2 Tips that Get You Through the Children’s Museum in Seattle


I had a Top 10 Reasons to Love the Children’s Museum post lined up for today. The problem is I don’t really love the place. It’s not for me. It’s all for Dek.

Now don’t misunderstand me. There is nothing wrong with the Children’s Museum. It’s a fantastic institution that gets kids imaginations going in ways I just can’t facilitate at home.

Children s Museum SeattleDek could give you a list of 50 reasons why the museum is the most spectacular place he has ever been; the fire truck, water pool and hammers would be at the top of his list. Everything is his size and ready for him to play with. Nothing is off limits. What could be better?

Well, what about me?

Yes, I know I am supposed to be overjoyed by the mere sight of my son’s smile as he discovers something new. And I am. Nothing makes me happier than that kid of mine figuring out how a ball can go in one side of a tube and make it’s way to the other. The look of pure fascination as he flips the switch on a miniature Metro Seattle bus makes my heart sing. His mind is opening and he is learning.

These are all good things, but to be honest, I get a little bored. So I don’t go for the toys; I go for my own (selfish?) reasons.

Tip #1 : Friends

I won’t go to a kid’s museum without at least one adult friend. If we are lucky enough to be able to herd our children in the same direction, maybe, just maybe, we can sneak in a little adult conversation. We pack ourselves a nice lunch and plop down on a bench. After we get the kids settled in with a sandwich, I can turn to my friend and say “how’s it going?” Each of us has about 120 seconds to catch the other up on the past week, month, year, before the kids are ready to bounce through the next exhibit. 

Take a walk through a home in Kobe, Japan

Tip #2 : Global Village

Tucked into the back corner of the Children’s Museum is a little safe haven of sanity for a parent. The Global Village transports me back to my comfort zone…travel. I’m still tripping over toddlers, usually it’s my own, but I get to pretend I’ve been transported to a foreign land. Dek can drum outside a house in Ghana. I can stroll up to the sushi counter and let Dek serve me a meal in Kobe, Japan. I’m not sure I’m quite ready to hop on the back of a scooter and let him peddle me away into the Philippines. Maybe once his feet can touch the peddles I’ll revisit that one.

Global Village- Kobe, Japan

Saddle up to the sushi bar for a quick bite with the kids

Join the drum circle in Ghana

Children s Museum

Peddle through the Philippines

I guess what I’m trying to say is the Children’s Museum might not be every parent’s idea of a good time. But just like I make Dek find something he loves at every sight we visit, I can return the favor and find something that will keep my sanity somewhat in tact until it is time to pack up and head home for nap time.

As a family of travelers, we all have to take a turn doing an activity we may not be into 100 percent. I love my boys and will always do things that make them happy. After all, we each get a vote. Good thing I’m the mom though; I get five extra on each trip.

Enter the land of the rising sun in the Global Village at the Children’s Museum, Seattle

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Showing 15 comments
  • Andi at The Particular Traveler

    Haha! I am SO with you on children’s museums. The two times I’ve been to the one here in Salt Lake City, it’s been a complete madhouse (fun, I’m sure, for the kiddos but my own personal idea of hell!) Dek looks like he’s having a blast, and the Global Village is very cool.

    My best tips for surviving children’s attractions are to go at off-peak hours. And do some deep breathing. 🙂

    • © Keryn Means/ walkingon travels

      It was definitely NOT a trip I was ready for 4 weeks after giving birth. After 45 minutes I was wiped!

  • Nomadic Translator

    Aww, these pictures have brought so many memories! I remember when my parents used to take me to the children’s museum back in Puerto Rico growing up–I absolutely loved it. I would always look forward to going back

  • Average Traveller

    We’ve been to Science Center but never the Children’s museum. We’ll check it out next time for sure. Thanks!

  • Taryn

    This place sounds awesome! A few weeks ago we went to the Beijing Zoo, along with about a gazillion other people. Let’s just say that it was not my favorite day, but Charlotte loved it, which made it worth the stress and hassle. When we drag our kids to the various corners of the world without their input, sometimes we owe ’em a boring museum or overcrowded zoo.

  • Leigh

    Back in the day I’d put on my happy face and enjoy the company of my husband if we were somewhere more child oriented. Your son looks like he wouldn’t want to leave the place.

  • Allison

    This article resonated with me because I think most parents have found themselves in this situation. I always get a little ruffled when I have to pay admission to follow my children around and then feel like we have to stay as long as possible to get our money’s worth.

    However, I am invested in my children’s education and I do get some enjoyment from seeing them learn and engage in a fun way. Now that my daughter is in school, I feel like I am already reaping the rewards of nurturing her love of learning, and it’s early yet.

    In the meantime, I agree that taking a friend is more fun. I also carry something to read in my purse. I don’t always get a chance to get into it, but knowing it is there makes me feel better. When we get home from one of these trips, it’s my turn to do what I want to do.

  • Lisa

    Children’s Museums are best in small doses! I think my days of going to them are behind me though – we stopped at the one in Ottawa a couple of weeks ago and Emma sped through it in record time. It is a great children’s museum though – it is completely centred around travel. You get a passport on your way in and then get it stamped at the various stations as you travel the world.

    • © Keryn Means/ walkingon travels

      I love that the Ottawa museum is centered around travel. That’s what I would be into.

  • Mom

    Having visited the Please Touch Museum here in Philly several times with you and your friends, I know, I know! And, I think your idea about having another sane adult along is a piece of sage advice! I really like the Global Village. Haven’t seen that idea before. Not many children have traveled as much as your little guy, but this is a good way to wet their appetite for future travel!

  • Nancie

    Your captcha is making me feel mathematically challenged 🙂

    I don’t have kids, but if I did, I know I would have to be supervised at a children’s museum :)…and by another adult!

    Dek certainly had fun.

  • InsideJourneys

    Love the look on Dek’s face. Pure fun. Makes me want to be a kid again. Can you believe we were all this little once?

  • Lisa

    I love the global village! Agreed it seems a great place for kids.

  • Hilarye

    Ughh I’m with you. I love that my little girl has so much fun at the museum but the one time I took her I was 3 months pregnant and just felt awful and then to top it off I got the worst cold of my life from that place so we haven’t been back yet. It’s too bad because she really has a lot of fun!

    • © Keryn Means/ walkingon travels

      Oh you cold not have paid me to go to any museum when I was 3 months pregnant with my second. I was miserable! I couldn’t even get down the street to the park half the time. One day you will take your little girls back. Just don’t forget a buddy to help you stay sane! And maybe some antibacterial hand cleanser 🙂

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