Heading into London with a toddler? We’ve got you covered.
As the capital of the UK, there are a huge number of baby and toddler days out in London that the whole family will love.
Huge parks and fascinating museums are par for the course when you’re visiting London, and you can also be sure of more unusual offerings like baby friendly concerts, city farms and child friendly theatre, that simply aren’t on offer outside of the city.
Let’s find out more…
- Fun Things To Do In Central London with Toddlers
- SEA LIFE Centre London Aquarium
- Coram’s Fields
- London Transport Museum
- Deen City Farm
- Bach to Baby Concert
- Discover Story Children’s Centre
- Hyde Park
- Science Museum
- Sketch Children’s Afternoon Tea
- V&A Museum of Childhood
- ZSL London Zoo
- Battersea Park
- ZAPSpace Trampoline Park
- Chickenshed Theatre
- Kensington Gardens
- Discovery Planet
- A Fine Mess
- Natural History Museum
- The Idol Soft Play Centre
- National Gallery Magic Carpet Storytelling
- Unicorn Theatre
- Big Fish Little Fish Daytime Gigs
- Walk or Bus through Central London
Fun Things To Do In Central London with Toddlers
SEA LIFE Centre London Aquarium
Babies and toddlers love aquariums thanks to the incredible sensory opportunities they offer – bright lights, unusual sounds and even the opportunity to touch and play with the water.
The SEA LIFE Centre London Aquarium is one of the best aquariums in the UK and is perfectly designed for younger children. Kids under 3 get free entry as well. It’s the perfect place to go in London with a toddler.
As well as different zones for Pacific and Atlantic creatures, you can enjoy the famous Shark Walk, Ray Lagoon and Seahorse Kingdom.
There are a huge number of beautiful parks in London but Coram’s Fields stands out from the crowd as one for children only. Don’t worry though – you can go in with your kids – it’s only adults without a child that are banned.
Coram’s Fields span 7 acres and includes a number of toddler friendly attractions like a sensory playground, adventure playground, paddling pool and sandpits.
They also have a regular under-5s drop-in session which is home to a soft play, reading corner, creative play station and more.
London Transport Museum
If your little one is transport mad, then the London Transport Museum is a great option for a day out in the city.
This is one of London’s best toddler friendly museums and actually there’s plenty here to interest all the family, including older children too. There’s the All Aboard Playzone for kids aged under 7 who are into imaginative play and Baby DLR, a dedicated area for babies, for the younger ones.
The museum’s central London location in Covent Garden means that there’s plenty to explore afterwards as well — little ones will especially love the street performers.
See more: the best London museums for toddlers
Deen City Farm
Not far from Merton Park in South London is the brilliant Deen City Farm, an urban farm dedicated to animal education with plenty to offer young kids.
The farm is home to a large number of animals including alpaca, goats, ferrets, chickens, rabbits, sheep, turkeys and much more. There’s also an aviary for keen birders.
For older kids, there’s also a riding school on site, as well as the usual farm shop, café and gardens.
Bach to Baby Concert
Bach to Baby has become a phenomenon across the south of England and is a great way to introduce your babies and toddlers to music culture.
Classical musicians bring the best of the world’s compositions to your kids’ ears in a friendly and accessible way, themed on popular children’s stories and songs. The concerts are held in venues across London and further afield. They even regularly play at Buckingham Palace if you’re after a real treat!
Take a look at their website for up-to-date concert information and to buy tickets.
Discover Story Children’s Centre
The Discover Story Children’s Centre is a hidden gem for kids in Stratford. Described as an ‘interactive story trail’, your kids can explore each of the magical worlds and indulge in some real creative play.
A great resource for kids with big imaginations, Discover also has an outdoor story garden perfect for sunnier days. Annual passes are available if you fancy repeating your visit a few times and this is a great choice for older children too during the school holidays.
Hyde Park is arguably the best of London’s royal parks and there’s undoubtedly a huge amount on offer here that your kids will love.
Right in the heart of London, it isn’t only great just for long walks – there’s also a playground, the Serpentine Lido and paddling pool if you fancy a swim, pedal boats and even a putting green.
A handful of family friendly cafes, plenty of toilets and even parking facilities should make your trip convenient too.
And make sure you head to the South Carriage Drive playground if you’re in London with a toddler.
Other London parks worth checking out (other than the ones on this list) include the Queen Elizabeth Olympic Park, Holland Park, St James Park, Greenwich Park, and Crystal Palace Park.
The Science Museum is one of London’s most famous and well regarded museums – but that doesn’t mean it’s out of reach for younger kids. We’d argue it’s a must-visit if you’re in London with a toddler.
Their many exhibitions and the sensory trail are very well suited to little ones There are special family trails around the museum that are designed for kids and many age appropriate events and activities too.
Sketch Children’s Afternoon Tea
Sketch, on Conduit Street, is one of the places to go for afternoon tea when you’re visiting London. But just because it has a fancy reputation doesn’t mean that it’s not suitable for kids.
They’ve actually got a special children’s afternoon tea set with appropriate finger sandwiches, sweet treats and juices. You even get a Pat the Bear stuffed toy with each booking!
V&A Museum of Childhood
Bethnal Green in East London is home to a smaller branch of the world famous V&A museum that’s exclusively dedicated to childhood.
As well as plenty of exhibitions about children, childhood and the issues affecting children today, there’s also lots of activities available for young kids to enjoy. Daily activities include arts and crafts sessions, tours and storytelling, while there are also regular open play sessions for the under-5s and Montessori sessions.
The onsite Benugo café is perfectly set up for kids with lots of meal and snack options are available.
ZSL London Zoo
One of the premier attractions for babies and toddlers in London is undoubtedly ZSL London Zoo. It’s situated In Regent’s Park in central London and is the world’s oldest scientific zoo.
Animal lovers, future vets and biologists will absolutely love this zoo (one of the UK’s best) – it’s home to a huge number of animals from all around the world, including Asiatic lions, zebras, pygmy hippos, penguins, meerkats, gorillas and many more.
Make sure you check the timetable when you arrive so you can observe some animal feedings. And, of course, head straight to the café when it’s time to feed your own little animals!
Situated in South-West London, just over the Chelsea Bridge, is the brilliant Battersea Park. Built in the Victorian age, there is plenty to see and do over its 200 acres including multiple children’s play areas.
It’s also home to the Battersea Park Zoo, a zoo specifically designed for young children. Although much smaller than the ZSL London zoo, there’s still lots to see and do – and tickets are much cheaper!
ZAPSpace Trampoline Park
In the heart of Stratford in East London is the ZAPSpace Trampoline Park, which hosts a regular ‘Little Zappers’ session for kids aged 1 to 5 years old every day.
There are three floors of trampolines available and they’ll have the space to themselves away from older kids during these sessions. There’s also a soft play available if they need a time out from all the jumping!
There’s plenty of seating available as well as a café and baby changing facilities.
If you’re looking for something a bit different to do with toddlers in London, then Chickenshed could be a good shout. Chickenshed is an inclusive theatre company that creates performances for and by everyone all the way across the spectrum in terms of background, age, ability and culture.
They have a thriving children’s theatre program that’s a great way to introduce your little one to the world of the stage. Recent productions include adaptations of David Walliams’ stories.
Chickenshed also host a number of workshops for young people, which are worth exploring for slightly older kids.
Another of the royal parks that are worth visiting if you’re in London with a toddler is Kensington Gardens.
It’s home to the brilliant Princess Diana Memorial Playground and, of course, is right by Kensington Palace if you’re looking for some additional sight-seeing.
The Diana Memorial Playground is home to an amazing pirate ship as well as other play sculptures. There’s also a great café and baby change facilities on site too.
Discovery Planet is a children’s amusement centre in Surrey Quays shopping centre, Southeast London. This indoor play area is suitable for toddlers all the way up to 10 year olds, as long as they’re shorter than 134cm.
Expect the usual soft play and ball pits. The centre is open every day although does have some special sessions just for under 2s. A ticket to the 4 o’clock club for those aged 9 months to 10 years comes with a free burger and fries meal. And, of course, there’s baby change facilities.
A Fine Mess
A Fine Mess are famous for their messy play parties and sessions that they run throughout London.
Messy play is an unparalleled sensory experience for babies and toddlers and really helps them to embrace their creativity. Check their website of details for when and where their next sessions will be held.
Natural History Museum
The Natural History Museum, on the same road as the Science Museum in South Kensington, is one of the world’s most famous museums.
There’s plenty here for younger kids, and the whole family, to inspire them to love the natural world and the Dinosaurs Gallery is always a huge hit. And, of course, you’ve got to check out the 25 metre skeleton of the blue whale hanging in Hintze Hall – the kids can even see how they measure up against it!
If you visit in good weather, make sure you go into the wildlife garden and enjoy the food vans out on the grass outside the museum.
The Idol Soft Play Centre
The Abbey Leisure Centre out in Barking is home to the fab Idol Soft Play Centre that’s suitable for all kids aged up to 12.
Its two storeys of soft play include ball pools, double lane super slides and a drop slide for the older kids, as well as a special toddler area for kids under 4.
For mum and dad, there’s a café serving hot and cold drinks and snacks to enjoy while the kids play.
National Gallery Magic Carpet Storytelling
The National Gallery is another world-famous central London gallery that has a special offering for younger kids, namely Magic Carpet storytelling.
Held once a month for kids aged 2 to 5, the Magic Carpet will take your kids around some of the galleries most famous paintings and will see your storyteller weave an enthralling story around them.
Keep an eye on their website for their upcoming dates.
The Unicorn Theatre is another company dedicated to producing thought provoking, educational and entertaining theatre for children.
They organise their performances by age so you can ensure that whatever you book the kids in for is age appropriate. Previous productions include Roald Dahl’s The Twits, Anansi The Spider and Grimm Tales by Philip Pullman.
Their theatre can be found on Tooley Street near London Bridge.
Big Fish Little Fish Daytime Gigs
Big Fish Little Fish is described as a ‘family rave’ for ‘2 to 4 hour party people’. Perfect for parents who still love the thrill of clubbing but want something family friendly during the day that they can take their kids to, BFLF is definitely a day out with a difference.
Top DJs play club classics (at a much lower level than normal) alongside a licenced bar for the parents. For the under-8s, there are bubble machines, an inflatable play area, craft corner, face painting and babies only chill-out space.
Their gigs are now held all over London and the UK at large, but originally started in Brixton. Pre-walkers are free to enter although will be ticketed.
Walk or Bus through Central London
One of the best and cheapest things to do when you’re in London with a toddler is to take them on a walk or on a bus through central London to see all the sights.
Buses are one of the best forms of London’s public transport and they’re super cheap too — don’t bother with an organised bus tour unless you’ve got money to burn!
Young kids will love seeing London landmarks like Big Ben, the London Eye, Tower Bridge, St Paul’s Cathedral, London Bridge, Tate Modern and the River Thames. Maybe they’ll be able to spot the street performers outside the Royal Festival Hall or one of the best London museums, the British Museum, while you’re at it!
Gambado is a large indoor soft play centre in Chelsea that’s definitely worth visiting if you’re in London with a toddler. As well as dodgems, giant slides and the carousel, there’s an under 2s area, a role play village and sensory areas that will appeal to a large age range and different interests. The main playframe is suitable for 1 to 11 year olds.
There’s a café onsite if you get peckish during your stay and there is also the facility to book and host parties here if you want to make a real event out of it.
Under 1s are able to enter for free and there is a small charge for adult supervisors.
Looking for another location? Check out our Days Out section for more ideas.