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London for a Twixmas break with nearly 4 year old

(13 Posts)
lotsofthingstolearn Tue 09-Aug-16 15:24:15

Looking at taking our nearly 4 year old to London in between christmas and new year but would be grateful of advice

Firstly is he two young? He's not that great at walking thought we could take his scooter and hopeful that the fun of it all will spur him on!

Any recommendations for a hotel? Looked at Premier Inn but it's one of those new hub hotels in Covent Garden. Don't want to pay a fortune

Also things to do- is theatre off the agenda? There is the gruffalo playing which we can go and see but he loves music etc. Not sure what is suitable- hear Matilda is quite dark in places etc.

cestlavielife Tue 09-Aug-16 18:50:46

A pantomime eg hackney theatre or Richmond theatre. Would be best or specific kids show eg polka theatre etc. Southbank will hsve kids stuff.
Outdoor skating they have penguins for kids to hold onto or similar.
Toy shops or toy floors eg harrods to look at.
Southbank Xmas fair
Winter wonderland go in the morning when less busy

lotsofthingstolearn Wed 10-Aug-16 14:29:31


Now looking at budget hotels that are central! :-)

indecisivedoctor Wed 10-Aug-16 14:35:41

Gruffalo great for that age. I took my 2.5yo a few weeks back and she was slightly too young. ( in fairness they do say 3+). Also stick man is playing over xmas hols in London.

noramum Thu 11-Aug-16 13:06:56

Please re-consider the scooter. Central London is busy anyway and I hate children scooting around all the time and just bumping into you.

OK for parks but not areas like Southbank, Covent Garden or similar. I would get an Oyster Card for you and just uses busses, lots to see from them if you get the big ones. Routes like No. 15 do lots of tourist spots.

And I had a child with a scooter, so I know they can be great.

Most museums are free or often the child is free like Transport Museum where only the adults pay. Some do holiday activities for free like Museum of London. Natural History museum is often busy at that time of year, you need to plan any visit there wisely.

It is still Panto season, so you may want to look into them. Greenwich theatre does one, great little theatre, lots to do in the area and cheaper than West End. Mathilda - I know children as young as 4 went but I think they are a bit too young. Gruffalo etc are better. There is a children theatre near London Bridge which is quite good I heard.

One tip - get picnic stuff from a supermarket, rolls, ham, drinks, yoghurt, and do a picnic. Most museums have areas with lockers where families can sit and eat. Saves a fortune and then go for a piece of cake instead.

coolaschmoola Thu 11-Aug-16 13:10:12

Yes to everything but the scooter. That is the worst idea I've ever heard. It is the centre of busiest city in the country, at Christmas, when it will be heaving with tourists and traffic. Without a very firm grip on his hand he could easily get lost very quickly.

cestlavielife Fri 12-Aug-16 19:38:32

You can take a scooter if you prepared to be mostly carrying it around til you hit a park or free stretch of pavement.

lotsofthingstolearn Fri 12-Aug-16 21:13:28

Thanks everyone.

mouldycheesefan Mon 15-Aug-16 08:27:41

We stay in premier inns. The one in Islington is good value and central. Just a couple mins walk from tube.
Do not take the scooter!
Avoid shopping areas, will be rammed for the sales.
All the museums are indoors and some are free, e.g science museum, natural history.
Personally we like the outdoor stuff in London such as strolling the south bank, going to the parks which may not be as fun in December.
Seeing a show is a good idea.
Boat trip on Thames if you pick a boat with a roof? London eye? Aquarium.
London transport museum not free but heard is good for four year olds.
Look at the London things to do page in tripadvisor it ranks all attractions you can look through for ones indoors for kids.
Kidzania at Westfield?

AnnPerkins Mon 15-Aug-16 09:51:12

The Shrek thing at County Hall is great. Not sure if it's still there though. Beware the people trying to sell you your photos in a special book just before you hit the gift shop.

Check out the Ibis at Blackfriars. An excellent location on a surprisingly quiet road.

Barbeasty Tue 16-Aug-16 10:00:04

If it's just 3 of you then you could look at the Ibis in the Docklands. Last year we got it at £40 a night for a family room between Christmas and New Year.

It's right by the cable car across the river, and we used that then got the thames clipper to Embankment. It's fairly easy to get back there using tube and DLR.

PolkaHeart Tue 16-Aug-16 10:07:00

Agree with everyone re no scooter!

Have a look at the Travelodge next to Clapham Junction station. You can be in Victoria or Waterloo within minutes, and might be slightly cheaper as its zone 2. Also; it's quite small, so won't be to noisy at night.

Winter Wonder Land is fab, but go in the morning. Wimbledon Theatre normally puts on a really good panto, and is easy to get to on the train or tube.

franksidebottom Sun 21-Aug-16 12:47:11

I always stay at the premier inn in wembley park right opposite the tube station and only a couple of stops into central London it's usually much cheaper. I stayed last christmas (21 dec) for one night with my. dd and only cost me 29 pound for the night for a decent clean room. A bus tour at night is lovely at christmas.

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