Canadian Museum of Nature

by Brie

One of our favorite places to visit is the Canadian Museum of Nature. We are usually there at least once or twice a week. Part of the reason is that it is just a few blocks from our house. The other reason is that both kids love it.

The Museum is still under construction, with half of the building closed to the public. The grand reopening is scheduled for the end of May, with some exciting new galleries opening, like an earth and water gallery. Is it sad that I am seriously excited about the new exhibits? Until then the kids and I are happy to be amused with the exhibits we have already seen a million times.

When I go to the Museum with both of the kids we always start on the first floor with the dinosaurs, because that is the girl's favorite floor. We walk around and marvel at all the reconstructed dinosaurs while she gives them funny names. I always try to stop and watch the Ankylosaurus death-blow video. That is my favorite.

If I am there alone with my toddler, we start on the fourth floor so that he can play in the bird hospital. Both kids love to pretend to be doctors and help the injured bird. And drive the truck. They like that too.

I am looking forward to when the kids are older and I have a chance to stop and read the information posted throughout the museum. I know I could be learning a lot more than I currently am. But right now I am too busy watching them pretend to be seals about to be eaten by a polar bear (second floor).

After we have made the rounds we all like to stop in the snack room. I'll be honest, some days I think this is everyone's favorite part. In talking with a security guard I learnt that the new cafeteria, part of the current renovation, will have a focus on kid friendly and healthy, organic food. We may be spending a good part of future visits there!

I find the prices at the Museum very reasonable. Until the grand opening, when the prices will be going up, the cost of entrance is $5 or $13 for families. Kids under 3 are free. You can also borrow a Nature Card from some libraries which will give you free membership for a family of five. Or head over on a Saturday morning when entrance is free for all.

We ended up buying an annual family pass for $50 because we visit so often. It is probably the best investment we have made, especially over the winter months when we are desperate to find things to do with the kids inside.

Whatever you decide to do I do suggest you go. And say hi to Boogie the dinosaur from me. He's the one right inside the door. Don't worry, he's friendly.

Brie is the mom of a 3.5 year old daughter "the girl" and eighteen month old son "the boy". You can read her blog at Capital Mom.