I’ve visited San Luis Obispo several times over my lifetime and was very surprised to discover that they had a children’s museum. On my families last vacation in late March 2010 I decided to take my three kids on a visit to the museum.
The Museum is located in downtown San Luis Obispo. Admission is $8 dollars per person to get in but if you have a Triple A card, you get a dollar off each person’s admission.
I have to admit that I was impressed with the museum the moment I walked in. We have a museum in my hometown and while it is neat it is nothing like the San Luis Obispo Children’s Museum.
There are three floors to the museum. Right when you walk through the doors on the first floor, the counter to pay is on the left hand side. On the right hand side is a large statue of a hippo’s head with its mouth open, sharp looking teeth with a sign in its mouth that says “Danger I Bite!” Upon venturing further, you see an “elevator” that you go into. It has a screen inside so while you’re in it, it looks like you’re going deep down into the earth.
Straight ahead past the elevator is an area that has an African hut filled with dolls, baskets, drums and even a statue of a crocodile. Bring your camera because there are plenty of great picture opportunities. My kids loved taking a picture with their head inside the crocodile’s mouth.
Go around the corner and your kids will be blown away by all the neat stuff that they see. The walls are decorated with different murals. There is a magnet area where kids can build the magnets together and test the strength. On the other side is an area where your children can pretend that they are going on an archeological dig. They can dig to find “bones” and wear a hat and coat as they do.
The other areas on the bottom level has an art area, a motion screen where your kids can dance in front of a screen and color moves on the screen in the shapes of their movement, etc.
There is an elevator or stairs that will take you to the second floor. The second floor has tons of different areas where kids can do pretend play. There is a café, fire truck display, post office, stage, a full size police motorcycle and much more. My kids enjoyed going to the different areas and trying on clothes and pretending to be different professions in the “real world.” Again, bring your camera. I got some awesome pictures of my kids that will last a lifetime.
The third floor is for younger kids although my older kids were allowed to go with me. My five year old was in heaven because it is a room dedicated to trains. They have a train table that has several Thomas the Train pieces that kids can go into a hole into the table and get closer to the tracks while playing with them. There is also a full size train piece that kids can get into and toot the horn, etc.
We spent over an hour at the museum and it was well worth our time and money. Whenever I vacation with the kids in San Luis Obispo, I plan on taking my children here. They’re only young once.
The only downside is that you have to pay for parking on the street as all the areas around the museum are metered parking. Make sure you have plenty of change on hand and watch the time as you’re inside the museum.
The museum hours are 10 AM to 3 PM Tuesday through Friday, 10 AM to 5 PM on Saturday and 1 PM to 5 PM on Sundays. They are closed on Mondays.
The San Luis Obispo Children’s Museum is located at 1010 Nipomo Street, San Luis Obispo, CA 93401-3870 and their phone number is (805) 544-5437.