Sunday, October 13, 2013

Great Things to do in Barcelona for FREE - CosmoCaixa Science Museum

It's been yonks since I got a free museum up on the blog, so no time like the present. Continuing on from my little series of great things to do for free in the city, the Cosmo Caixa is a worthy and late addition.

It's basically the city science museum, and is free for everyone on the first Sunday of each month (and when it's not, it's a measly 4 € for adults and kids up to 16 are free which is a bargain). It's located up in the hills at the back of the city, at the foot of Tibidabo, which is a bit out of the way, but there are excellent links via public transport. We went in the car, and found a parking space no problem outside for free. You know this place means business, when you have these two guys waiting for you at the information desk!

Newton's laws, fossils, evolution, a temporary exhibition about Micro-life - basically looking at things through microscopes and there were fun interactive things to play with for the kids. This temporary space changes throughout the year, so you can always go back and see something new. There's clearly far too many things for me to explain about the contents of the museum, so I took a few snaps on my phone to share. They kind of speak for themselves:

Jack and Chewy showing off the spider collection (there are some real ones in the museum, too).

A massive tree is the main feature as you wind down the stairs to level -5, and all along the way are fossils and explanations of evolution, nature's shapes, etc.
Apparently, this good looking specimen was laughing, as she was re-tracing the steps of a bigger animal or something. Scary.
Look what I caught?!

Ah, now this one needs a bit of explaining. The image below is unmistakable, right? Even my 6 year old got it. Cool, but the image is actually made up of a load of plastic flies all stuck together like so. When you walk past it up close it just looks like a load of flies.

Always wanted one of these when I was a kid.

The super cool "flooded forest" is a big attraction, and is at one end of the museum. It's really well done, with tanks on the outside as you can see, and all sorts of sizes of fish inside. Like this huge guy.

 We didn't even see a 1/4 of the things in the museum.

One of the main things to say about the CosmoCaixa is that it's bloody huge. There's tons of things to do and explore, planetariums, touching sessions with reptiles, guided tours, and the very cool "bosque inundado"  - like a life-like model of a rain forest with loads of trees, animals, creepie crawlies and it even rains every 15 minutes, like a real rain forest! On normal paying days, you have to buy tickets for the "extra" things, and they apparently sell out fairly fast, so if you do go, make sure you know to get in there early - although there's so much to see even if you miss out on that. Below is a picture of the sprinklers, making it "rain".

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