Warm up in Charlotte's only indoor rainforest
Family in town? Looking for a way to get out of the house and show off the best of Charlotte? Discovery Place Science has the answer for a full day of family fun that will delight everyone in your crew – from your toddler who is just starting to explore to grandparents who have seen it all.
After you get the kids secured in the car, make your plans to head out for a fun-filled family day at Discovery Place Science. Use these tips below to plan your daylong adventure.
Give each age group some time to explore alone. Big kids and little kids can have different interests. Start your day by letting each explore what best suits them. Your little ones will enjoy KidScience (on Level 1) where they can splash in the water table, light up the pegboard, build with giant blocks or experiment with wind. Meanwhile, the older set can head up to Thinker Space (on Level 3) to discover new skills like woodworking, sewing and soldering. And, if they ever wanted to try a laser cutter or 3D printer, this is the place to do it.
The whole family will love the Museum’s wildlife. Animals are for everyone, and Discovery Place Science has a wide collection of species that call the Museum home. Stroll through the aquarium, marveling at the moon jellies, ogling the octopus or finding and naming “Nemo” in the coral reef tank. Spend some time in Explore More Life where a Museum educator can help you get to know sea life in the Touch Tank. Finish your walk on the wild side by exploring the three-story Rainforest and its many inhabitants – a welcome green respite in the urban jungle. Don’t forget to let the kids (and maybe the parents too!) test the rope bridge.
Take a break and have lunch together in Curio City Kitchen. The Museum’s café, managed by Something Classic, offers healthy snacks and lunch in a fast-casual setting. Place your order and then get the family settled into a bright yellow booth while your lunch is prepared.
Check out the daily schedule and make plans to see a live show. Shows run throughout the day, so while you are sitting, pull out your phone and check the mobile calendar. Experience an explosion. Chill out with chemistry or fuel up with fire. Shows change throughout the year so check the daily schedule on your phone or on the screens located throughout the Museum.
Build a monument together. – Put your hands together and build a family monument in Project Build. Whether you want to build the Taj Mahal, the tallest tower or an elaborate bridge, Build It! Blocks are unit-size pieces versatile enough to construct whatever your imagination dreams. In the end, let your little ones cheer as they bulldoze it down… or if you can, let it stand for other families to admire.
Don’t forget photo ops! Be sure to take some photos of your day as keepsakes and posts to Instagram. Everyone in your family can hop on the bed of nails for a photo. Let the kids burn off energy on the Big Wheel while you snap away, or try out the rope bridge in the Rainforest for a themed out picture. Remember to share your photos with us @discoveryplace!
Looking to wind down the day? Take in a film in the giant IMAX Dome Theatre, the world’s most immersive movie-going experience. Travel around the world, explore the depths of the oceans or soar above the planet. The unique IMAX Dome makes you feel like you are IN the experience. Films change throughout the year, so check the schedule to see what is playing.
A few other tips for your day…
Parking is available in the Discovery Place Parking Deck, located on 6th St., just past Church St. If you want to extend your day of family fun and there is access near you, try taking the light rail. The Seventh St. station stop is just a few blocks from the Museum.
If you have a Museum Membership, you can bring your guests at a discounted rate. This is a great and economical way to share Discovery Place Science with your family.
There are lots of restaurants within walking distance of Discovery Place Science. So, if you are looking to give the family chef a rest and end your day with a dinner out, check out the available options here.
|10:00 a.m.||Nose-to-Nose||Mackay Field Station|
|10:00 a.m.||Backyard Wilderness||IMAX Dome Theatre|
|10:15 a.m.||The Chemist||The Stage|
|10:30 a.m.||Story Time||KidScience|
|11:00 a.m.||A World Apart||Mackay Field Station|
|11:00 a.m.||Pandas||IMAX Dome Theatre|
|11:15 a.m.||Sub-Zero||The Stage|
|11:30 a.m.||Musical Tesla Coil||Discovery Theatre|
|12:00 p.m.||Backyard Wilderness||IMAX Dome Theatre|
|12:00 p.m.||Aquarium Guided Tour||Aquarium|
|12:15 p.m.||Fired Up!||The Stage|
|12:30 p.m.||Global Soundscapes||Discovery Theatre|
|1:00 p.m.||Pandas||IMAX Dome Theatre|
|1:30 p.m.||A World Apart||Mackay Field Station|
|2:00 p.m.||Ecosystem Art||N/A|
|2:00 p.m.||Backyard Wilderness||IMAX Dome Theatre|
|2:15 p.m.||Built to Win||The Stage|
|2:30 p.m.||Nose-to-Nose||Mackay Field Station|
|3:00 p.m.||Pandas||IMAX Dome Theatre|
|3:15 p.m.||Aquarium Feeding Tour||Aquarium|
|Jun 24||Ecosystem Art|
|Jun 25||Musical Tesla Coil|
|Jun 25||Animal Dissection|
|Jun 27||Make & Mingle: Engraved Wall Clock|
|Jun 28||Fishbowl: Test Your Knowledge|
|Jun 29||Superpower Dogs Member Preview|
|Jun 29||Dog Day of Summer|
|Jun 29||Disease Spread!|
|Jul 01||Constellation Dot Art|
|Jul 01||Lunar Mondays|
|Jul 01||Build a Nest|
|Jul 01||About a Door: Theatrical Presentation|
|Jul 01||Paper Rockets|
|Jul 01||DNA Extraction|
|Jul 04||American Invention Celebration|
|Jul 12||Fishbowl: One Small Step|
|Jul 16||Blast Off|
|Jul 19||Science on the Rocks: Space Camp|
|Jul 20||To the Moon and Beyond|
|Jul 24||Back to Earth|
|Jul 26||Fishbowl: Animal Encounters|
|Jul 27||The LEGO Store Takeover|
|Aug 24||Merit Badge Workshop: Engineering|
|Aug 24||Merit Badge Workshop: Energy|
|Aug 25||Merit Badge Workshop: Sustainability|
|Aug 25||Merit Badge Workshop: Chess|
|Sep 10||Tiny Tuesday|
|Sep 17||Tiny Tuesday|
|Sep 21||Merit Badge Workshop: Robotics|
|Sep 21||Merit Badge Workshop: Oceanography|
|Sep 22||Merit Badge Workshop: Space Exploration|
|Sep 24||Tiny Tuesday|
|Oct 29||National Geographic Live: The Search for Life Beyond Earth|
|Nov 02||Merit Badge Workshop: Weather|
|Nov 02||Merit Badge Workshop: Programming|
|Nov 02||Merit Badge Workshop: Pulp & Paper|
|Nov 03||Merit Badge Workshop: Chess|
|Dec 07||Merit Badge Workshop: Chemistry|
|Dec 07||Merit Badge Workshop: Electricity|
|Dec 08||Merit Badge Workshop: Sustainability|
|Dec 08||Merit Badge Workshop: Electronics|
|Jan 28||National Geographic Live: Ocean Soul|
|Mar 24||National Geographic Live: Into the Arctic Kingdom|
|Mar 24||National Geographic Live Daytime Show: Into the Arctic Kingdom|