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families in the city

Looking for a day out with the family? The City of London is the ideal place to come – we’ve got a host of family-friendly attractions, great events for kids of all ages, and lots of practical help too.

Pop in to the City Information Centre if you’ve got any questions, or if you’re looking for more family-friendly things to do in the wider London area.

What to see and do

Tower Bridge Exhibition tells the story of the most famous bridge in the world. Explore the Victorian engine rooms and discover how the bridge lifts – but first, head up to the towering walkways for a brilliant view over the river complete with a glass floor looking down onto the bridge below!

The City Children's Trail is a map for little ones with little legs, complete with short walking routes and activities ideal for the under-10s. Pick up a map at the City Information Centre.

Hear the roar of the crowd and feel the rush of adrenalin in the ruins of London’s Roman Amphitheatre! Located inside Guildhall Art Gallery, this is London’s only amphitheatre – there are also plenty of events when kids can get their hands on real Roman artefacts.

The Museum of London tells the story of London from prehistoric times to the present day (and even beyond that, thanks to its gallery on the future of London). Immersive and interactive displays bring London’s hectic and fascinating past to life: take a stroll in a Victorian pleasure garden, see the effect of the Great Fire of London, and even grab a look at the glistening golden Lord Mayor’s coach. The Museum also runs regular events for kids.

St Paul’s Cathedral, the world-famous icon of London, is a hit with many kids – especially its beautiful architecture, the ‘whispering gallery’ and the interactive displays.

Hold a real gold bar at the Bank of England Museum! Alongside displays on the history of money and the Bank of England itself, there are lots of special events and exhibitions for families – including recitals of the Wind in the Willows, the author of which Kenneth Grahame worked at the Bank.

The Tower of London: castle, fortress, prison, army barracks, home of the ravens and the beefeaters and site of the Crown Jewels. Fun for all the family, the Tower also holds regular exhibitions and events on top of its permanent displays.

The Barbican has a brilliant range of family-friendly events and activities, including concerts, workshops, exhibitions and even chances to explore the whole Barbican complex.

Barbican's Children's Library, in the Barbican complex, has a special collection of books, CDs and DVDs especially for kids.

Family events

Check out our latest seasonal events guide for upcoming family events.

Getting around

The City of London is great for families: there are plenty of toilets, lots of hidden alleyways to explore, handy shops on every street and beautiful parks and gardens to stop for a rest. You’ll also find it easy to make your way around with a pushchair or pram: all pavements have dropped kerbs, and there are plenty of lifts in the newer attractions. The City is also compact: at just over one Square Mile in size, it’s easy to walk around.

There are some older buildings which don’t have lifts – check the website of a specific attraction in advance if you’re bringing a pram.

The City is particularly busy with workers on Monday-Friday at around 8-9.30am, 12noon-2pm, and 5-7pm, and the streets can be full of people. If you’d prefer to visit during a quieter time, try the weekends.

Getting to the City is straightforward: there are many mainline and tube stations, and lots of bus routes that stop in the City. Check the Transport for London website for travel guidance.

Baby-changing and toilets

The City’s Community Toilet Scheme means you’re never far from a publically-accessible toilet. Need the info on the move? Pick up a paper toilet map at the City Information Centre or download the toilet finder app for Android and iPhone.

Baby-changing facilities are available in the public toilets at Eastcheap, Paternoster, Royal Exchange and Tower Hill. There are also baby-changing facilities in attractions such as the Museum of London, One New Change shopping centre and the Barbican.

City Family Arts Network

City Family Arts brings together cultural organisations across the Square Mile who provide activities for family visitors from St Paul's Cathedral to the Museum of London, London Symphony Orchestra (LSO) to Salter's Hall. Collectively these organisations produce a huge range of events every year from tours, workshops, trails, concerts, drop-ins, festivals and performances.

Check out the website which provides up to date What's On listings for families in the City.

City Family Arts is part of the national Family Arts Campaign working together to enhance the cultural and creative experiences of families.

Published:
20 April 2015
Last Modified:
21 August 2018

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