Things To Do In London In The Easter Holidays 2017

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Looking for family-friendly things to do in London in the Easter holidays? Take a look at our guide to Easter fun in the capital. From exhibitions to stage shows, craft activities and more, there's plenty going on in London while school's out.

All holidays

Sensational Butterflies is back at Natural History Museum. © The Trustees of the Natural History Museum, London

FAMILY DAYS OUT: Bored of trudging round the same old museums and parks? Try one of these seven alternative family days out in London, featuring caves, windmills and more. Or visit a budget-friendly alternative to the big attractions. Take a look at our map of where you can see animals in London — whatever the weather.

WHERE TO EAT: Finding somewhere to eat out with kids can be tricky, but these child-friendly restaurants in London offer more options than just pizza and chips. The boozer may seem like an inappropriate suggestion, but bear with us — we've rounded up the best family-friendly pubs in London. See if your local made the list. Alternatively, try out these restaurants where kids eat for free.

CULTURE VULTURES: You may think art galleries and theatres are a no-go when you've got little ones in tow, but these London theatres are great for kids shows, and these family-friendly art galleries will keep children happy — and have plenty for mum and dad too.

VELVETEEN RABBIT: We can't help thinking this one's for parents as much as it is for kids. Classic children's book The Velveteen Rabbit is adapted for the stage at Unicorn Theatre. Follow the story of the shy toy rabbit who wants to become real. Fans can also take afternoon tea with Rabbit on certain days. Age 5+. 17 March-15 April 2017

SENSATIONAL BUTTERFLIES: The Natural History Museum's annual Sensational Butterflies exhibition is back. Walk through a tropical habitat, home to species from Central and South America, Africa and Asia. Watch a butterfly emerge from its chrysalis, and find out why they're so colourful. £5.85, book ahead, 31 March-17 September 2017

ALICE IN WONDERLAND: Singing flowers and a search for the white rabbit are all part of Sutton House's Alice in Wonderland themed Easter offerings. Craft activities and an Alice photography exhibition also feature. Included in admission price, just turn up, 1-16 April

Celebrate Dear Zoo at London Zoo.

DEAR ZOO: Remember Dear Zoo? Rod Campbell's children's book is 35 years old, and London Zoo is celebrating. Follow an interactive trail around the zoo collecting stamps, take part in storytelling sessions and claim your badge — oh, and don't forget to visit London Zoo's animals while you're there. Included in zoo admission, 1-16 April

GEOMETRIC PLAYGROUND: This is a playground with a difference; kids and adults alike can get hands on with the cogs, levers and pendulums of the Geometric Playground at Artsdepot. Free, just turn up, 2-15 April 2017 (closed Good Friday)

ZIPPOS CIRCUS: The circus is in town. Zippos sets up camp in Blackheath with horse riding, motorbike daredevils, knife throwing and trapeze acts all forming part of the show. £7.50-£26, book ahead, 5-18 April

FIRE! FIRE!: Museum of London's 2016 blockbuster exhibition burns on, telling the story of the Great Fire of London — a great way to get older kids interested in the history of their city. £4-£8, book in advance, until 17 April 2017

Go on a bunny hunt at the Museum of Brands.

MOOMINS: There's interactive fun to be had for visitors of all ages at the Adventures in Moominland exhibition at Southbank Centre. Find out about how the creatures were created. £13.50-£16.50, book in advance, until August 2017. If that's not enough Moomins for you, Kew Gardens has a special three-week Moomins festival with an interactive trail through the woods and craft activities. 1-17 April.

ROBOT ZOO: Horniman Museum's exhibition, The Robot Zoo, offers an insight into the mechanisms that give animals their amazing abilities. Find out how chameleons change colour, and how grasshoppers leap so high. £7/£4, book in advance, until 29 October 2017

ART OF THE BRICK: A life-sized Batmobile made from Lego has appeared on South Bank, along with recreations of Superman, Wonder Woman and the like in the famous plastic bricks. Art of the Brick takes on DC Comics superheroes. £16.50, book ahead, until 3 September

BUNNY HIDE AND SEEK: Parents will probably have as much fun as kids looking for rabbits in the Museum of Brands Time Tunnel. From the Duracell bunny to the Nesquik rabbit, how many will you find? Included in museum admission, just turn up, 1-16 April

Saturday 1 April

The Very Hungry Caterpillar comes to the stage.

THE VERY HUNGRY CATERPILLAR: Everyone's favourite larva comes to the stage at Artsdepot in North Finchley. Eric Carle's children's book The Very Hungry Caterpillar is brought to life with the help of 75 colourful puppets — and four of Carle's other stories are told too. Aimed at age 3+. £8-£12, book ahead, 3-6 April

Sunday 2 April

KIDS' HIP HOP: Southbank Centre hosts a children's party of hip hop, funk and dance anthems, aimed at budding Lil Waynes, Missy Elliotts and their families. Age 3+. Free, 12.30pm

CHILDREN'S BOOK DAY: Celebrate International Children's Book Day at Keats House in Hampstead, where kids can make their own book, and hear well-loved children's stories being read out. Free, just turn up, 2pm-3pm

Monday 3 April

LONDON'S LAYERS: Museum of London hosts an archaeology-themed workshop for under fives and their parents — an ideal chance to get them interested in London's history and what's going on under their feet at an early age. Free, just turn up, 10.30am/1pm

Hip hop comes to Southbank Centre on Sunday.

Tuesday 4 April

SCAVENGER HUNT: Get to know Hyde Park a bit better with this family scavenger hunt. Show off your knowledge of the history of the park, collecting points and taking photos as you go. £20 per team (maximum six people), book ahead, 10.30am

EASTER STORY TIME: Egg hunts, card making and Easter stories — all with a side of chocolate treats. What more could you want at Foyles in Westfield Stratford? Free, book ahead, 2pm-3pm

Wednesday 5 April

HEDGEHOG HEROES: Get spiky at Hyde Park's hedgehog day with activities including designing a hedgehog habitat, making a hedgehog from a paper plate and taking part in a hedgehog discovery trail. Free, 11am-3pm (repeated tomorrow)

GANESHA: Celebrate all things to do with the Hindu elephant god Ganesha at Horniman Museum. Watch a musical puppet show, take a storytelling tour around the museum, and make decorations for the museum's Easter fair. Free, just turn up, 11am-3.30pm

Thursday 6 April

MYSTERY MESSAGES: Follow a trail around Forty Hall in Enfield to decipher a mystery message, and make a quill pen to write your own secret message. Ages 4-11. £4/£5, book ahead, 10.30am/12.30pm/2.30pm

THE WIGGLY WILD SHOW: Get up close to hermit crabs, giant millipedes, corn snakes and the like in The Wiggly Wild Show at Chelsea Physic Garden. Find out more about the creatures, and, if you're feeling brave, hold them. £10, book ahead, 10.30am-noon

The Wiggly Wild Show comes to Chelsea Physic Garden.

Friday 7 April

LITTLE RED HEN: Move over dinosaurs — birds are taking over at the Natural History Museum. Little Red Hen and Chicken Licken are the theme of this interactive puppet show. Free, book ahead, noon/1.30pm

Saturday 8 April

CHECKMATE: Kids who love dressing up will be enthralled by this tour/treasure hunt at the Museum of Childhood. turn yourself into a chess piece and go in search of the missing White Queen chess piece. £7 for one adult and child (additional tickets £2 each), book ahead, 11.15am/1.15pm/2.30pm

BONNET WORKSHOP: Easter wouldn't be Easter without a silly hat, so head to Foyles in Stratford for an Easter bonnet making workshop led by children's author Laura Hughes. Free, book ahead, 11am-noon

Sunday 9 April

TONGUE FU: Spoken word experts Tongue Fu put on a children-friendly show at Southbank Centre, aimed at ages 7-10. Poems, stories, songs, games and improvisation all feature in the hour-long performance. £10, book ahead, 3pm

Monday 10 April

Eagles have landed at the RAF Museum.

EAGLES AT EASTER: The eagle has landed at the RAF Museum in Hendon, as birds of prey displays take place. The event celebrates the longstanding links between the RAF and eagles. 10-13 and 18-21 April

Tuesday 11 April

NATURE EXPLORERS: 8-11 year olds can spend the day getting to know Hyde Park a little better, including looking for tadpoles in a private pond, and learning how birds build nests. £15, book ahead, 10am-3pm

RIVER THAMES DISCOVERY: Get muddy on the Thames Foreshore in Chiswick at this family workshop. Learn about the wildlife that lives along the Thames, count the birds you see — and maybe even catch a crab or two. £8/£5, book ahead, 10am

Wednesday 12 April

DISCOVERY DAY: Pond dipping, a nature trail and arts and crafts are just some of the activities on offer at Hyde Park's Spring-themed family fun day. Free, just turn up, 11am-3pm (repeated tomorrow)

Thursday 13 April

LOTIONS AND POTIONS: Take a break from all the chocolate and find out which plants are poisonous and which have healing powers at Chelsea Physic Garden. Learn how to make your own low cost remedies and take a mini medicinal garden home. Age 7+. £13, book ahead, 10.30am-2.30pm

EGG HUNT: Head to Foyles in Westfield Stratford City for an Easter egg hunt that doesn't rely on decent weather. As well as the in-store hunt, kids can make Easter cards and hear Easter themed stories. Free, book ahead, 11am-noon

NATURE EXPLORERS: Go on safari without leaving London. Horniman Museum's minibeast safari takes place on the nature trail in the museum's grounds. £3, buy tickets on the day, 11am/noon/2pm/3pm

Good Friday 14 April

It's Easter Bunny Day at Battersea Park Zoo

EASTER EGG HUNT: London's not short of Easter egg hunts this weekend but we like the sound of this offering at Forty Hall in Enfield. Keep the kids occupied with a trail around the Hall before they get their chocolate reward. £1, book ahead, 14-17 April

MAD HATTER'S TEA PARTY: Create your own Wonderland at Forty Hall's Mad Hatter's Tea Party, with craft activities, games, juice and biscuits. Ages 6-11. £10, book ahead, various timeslots

EASTER BUNNY DAY: If your little ones are excited at the thought of the Easter Bunny visiting, take them to Battersea Park Zoo where they can become the Easter Bunny themselves, making their own ears and getting whiskers painted on. £1 + entrance fee, 11am/1.30pm

Saturday 15 April

Messy Time at BFI Southbank

MESSY TIME: If your children like nothing better than making a mess, take them along to BFI Southbank where they can get stuck in making stop-motion animations. Other craft activities include a chance to make Easter eggs and Easter bunnies. £5/£4, book ahead, 11am

Easter Sunday 16 April

FAMILY DAY: Spend your Easter Sunday tracking down bunnies in the gardens of Keats House in Hampstead. Kids can also make their own carrot cone, which they can carry their chocolate prize home in. £1 donation suggested, just turn up, 1pm-4pm

THE GREAT EGG ROLL: How far can you roll an egg? Head to Lauderdale House to create and decorate your egg before taking part in the egg rolling contest. There's also an Easter egg hunt in the grounds. £8.50, book ahead, 11am

Easter Monday 17 April

A WORLD OF STORIES: Wind down the Easter holidays with a storytelling session at Horniman Museum. Hear tales of faraway places, inspired by the museum's exhibitions. Age 5+. Free, just turn up, various timeslots (also takes place on Good Friday).