By Vicky Anscombe on 21 October 2014

October half-term is coming up (it's Monday, October 27 - Friday, October 31, if you don't know the dates), and we bet you're worrying about what to do with your offspring. However, help is at hand, Londoners - here is a guide to keeping the smaller people entertained...

Free museums:

The V&A: Loved by Londoners for generations and widely-regarded as one of the world's finest art and design museums, the V&A is perfect for kids and adults alike. There are plenty of child-friendly workshops available that involve making fun, arty things that they can take home.

The Science Museum: There probably isn't a child alive that isn't enthralled by the Science Museum. Located in South Kensington, very near to the Natural History Museum. it's a place dedicated to making science fun. Look out for the A-list attractions; scientific objects chosen by the likes of Will.I.Am, Stephen Fry and James May.

The Natural History Museum: There's plenty for inquisitive kids here; look out for autumn activities and animals in the Wildlife Garden at Hedgerow Harvest, pop-up mammoths and dinosaurs workshops and get up close and personal with live creatures at the Animal Vision show.

Plays and shows:

Fantastic Mr Fox: You can't beat a bit of puppetry; based on Roald Dahl's classic kids book, the show follows a family of foxes as they run rings around a pair of fairly dim-witted farmers. It's at north London's puppet theatre, the Little Angel, until November 9.

Family Sundays at the Royal Opera House: Bear with us - this isn't as posh as it sounds. These family days out are an opportunity to explore the Royal Opera House with the family, and get stuck into some creative activities. This autumn, there'll be combat demonstrations, costume dressing up and informal performances from Royal Ballet dancers.

Three Wise Monkeys: Come to the Lyric Hammersmith for a show that'll cater well for younger children. This new show, written by Mike Kenny, follows the adventures of three cheeky monkeys.

Getting out and about:

As well as exploring London's plethora of parks and woodland spaces, there are plenty of things to do in the great outdoors around town.

The Changing of the Guard: Head to Buckingham Palace for a display of pageantry that's hard to beat. Our top tip? Get there early to find a good space to watch - try right outside Buckingham Palace, standing outside Green Park, or watching from the Victoria Memorial. If you head to The Mall, you can watch the Guards marching for much longer.

Diana Memorial Playground: Head to Kensington Gardens for a safe, fun outdoor play area for kids up to 12. There's a massive pirate ship which kids can clamber all over, and they can also climb, follow trails and explore. Of course, there are also the obligatory swings and slides, and staff are on-site at all times.

The Mudlarks Play Area at the Museum of London Docklands: Another good one for the under 12s, this play area is free and themed around Docklands life. Older/stronger kids can lift 'cargo', dig for treasure or load a clipper, while younger children can frolic with the large foam bananas or pretend to drive a DLR train.


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