Monday, May 6, 2013

Top Museums in Metro Manila for Kids

My nine-year old sister, Carina, had to forgo her summer classes so she could visit us here in Manila. And while staying with me, I didn't want to pass up the opportunity to let her explore what the city could offer. Since she loves both History and Science, I thought of bringing her to some of the best museums around the metro. Along with Angel, we spent two Saturday afternoons digging on the wealth of information at The Mind Museum, Museo Pambata (Children’s Museum), and the National Museum. 

Besides  the National Museum, it was my first time visiting the other two so I was as excited as she was.  I've always wanted to do museum-hopping, and there was no better way to do it than tagging along my ever-inquisitive little sister.  It turned out to be a good bonding time for us!

The Mind Museum

Carina raved over the many science-based exhibits inside the museum - from the hair-raising static ball,  the large table of elements, the planets and constellations shown on 3D movies, the giant T-Rex, human evolution, and  even the outdoor playground.  

We had full three hours exploring the museum. Upon entrance, we were welcomed by a robot named Aedi. I wasn't quite impressed at first, but he was good. The museum has almost 250 interactive exhibits in their five galleries: Life, Atom, Earth, Universe, and Technology, and we spent a good deal of time in each. I especially liked the 3D film shown in the Space Shell, a dome where the story of the universe is shown and the film was narrated by no less than Robert Redford! Also in the Earth Gallery and a must-see is the “Ang Simula,” a Filipino-made film depicting the history of the universe and relating it to our own Filipino history.

What I liked most about this museum is that it’s very interactive and cool. We got to touch and even got our hands “dirty” trying out some of the exhibits. Angel got his taste of the first printing press invented by Johannes Gutenberg (1440). He placed a piece of paper, pressed it in the wooden form, and rolled an ink over the block of letters. And wooooop, we got our own Gutenberg print! 

We also enjoyed the educational outdoor playground called Science in the Park. It has the usual playground facilities, just with the touch of science in it.

Although the entrance fees come in hefty price, overall the experience inside this world-class science museum was worth it. 

Just a heads up to all children going, don’t leave your school IDs, otherwise you will have to pay the full price (just like what we did for Carina).

Museum Hours:
Tuesdays- Sundays (closed Mondays)
Additional time slots on Saturdays 6pm-9pm

Entrance Fees:
Adults -P600
*Children and Students (up to college)-P450
Public School students (up to college) -P150
Teachers -P150
All Day Pass (Enter any time, no three-hour maximum)- P750
*2Feet and below are free

Location/Contact Information:
JY Campos Park, 3rd Avenue, Bonifacio Global City
909 –MIND (6463)


Giant Butanding


My monster-like pre-historic image. hehe

The Gutenberg Press

Literally hair-raising static

Interactive games

Carina with Aedi

At the Science in the Park

Museo Pambata

After our mind-stimulating visit to the Mind Museum, Carina kept prodding me to go to the Museo Pambata in Manila.  I caved in since I’ve heard really good stuff about this museum.

We were not disappointed when we got there. We were led to a historical journey dating back to the times of Manila-Acapulco Galleon Trade, to the use of Tranvia along Escolta, to the display of antique household items and traditional dresses during the Spanish Era.

Also on display are artworks, musical instruments, and huge exhibits of the parts of the human body, jungle area, writer’s corner and the fun market complete with “panaderia”, pharmacy and barber shop.  

 One of the interesting things in the museum is the Moon Rock displayed in the 2nd floor. It is an authentic rock from the moon, loaned to Museo Pambata  by NASA (National Aeronautics and Space Administration).

I recommend parents visiting this place with their kids! It’s informative, interactive and entertaining.

Museum Hours:
8am-5pm (Tuesdays to Saturdays)
1pm-5pm (Sunday)
Closed on Mondays

Entrance Fee:
Adult and children - P100

Location/Contact Information:
Museo Pambata Foundation Inc.
Roxas Boulevard cor. South Drive, Manila (near the US Embassy)
523-1797/98, 536-0595


The museum entrance

The museum is housed in the historic Elks Club Building

Spanish Era traditional dresses

The Meralco Tranvia

Binondo Church

La Puerto del Sol was the only department store then in Manila, located at Escolta St.

old household items on display

A painting showing the traditional Filipino games

Inside a Barber Shop

A rock from the Moon

National Museum

An alternative way to learning and appreciating our own heritage and culture is through visiting our museums.  And the National Museum is a must-visit for everyone.  Upon entrance at the historic Old Legislative Building, I was impressed by the massive and intricately designed Neoclassical columns. It gave me a feel of how aesthetically and artistically inclined our old heritage buildings are (something that is almost lost nowadays).

The main gallery near the entrance holds one of the most important pieces in the museum – the amazing Spolarium. One of the volunteers informed us that it took 8 months for Juan Luna to complete the masterpiece.

Other galleries hold important artworks including paintings and sculptures by no less than our own art masters including Jose Rizal, Felix Resurreccion Hidalgo, Guillermo Tolentino, Fernando Amorsolo, among others. One of the interesting galleries in the 2nd floor display bones from pre-historic times to present.

Museum Hours:
10am-5pm (Tuesdays to Sundays)

Entrance Fees:
Adult - P150
Senior Citizen- P120
Student - P50
Admission is FREE on SUNDAYs

Padre Burgos Drive, City of Manila (near Luneta Park and Intramuros)


The columns at the entrance 

The Spoliarium by Juan Luna (1884)

An old retablo

Dear Child by Simon Flores

Juan Luna

Portrait of a Gentleman and Portrait of a Lady by Guillermo Tolentino

Carina and Jose Rizal

Sculptures by Jose Rizal

the intricately designed ceiling 

The old legislative hall


  1. Buti pa si Eena nakapunta na 3, ako sa museong pambata pa lang. haha

    1. uu eena ilang taon pa ikaw....ilang taon ka na nga?! hihi! hihi! =)))

    2. Yeeee! 1 araw na lang, Jollibee na naman! :D

    3. JOLLIBEE!!! =D

      eh yung pizza, kailan kaya?! o_O

    4. dapat alerto ka lagi. makakatanggap ka ng text one of these days. hehehe

    5. Ehem.. Gifts po! Ehem.. :)))

  2. Replies
    1. daming exposure! bongga! =D

    2. Hindi ko nga din alam kung bakit eh. :-P

    3. Salamat sa pagsama, Anchi! haha Congrats, natagalan mo pangungulit ni Eena. :D

    4. Okay naman kaming dalawa. Next time kami na lang dalawa ang mag museum hopping. :-P

  3. Very nice! I will bring my nephews to these places. Than ks for making this list. :)

  4. Hi Ms. Che! Thank you so much for including Museo Pambata in this list. We're glad you had a great time at our museum.

    I posted this on Museo Pambata's Facebook page ( We hope you visit us again!

    -- Jiana
    Communications Assistant
    Museo Pambata

    1. You're welcome, Jiana! We enjoyed Museo Pambata, and I do hope a lot more people can have the same experience we had there. Keep up the good work! Thanks for sharing this post! :)


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