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“Now Hear This, Parents: Best Money You'll Ever Spend” 5 of 5 bubbles
Review of Children's Museum of Indianapolis

Children's Museum of Indianapolis
Ranked #1 of 163 things to do in Indianapolis
Certificate of Excellence
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Attraction details
Owner description: The largest children's museum in the world urges children to dig in and touch everything as they explore the physical and natural sciences, history, world cultures and the arts through exciting interactive exhibits on five floors. There's also a theater with children's plays and live entertainment.
Level Contributor
108 reviews
18 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 271 helpful votes
“Now Hear This, Parents: Best Money You'll Ever Spend”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 23, 2009

The Children's Museum of Indianapolis is a godsend for anyone in the Indianapolis area. We have been members for several years now and every time we go -- which is often -- is like a new experience. The place is huge, there are endless things to do, and as many interesting things for parents as for kids. It's a full day to go through the whole thing. I have been there dozens of times and not seen everything. They continually have new exhibits that are there for a short time and always of the highest quality. It is especially great during the cold winter months when kids need some physically exhausting experiences.

I think our membership costs about $100/year, and it is the very best money we spend. The museum has kept its honor by not hitting people up for parking-- it's free and there is a large parking garage across the street with a walkway over the street. Food is a little pricey, but not nauseatingly so. The best thing (as opposed to the psychopaths at the Indianapolis Zoo) is that they let you bring in your own food and even provide a large eating area specifically for this.

There is engaging stuff to do from babies to teens. For those of us in Indy, we are blessed to have this place. If you have kids and are visiting Naptown, you are missing it if you don't carve out time to go here. If you live in or near Indy, have kids, and don't have a membership and could afford one, well, you're just a blithering idiot.

4 Thank HonkHonk
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Auburn, Illinois
Level Contributor
15 reviews
4 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 11 helpful votes
“What a BLAST!”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed January 11, 2009

Our visit to the Museum was actually in April 2008, so I daresay I'm a bit late in making my review, but I assure you - my opinions are the same! We took our 2 year old to Indy expressly to visit the Children's Museum, as they were having an exhibit featuring Curious George (a favorite in our house). I was a bit apprehensive before we arrived that the only thing that would draw her attention would be 'monkey George' and the Toddler Area. Boy, was I wrong. While I'm sure she missed the point of the river - directional room size waterway, she had a ball sailing her boat around the entire circut and following it along the way. Older children were kind to her and showed her how to do the pool ball kinetic machine, and she showed her ingenuity in the factory/blocks discovery area.

Four floors of fun - I assure you. I would say children up to about age 10 would really enjoy the experience the most - and clearly as young as 2.

The toddler area was inviting, and as it wasn't our first stop in the Museum (we went all the way to the top and worked our way down) It included a soft play area for those even younger than ours, several playmat type areas and a real (small) Caterpillar bulldozer to sit in. All in all, by this time (nearliy three years old) our daughter would be bored there with all the other options.

4th Floor - included the pool ball kinetic machine, really fascinating to play and watch, even my hubby was engrossed. Also the waterway learning area. This level also included a science area which was more for older kids - indigenous species, watershed areas, etc. There seemed to be a presentation on fossils or some such thing going on as well that older children were participating in. Also a 'worm tunnel' climber and slide that daddy had to investigate with darling daugher as well.

There is a working carousel, which costs an extra dollar, I think, and was well worth it - authentic old fashioned horses etc. A fun house mirror maze, many large-size games (Connect 4, Plinko type).

There was a dollhouse section that did not keep our toddler's interest, naturally, but older girls and moms alike will love the miniatures (especially if you are like me and had a real dollhouse with scale furniture when you were little).

The Curious George exhibit was incredibly crowded (naturally) but was well-done. I think our daughter did the rocket slide 87 million times. She would never have left, given the choice, despite the congestion of other families/children.

The slide from the 2nd floor to ground level was fun. We probablyi would have done that twice if we weren't actually trying to leave. The cafe downstairs offered box lunch type items, along with hot meals - chicken strips, burgers, grilled cheese I believe, etc along with grown up salads and sandwiches. As par for museum food - a bit pricey, but not so that we felt robbed to eat there.

I'm sure I've missed other details, but all in all a fantastic day - made for one pooped 2 year old, but I've raved about the museum to anyone who will listen since then. A grand day for our family.

4 Thank carotgirl
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Level Contributor
3 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 1 helpful vote
“A Must See in Indianapolis!”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed July 29, 2008

This museum has something for every age and it is really difficult to explore every detail in one day. Also, one can experience a wide range of emotions from being amazed to laughing to even being saddened (e.g. the Anne Frank exhibit). Also, the staff is welcoming and ready to help.

Thank TerrenceMM
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Indianapolis, IN
Level Contributor
112 reviews
10 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 40 helpful votes
“Fun for all ages”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed July 28, 2008

This museum is truly special. There is SO much to see and do, and exhibits are always changing. Exhibits are exciting, interactive, and (don't tell the kids) educational. My husband and I went (yes, 2 adults) on a random day off from work. We were there a couple hours and basically just walked through the museum. We didn't stop to browse a whole lot, but if you did, you could be there a long time!

If you are a local, I recommend the museum membership, esp. if you have kids. The museum is so big, I would think young kids would get tired out after hardly seeing anything. Memberships allow you to come and go without feeling like you are wasting an entrance fee. For visitors, plan to spend all day here and take breaks as needed. There's a cafeteria but also a place you can lock up your own lunch, etc. Take your time and be selective about what you and/or your kids want to see (dinosaurs? Science stuff? rock climing wall? planetarium) and take the time in those exhibits to make the most of it.

Above all, relax and have fun! Watch the wonder light up on the children's faces (regardless of the age)!

Thank slburton3
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Miamisburg, Ohio
Level Contributor
12 reviews
3 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
“This is a huge museum with plenty to do.”
5 of 5 bubbles Reviewed July 7, 2008

This museum is almost overwhelming it has much to do. It is four floors of fun for the whole family. The lower floors are for special exhibits and the upper floors were more for permanent exhibits and there are several play areas on the upper floors for younger kids. Playscape is an area for kids 5 and under and there is a limit to the number of people allowed in so, while you might have to wait a short time to get in it is a nice area for younger kids to enjoy the museum.

Thank taulbmi
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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