As a family, we don’t need much of an excuse to flex our York Cards (world-class museums on our doorstep that we can visit for free? Yes please). So this week we decided to head down to the Castle Museum and check out their half term Autumn Apples activities.
We’ve been to the museum so many times that I thought we’d just be able to whip through to the activities, but the little Vikings had other ideas. They might have seen it all before on previous visits, but that didn’t stop them wanting to look at everything that we passed, from the recreated period rooms to the vintage wedding dresses. Undeterred by the crowds, they enjoyed the Toy Stories exhibition, especially seeking out the objects for the teddy trail. Kirkgate, the recreated Victorian street, was a huge hit as always. Long before anyone had ever heard of Harry Potter, this re-imagined cobbled street has been working its magic on children living in and visiting York. The little Victorian shops, from the haberdashery to the toy shop and everything in between, are fascinating to visitors of all ages. And as for the sweet shop….well let’s just say that our plan to visit for free didn’t take account of the £1.60 sugar mouse budget.
We did manage to take in some of the half term activities, too. We looked at a cast iron apple peeler that was around 100 years old and watched a really interesting demonstration of how to make apple jam. We tasted it and took a recipe home. And if we aren’t too busy making jam with them, we now have an idea for something else to do with leftover apples: apple prints. There was a whole room full of children enthusiastically creating fruity masterpieces from paint to take home. If we hadn’t had to cut our visit short due to cries for lunch (sugar mice stimulate the appetite apparently), we could have tried our hand at making corn dollies too. Another great visit, with lots of new things to do. And the verdict of our little Vikings? ‘Brilliant’.
Autumn Apples – York Castle Museum – Activities from 10am to 4pm – Normal admission charges apply (York Card holders free, and children under 16 always enter for free) – Don’t forget that buggies must be left at reception, but you can borrow a baby carrier for free.