Six science museums

  • 29 August 2012

From interactive flight simulators to the world's most famous apple tree, we've picked six perfect days out for budding Brunels.

1. Science Museum, London
50% off exhibitions with National Art Pass

From its origins in the Great Exhibition of 1851 to its space-age displays today, the range and scope of the Science Museum is sure to hold something of interest for everyone. With over 800 interactive exhibits this modern Victorian institution is a fantastic day out for the family.

2. MOSI (Museum of Science & Industry), Manchester
50% off exhibitions with National Art Pass

Based on the site of Manchester’s historic Liverpool Road Street Station, MOSI is situated at the heart of Northern industry. The museum's exhibits span a wide range of scientific endeavours, with highlights including a permanent exhibition on electricity and the spectacular air and space gallery.

3. Bletchley Park, Buckinghamshire
50% off entry with National Art Pass

When future historians look back on the digital age, they'll trace its origins to this modest estate in the home counties. Home to Britain's codebreakers during World War II, Bletchley Park was the birthplace of the modern computer, and recently opened a permanent exhibition exploring the life and work of its inventor, Alan Turing.

4. Enginuity, Shropshire
Free entry with National Art Pass

Ironbridge Gorge was the site of two key events in the industrial revolution: it was there that the modern technique of iron smelting was invented, and the namesake cast-iron bridge spanning the valley was the first of its type. Enginuity gives visitors hands-on experience of industrial technology, from locomotives to robotic arms.

5. Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew, Surrey
Standard entry charge

Not content with being one of Britain's most beautiful gardens, Kew is also a global centre for scientific research. See a plant's DNA barcode, explore the mysteries of the coffee family, or simply immerse yourself in a living museum of almost 200,000 specimens.

6. Woolsthorpe Manor, Lincolnshire
Free entry with National Art Pass

Before Isaac Newton stood on the shoulders of giants, he looked from his bedroom window at Woolsthorpe at the apple tree that would inspire his greatest discovery. Today, Newton's birthplace is furnished as it would have been in his youth, and aspiring scientists can recreate the great thinker's experiments at the Science Discovery Centre.

Tags: What to seeMuseums and galleriesGreat days out