Superb interactive museum experience for young children
Nijntje is derived from the Dutch word for rabbit ‘konijn’ but is more commonly known as Miffy.
The Nijntje museum or Miffy Museum can be found in the heart of Utrecht‘s museum quarter and is directly opposite the Centraal Museum where you can discover more about the creator of Miffy, Dick Bruna.
The Nijntje museum is the perfect example of an attraction that has been designed with its young audience in mind. Dick Bruna, the author of the Miffy books himself said, ‘I create a world that children fill with their own imagination’ as you will soon discover for yourself.
Children are invited to explore 10 different themed rooms which focus on everyday experiences set in the world of Miffy and friends. The intention of this museum is centered around engaging young children through interaction and exploration using the curiosity of a child’s imagination to make sense of the world around them. Each and every exhibit area provides a hands-on approach whether it be in the puppet theatre, discovering Miffy’s home and carrying out daily chores, visiting the zoo or exploring how a museum works whilst creating their own masterpieces for display. There is no specific way to approach the miniature worlds created here but to simply allow your children to do so in their own way, one step at a time and be lead by them, or stand back and observe their imagination come to life.
Children who love all forms of transport could simply spend hours on the first floor of the museum where they will find that they can manually control trains, barriers, traffic lights, ride with Miffy in a self propelled bus, or even try out wooden skis.
We also really love the Miffy house where the entire home is like a doll’s house but built in toddler size. Parents will sadly not be able to participate here as you are simply too ‘big.’ However, as the house is perspex fronted you can look on as your child safely explores sitting in Miffy’s bath, cooking in the kitchen or even taking a nap in the bed, it’s even possible to hang out the washing and tend to the garden.
At the weekend there are workshops held in the art room. There is no need to book in advance for these activities, just come along and join in the fun! Every Sunday at 14h00 story telling takes place. These stories correspond with the theme that is being focused on in the workshops or with the seasons.
Carefully staggered entry times allow for the Nijntje museum not to become too crowded bearing in mind its young audience. At the entrance to the museum you will also find that there is clever and ample storage for all of that baby gear, prams etc and free lockers so that you can have your hands free to explore, yet everything remains easily accessible if you do need to attend to that nappy change.
After a busy day leading the life of Miffy and friends a refreshment break may well be needed. Step over the road into the Centraal Museum’s cafe and treat yourself to a Miffy shaped pancake to finish off a wonderful day out. This cafe has a great terrace and gardens within an enclosed area too, great for soaking up some rays and to stretch those legs.
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