking ones in Central London. These are especially useful for the shops. Here are my top picks…
- Corum Field’s (Bloomsbury)
- Hyde Park Playground, Buckhill Playground & The Diana Memorial Playground (Hyde Park)
- Horseferry Playground (Millbank)
- Marylebone Green Playground (Regents Park)
- Paddington Green Playground (Marylebone)
These parks made the pick because they have play equipment suited to toddlers and really near to other attraction/shops.
There are some great children’s libraries in London where you could fill an hour or so with a little one. Also this idea as a time filler is more in keeping with the British weather. Great libraries to investigate include
When on our travels in London I found a sign advertising play sessions at ‘St Giles in the Fields’ Church everyday of the week during term time. This church is just between Tottenham Court Road and Covent Garden. Perfect way to entertain little ones between a bit of shopping. There are lots of other groups running in central London during the week. My first tip would be to check the library timetables or you could check either of these blogs by clicking here or here (I am not sure how up to date these are).