Learn everything from science and nature to geology and human anatomy during a family visit to the Ontario Science Centre. The museum opened to the public in 1969. Today, its 10 large rooms contain over 600 hands-on activities and demonstrations. The center is spread over three main buildings connected by bridges, elevators and escalators for ease of getting around. Strollers and wheelchairs are available free of charge.
Start your trip at the Great Hall and look up to see David Rokeby’s Cloud, a hanging mechanical mobile. This dynamic computerized sculpture has 100 identical panels that create changing shapes. Be sure to investigate The Living Earth exhibition hall. Walk through a replica rainforest to learn about poison dart frogs and Madagascar hissing cockroaches.
Younger visitors to the Ontario Science Centre will enjoy building houses and roller coasters in the KidSpark hall. Be brave and find out how you will look 50 years from now at the Amazing Aging Machine!
The center’s Sleepover program on select spring Saturdays is ideal for families. This event includes interactive science workshops, stargazing, an OMNIMAX movie and a night of indoor camping. Book online in advance to be sure to get a spot. There is also an in-house cafeteria and gift shop.
Pay extra to watch a movie at the OMNIMAX theater. The giant wraparound screen with 44 speakers displays a variety of rotating shows, so check the center’s website before your visit.
The science museum is built on the side of a valley of the Don River, a 20-minute drive from downtown Toronto. The parking fee is relatively high, but buses stop outside the main entrance, so you can take public transportation to save money and help the environment.
Ontario Science Centre is open daily, except December 25. Enjoy slightly longer opening hours on weekends and public holidays. You can purchase combination tickets for the OMNIMAX films. Admission is cheaper for children, seniors and students. Infants aged 2 and under enter for free. Check the official website for the film and event schedules and prices.