Fort Langley National Historic Site doesn't sound all that enticing to begin with, but it's great. They've got the balance between education and entertainment just right.
First, though, my top tip - don't go on an off-season week day. If it's winter, during school term, go on a weekend. There'll be much more going on in terms of demonstrations and talks. Also, it's best to go when it's not raining (!) because there's lots of great stuff outside and you have to walk outdoors between displays.
We took an outdoorsman and frontier history fan; and a three year old. One wanted to glean as much fascinating information as possible; the other wanted to run and jump. It worked out pretty well, but we did have to take turns with the run-and-jumper so as not to miss out on too much interesting stuff. She liked walking on the bastions and running across the big lawn; trying on bonnets and voyageur hats; and playing with an old-fashioned doll.
The staff are quite incredibly knowledgeable - they seem to know the answer to every question you can think of, no matter how detailed. The demonstrations we saw included cooperage - how to make a barrel - and blacksmithing. Both were pitch-perfect in terms of keeping a diverse audience interested and engaged.
What I loved was that you could touch things, pick things up, feel things and play with things - so much less stressful than the usual museum visit with a small person. It's also very photogenic and the attention to detail in the reconstructions is wonderful. I'm quite excited at the thought that my daughter will probably take school trips here when she's older.
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