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Children are undoubtedly the most enthusiastic people out there. They have a zest for life, innate curiosity that takes them to places adults would never dream of going, and their energy levels are quite high. Especially when they sneak that extra cookie when their parent or babysitter isn’t looking. We’ve all been there.

As parents, it can sometimes be difficult to get creative and give kids new places to explore and things to do. Luckily, in addition to London having some of the greatest trails and parks in the province, there are some fantastic places to pack the kids in the car and take for an afternoon of fun. They’ll leave with amazing memories, low energy and a feeling of satisfaction. And you’ll love seeing the smiles on their faces as they play in these clean, safe and fun environments.

Neighbourhood: Old East Village 
100 Kellogg Lane (map)
http://www.thefactorylondon.ca/

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The old Kellogg Cereal Plant opened its doors 1913 in the Old East Village and became an essential part of London’s economy and culture up until 2014. Since then, it has repurposed itself into a space called 100 Kellogg.

This historic building will be the new home to various companies in different sectors; industrial, recreational, food and services, retail and more. This is an exciting time for the Old East Village as it has undergone an impressive overhaul in the past few years. No doubt the addition of businesses to 100 Kellogg will only improve the appeal of the up and coming neighbourhood.

A very significant portion of the building will be revived as the much-anticipated Factory London. Set to open in the spring of 2018, this will take the cake as not only Canada’s largest, but North America’s largest indoor adventure park! It will feature various activities to engage, entertain and push boundaries for kids and adults alike.

The Factory has acquired 160,000 sq feet of space in the building and plans to turn every square foot into endless fun for the whole family.

Likely the most anticipated part of The Factory is the high ropes course. It is mapped out by two 75 ft towers connected by a zip line with about 100 obstacles in between. These obstacles will challenge and entertain people of different skill levels. Feeling bold and brave? Take the plunge off the 70ft drop! There will always be plenty of adrenaline pumping activities for the whole family at The Factory.

Not feeling the ropes course? The 20,000 square feet dedicated to trampolines might be up your alley! From rotating arms and jousting pits to warrior courses, the trampoline zone will both entertain and challenge participants.

Little kids are certainly not forgotten about at The Factory. There is a large space dedicated just to them. They are free to roam upon the climbing zones, crawl through the tubes, zoom down the slides and putter about in the soft play area. An impressive feature of The Factory is the addition of wristbands for every person. This means parents can allow their children to roam free without ever worrying about where they are. Maximises the fun everyone can have!

Of course, it wouldn’t be an adventure park without an arcade! They have dedicated over 4,000 square feet of immersive arcade entertainment into the building. People of all ages can enjoy these games in competition with friends, or attempt to beat the high scores! The best part is these are redemption games which allow you to hand in your tickets for an awesome prize at the end of your session.

From virtual reality and escape rooms to go-karting and laser tag, The Factory will impress kids and adults alike. Although the finishing touches are still being made (as of April 2018), we do not doubt that this will become an instant hit for the whole family!

Neighbourhood: Westmount
3198 Wonderland Road South (map)
http://www.adventuresonwonderland.ca/

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Adventure’s on Wonderland is London’s largest indoor playground explicitly geared for kids aged twelve and under. Its name pays homage to the children’s adventure fiction that’s as wildly animated as this indoor playground. The play on words also alludes to the location of the facility which falls on Wonderland Road South just past Southdale Road W. While it is outside of the city centre, its proximity to major arteries in London allows easy access from anywhere in the city.

There are various zones in Adventures on Wonderland that cater to different ages and interests. The facility is home to London’s most extensive soft play structure. Here, children can challenge themselves in the obstacle course, make their way through the multi-level tunnels, take a dive and get lost in the ball bins and zoom down the slides! They can even channel their inner spider-monkey with the web climb. There are four levels of fun in this jungle climber and kids are guaranteed to find something that’ll entertain them.

The wee ones who aren’t quite agile enough to tackle the soft play structure are not forgotten. Children aged 5 and under have access to Wee One’s Adventure World. This designated area is ideal for the curious toddler who loves to explore. They can safely enjoy slides, interactive toys, games, a submarine to play in and a separate ball-bin.

Toddler’s also have designated access to the Play Village. Here, they can let their imagination run wild in a next-level game of house!

What’s better than a classic game of tag? Laser tag of course! Children who stand 40″ and taller can access the Laser Tag Adventure Maze! Here they can engage in friendly competition, get some exercise running around and zap their friends one by one.

No children’s facility would be complete without a designated zone for gaming. Adventure’s on Wonderland offers various games such as air hockey, sports and video options and redemption games that allow the kids to win prizes when they’re all played out!

Adventure’s on Wonderland has become the go to destination for field-trips and family fun afternoons.

Neighbourhood: Oxford Park
720 Proudfoot Lane (map)
http://fleetwayfun.com/

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Fleetway is one of those classic London destinations that every kid grew up going to for birthdays and field trips. Glow-bowling followed by a sweet treat at Dairy Queen? Can’t get any better than that. Or so we thought.

While the classic London destination stuck in our minds as an awesome childhood memory, it was impossible to ignore its ageing interiors and atmosphere. It soon became an outdated and unassuming spot for bowling and billiards. Since its recent renovations, it’s become one of the most entertaining and fun destinations for kids again!

Fleetway boasts a full 44 lanes of bowling, with ten-pin and five-pin options. Their state of the art machinery and extreme lighting elevates the experience. If you want to impress your kids, make sure you go to glow-bowling, they will be extra entertained by the black light effects and it’ll make the experience even better!

One of the newer additions to Fleetway is their 7,000 square foot miniature golf course! It is a full 18-holes of glow in the dark fictional characters such as pirates and fun landscapes. Perfect for a carefree date night or an afternoon out with the kids.

Fleetway’s brand new Kid’s Play Centre is a must-visit for those with children 12 and under. This playground offers five levels of fun for kids including slides, tubes, punching bags, trolley glides, toddler area and way more.

The Playdium Lite Games Room at Fleetway adds to the fun as kids and adults alike can enjoy. Filled with state of the art games and redemption prizes, kids will leave with a prize. A bonus is the game’s cards never expire once they have been purchased – simply swipe your card and the game will begin!

Fleetway wouldn’t be Fleetway without its classic Billiards Room. The large room is home to fourteen Boston Pool Tables that are kept in mint condition. Novices and experts alike will enjoy practicing their skills on the professional surfaces.

We can’t fail to mention that this Fleetway still has the beloved Dairy Queen attached to it. This was a family tradition for many when Fleetway was in its early years – and it still is now! Kids will love grabbing a Blizzard after wearing themselves out on the Play Structure or playing a few rounds of bowling.

Neighbourhood: Downtown
21 Wharnchiffe Road South (map)
https://www.londonchildrensmuseum.ca/

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Although the London Children’s Museum has lost its lustre and shine over the years, kids who visit don’t notice the outdated nature of the facility and will always have a good time. Parents will notice that the museum might be the same as when they went there as a kid, but the fond memories of the museum probably haven’t faded and it’s fun to provide your children with those same awesome memories!

This is a place children can go and unleash their inner curiosity and inquisitive nature. What sets the Children’s Museum apart from other indoor facilities is its focus on teaching rather than just entertaining. From day camps to fun afternoons, children are bound to leave learning more every time!

With ten exhibits covering different topics, there is a wide variety of things for children to do. They can learn about different dinosaurs in the dino exhibit, dig for them in the sandpit and dress up like them in the caves.

Sifton Street is an immersive child-sized neighbourhood where kids can play the ultimate game of house. They can climb up 3-storey buildings, shop in the grocery store and pretend they are real-life neighbours. This exhibit, in particular, brings children together and provides interactions and immersive experiences they may not otherwise have had.

The Science exhibit teaches children about the simple things all around us. They can learn how to plant a plant, explore the necessity of recycling and learn what it takes for a meal to be nutritious. This exhibit will surely stimulate all the children’s senses and make science fun!

Kids are like sponges and absorb so much of what they see. It is refreshing for parents to take their kids to places where their kids can actually learn and take important facts home with them. While it’s awesome to let the kids run off steam for an afternoon, the Children’s Museum has continued to be a London staple because of its educational aspects! We are looking forward to the impending move and improvement of the Children’s Museum. It has captivated its patrons for years now, and it will only get better with future plans!

Where do you take your kids on a rainy afternoon? We’d love to hear about any other hidden gems in the city that are safe, affordable and fun! Let us know on any of our social media accounts linked below. Don’t forget to comment, like and share!

Neighbourhood: Argyle
2469 Avaition Lane (map)
http://www.locomotiveespresso.com/

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For those with tiny tots looking for a safe space to take their kids for the afternoon, Play Away is the perfect spot. The only downfall to this indoor play centre is its location. It is located east of Fanshawe College right by the London International Airport.

While this is a pretty far drive in comparison to other play areas, it’s a no-frills facility that dedicates itself to being clean and providing kids with a ton of fun! They even offer deals for those who are flying in and out of the city. They market it as a perfect spot to let kids tire themselves out so they can sleep on a long flight. For anyone who’s dealt with a crying kid on a flight, they’ll understand how important it is for them to fall asleep in the air.

Play Away is a socks-only facility that doesn’t allow outside food and drinks. Kids will find no shortage of fun on the 3-storey play structure and indoor jumping pillow. There is a safe racetrack and a designated area for toddlers. This ensures no children get hurt and are always safe while at play! A soft block area and fitness and dancing studio are also available for kids to utilise.

Various party packages are offered at Play Away. They even offer party packages that can host up to 90 people! While they will only cater food for 30 people, the option is there to pre-order food for up to 90 guests. These are your classic birthdays that allow the kids to run around and enjoy each other’s company.

A unique party they offer is their private waffle party which includes waffles, whipped cream and toppings for the kids and is available on the weekends from 8am-10am. With some parties at Play Away, parents get to take home a GoPro birthday video where the guest of honour is the star of the show! This is a modern take on the classic birthday party video cameras we have stashed in our storage rooms.