Plants with Bite at The Calyx - The Royal Botanic Garden - Sydney - Review

Plants with Bite at The Royal Botanic Garden Sydney is the latest floral installation at The Calyx. The Calyx is the largest vertical floral wall in the southern hemisphere which was curated by the garden’s horticulturalists.

 Photo credit: @busycitykids

Photo credit: @busycitykids

The NEW Plants with Bite green wall is composed of 18,000+ plants and represents the carnivorous plant Drosera capensis the Cape Sundew. Carnivorous Plants are under threat of extinction and it has been said that among the 800 known species, 56 percent of them are under threat from habit loss, poaching and weeds.

 Photo credit: @busycitykids

Photo credit: @busycitykids

Carnivorous plants only require sun, soil and sky to survive, yet they can thrive in inhospitable environments by luring, trapping, killing and digesting insects.

 Photo credit: @busycitykids

Photo credit: @busycitykids

Visitors can see the iconic Venus flytrap at this free display as well as the ‘pitfall’, ‘flypaper’, ‘lobster-pot’ and ‘bladder’ styles of traps. Plants with Bite showcases these fascinating plants while bringing awareness to the ways in which many species are currently under threat due to habitat loss.

 Photo credit: @busycitykids

Photo credit: @busycitykids

The Plants with Bite installation was stunning and definetely worth checking out. Unlike the previous installation at The Calyx, there were only a few kids activities that were on offer for little ones this time around which was disappointing.

 Photo credit: @busycitykids

Photo credit: @busycitykids

For more ideas on what to do with the kids in Sydney, head to our blog, our daily spots list or pools & beaches or playgrounds list. And for a full list of parents rooms around Sydney, head to our parents room page.

Julian Opie and Julian Opie: Studio for Kids - National Gallery of Victoria - Melbourne - Review

A few weeks ago, Kate and her little ones visited Julian Opie: Studio for Kids at the National Gallery of Victoria (NGV). They enjoyed Julian’s individual style in both the main exhibition and the kids installation. If you’re in town, do checkout this great artist and have fun in the kids installation.

Julian Opie, one of Britain’s leading contemporary artists has been making portraits since the 1990s. Julian’s bold style sometimes has him reducing people he sees into simple shapes.

 Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

In his main exhibition self titled Julian Opie which is currently at the National Gallery of Victoria (NGV), Julian created a wide range of subjects specifically for the NGV spaces. In the central gallery, more than forty of the artist’s moving image works from 1993 to the present are on display.

 Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

 Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

julianopie_ngvmelbourne - 15.jpg

People are a key focus throughout the exhibition and Opie’s most recent works feature portraits and walking figures drawn straight from the streets of Melbourne.

 Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

He also setup a city of skyscrapers which is currently taking over Federation Court from the floor to the glass roof. You will also see carps swimming behind the waterfall facade; some stone sheep grazing in the gardens and a crowd of sculptures of people walking have been placed in the lobby.

 Photo credit @melbourneminor

Photo credit @melbourneminor

The Julian Opie: Studio for Kids also at the National Gallery of Victoria (NGV), presents an interactive exhibition for families, featuring hands-on and digital activities developed by the NGV and the artist. In this studio, Julian Opie invites children (and adults) to create a portrait in a new way. Kids can try constructing a portrait using felt shapes or create a digital self-portrait using only line and colour.

 Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Heads - The felt activity shows how just a few basic elements can come together to make a portrait. Children can also play with shape and colour to create a portrait using colourful felt pieces.

 Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

 Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

 Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Julian Opie + Me - This digital activity is inspired by Julian’s earliest work and how he used to look at himself in the mirror when he first started to draw portraits. He used to close one eye and carefully trace his reflection using a felt tip pen. Inspired by Julian’s approach, the digital setup guides children step-by-step to create their own colourful portrait in the style of the artist. Finished portraits can be shared on social media for friends and family to enjoy. Kids will also see portraits by Julian Opie around the installation which might inspire them to create their own.

 Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

 Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

For more information about Julian Opie, checkout their website. For more information about Julian Opie Studio for Kids, checkout their website.

Busy City Kids were invited at the media preview of Julian Opie and Julian Opie: Studio for Kids for the purpose of a review. Both the main exhibition and kids installation are FREE entry. All opinions & feedback are genuine & truthful. Travel and food were self funded. 

For more ideas of what to do with the kids in Melbourne, checkout our Website, our Daily Spots ListCBD Spots or Blog.

Sunnyside Up! Studio - Art Gallery of SA - Adelaide - Review

Pop into The Studio for Sunnyside Up! by local artist Lauren Simeoni and discover that yellow really isn’t very mellow. It’s shiny, full of energy, light and positivity. Discarded pieces of various materials can be reborn as wonderful wearables.

 Photo credit: @busycitykids

Photo credit: @busycitykids

Kids can choose their preferred materials and make their own wearable, a piece of art, a sculpture or anything they like really. Their work can then be exhibited in the collaborative display cabinet or they can take their piece home.  

 Photo credit: @busycitykids

Photo credit: @busycitykids

Little Miss and Little Mister really enjoyed Sunnyside Up! at the Studio, we were there for closer to two hours and created an array of things and even little Miss' grandmother made a few creatives too!

 Photo credit: @busycitykids

Photo credit: @busycitykids

 Photo credit: @busycitykids

Photo credit: @busycitykids

 Photo credit: @busycitykids

Photo credit: @busycitykids

Our tips:

  • Sunnyside Up! is open at the Art Gallery of SA daily 10am to 5pm from now until Sunday 2nd of September 2018.
  • Admission to the Studio is FREE.
  • Admission to the Art Gallery of SA is FREE except for ticketed exhibitions and events.
  • The gallery is kid and pram friendly with toilets located around the gallery.
 Photo credit: @busycitykids

Photo credit: @busycitykids

For more information and up-to-date news about Sunnyside Up! or Lauren Simeoni, head to the Art Gallery of SA website. 

For more ideas on what to do with the kids in Adelaide, head to our blog or our Adelaide daily spots lists.

South Australian Museum - Adelaide - Review

Some Museums get better with age! I may have had work drinks at the South Australian Museum back in the 2000's looking at the taxidermied animals gallery, some of which are probably still at the Museum today but one thing is for sure - we love Museums in our family. I grew up going to Museums and Galleries in Paris with my dad every weekend and I wouldn't have it any other way with my kids. The best thing is, most Museums are free to visit and if they're not, entry or membership fee pays itself in knowledge! 

 Photo credit: @busycitykids

Photo credit: @busycitykids

We loved visiting the South Australian Museum on our last trip to Adelaide. The World Mammals Gallery, the Discovery Centre, the Fossils Gallery, the Ancient Egypt Gallery, the South Australian biodiversity and Whales & Dolphins are sure to keep your little ones busy and that's not all of the Museum and the best bit is general entry is free!

 Photo credit: @busycitykids

Photo credit: @busycitykids

The South Australian Museum's Discovery Centre is a wonderful thing. Located on level 1 of the Museum, it is a place of wonder where many species are exhibited. Children can also see an impressive working beehive, live scorpions, stick insects and more!

 Photo credit: @busycitykids

Photo credit: @busycitykids

 Photo credit: @busycitykids

Photo credit: @busycitykids

Visitors at the Discovery Centre can get pretty hands-on (aka my kids - touch everything in sight ha!) and touch real fossils, minerals, rocks, animal skin and the like. Kids will love putting everything under the microscope and complete their own experiments. It was pretty impressive to watch the bees working away in the beehive, and watching them come in and out of the hive and going outside of the building. 

south_australian_museum06.jpg
 Photo credit: @busycitykids

Photo credit: @busycitykids

 Photo credit: @busycitykids

Photo credit: @busycitykids

Kids can easily spend close to an hour exploring the Discovery Centre as there are an array of things to keep them busy with and keep them exploring around the room. My little ones' favourites are all the insects species throughout the centre hung up in beautiful frames and classified in draws. 

 Photo credit: @busycitykids

Photo credit: @busycitykids

 Photo credit: @busycitykids

Photo credit: @busycitykids

The Opal Fossils Gallery has a vast range of opalised fossils from Coober Pedy and Andamooka in the State's north to the largest ammonite ever found in Australia.

 Photo credit: @busycitykids

Photo credit: @busycitykids

Other galleries include the South Australian Biodiversity Gallery. More than 12,000 individual models were hand-made to create this gallery, along with historical taxidermy specimens from the Museum’s mammals and birds collections. The Minerals and meteorites gallery has 35,000 specimens ranging in all sorts of stunning colours, shapes and sizes, some of which glow in the dark!

 Photo credit: @busycitykids

Photo credit: @busycitykids

 Photo credit: @busycitykids

Photo credit: @busycitykids

 Photo credit: @busycitykids

Photo credit: @busycitykids

 Photo credit: @busycitykids

Photo credit: @busycitykids

The Ancien Egypt Gallery would have to be on of our favourite gallery rooms. Originally established in 1939, it gives an insight into the religion, burial practices and everyday life of Ancient Egypt. The room features some of the 650 artefacts from the museum's collection, most of which are genuine pieces from Ancient Egypt, with only a few replicas and model casts.

 Photo credit: @busycitykids

Photo credit: @busycitykids

While you're there don't miss Architeuthis duxthe 11 m long model of a giant squid which is a favourite among children. The display is in an old lift shaft and extends over four floors, complete with life-size models of other creatures that inhabit the murky depths. And if you didn't catch them on your way in, make sure you checkout the Whales and Dolphins skeletons at the front of the museum next to the café. The museum also has a Megafauna gallery with large animals including mammals, birds and reptiles. Don't miss the museum's Australian Aboriginal Cultures Gallery and Pacific Cultures Gallery as both galleries include large collections of artefacts.

 Photo credit: @busycitykids

Photo credit: @busycitykids

 Photo credit: @busycitykids

Photo credit: @busycitykids

The South Australian Museum is a fantastic museum for local and interstate/overseas visitors to visit. Allocate a minimum of 2 to 3 hours if you want to soak up most of the museum's collection and if your time is limited and make sure you visit the Discovery Centre.

Our tips:

  • The South Australian Museum is located on North Terrace in the Adelaide CBD.
  • The Museum is open daily except Good Friday and Christmas Day from 10am to 5pm. Anzac Day 12pm to 5pm. 
  • The Discovery Centre is open from 11am to 4pm weekdays and 11am to 3pm weekends and public holidays. It is closed from 25 December – 1 January.
  • Admission is Free except for special exhibitions
  • The Museum is pram friendly with lifts around the museum.
  • Parking can be found across from the Museum or along the river and University of Adelaide.
  • Be aware of current tram works extension.
For more information and up-to-date events news about the South Australian Museum, head to their website.

For more ideas on what to do with the kids in Adelaide, head to our blog or our Adelaide daily spots lists.

New York! New York! for Kids at the NGV - Melbourne - Review

When New York comes to town, you come to town! Head to the National Gallery of Victoria (NGV) with the kids from now until October and experience New York! New York! The kids installation coincides with this year's Winter Masterpiece exhibition MoMA at NGV: 130 Years of Modern and Contemporary Art (our review here) and showcases New York City – home of MoMA - Museum of Modern Art in New York.

Kate and her little fun seekers headed to the media preview yesterday and loved wha the Big Apple had to offer! Thanks Kate for the gorgeous pics xo Catherine. Follow Kate on Instagram at @kateflatman.

 Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

New York! New York! invites children of all ages (and adults) to explore the sights and sounds of the Big Apple - New York! This modern installation comprises of four activity zones and a digital area where kids can take part in a quiz to test their knowledge and teach them about New York City landmarks.

 Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Two of the activity zones - City Blocks invite young children to discover Manhattan’s Uptown and Downtown and build their own miniature 3D versions of the districts using custom-designed wooden toy blocks that feature façades of New York buildings.

 Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

 Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

One of the other activity zones is the Marble Run where kids can make a marble speed across the busy city and experience the hustle and bustle of the Big Apple.

 Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

 Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

The last activity zone which kids will also love is the City Lights photo booth where you can pose in front of the iconic backdrop of New York’s city skyline.

 Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Kids can also test their knowledge about New York City landmarks in the digital installation Let’s Go to New York City! 

 Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

 Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

The exhibition also includes an immersive large-scale panoramic video projection of the New York City skyline with breakaway moments that highlight urban street life, underground subway networks, and the excitement of Broadway that kids will love watching.

 Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Kids will love New York! New York! - a great kids installation perfect for when you pop into the Melbourne CBD and perfect for the cold and rainy days this winter. 

Our tips:

  • New York! New York! is now showing at the National Gallery of Victoria (NGV) located at 180 St Kilda Road in Melbourne.
  • The NGV is open daily from 10am to 5pm.
  • Entry is free to New York! New York!
  • New York! New York! is now showing at the NGV until Sunday 7th Oct 2018.
  • The gallery is pram friendly however due to restricted space in the kids installation, you can park your pram in the pram parking bay and coats and drop any bulky belongings at the Cloak Room. 
  • Free city trams are available across the Melbourne CBD however make sure the stops you take are covered by the free program. 
 Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @kateflatman for @busycitykids

For more information on New York! New York for Kids, head to the New York! website. For more information on MoMA at NGV: 130 Years of Modern and Contemporary Art, head to the MoMA specific website.

Busy City Kids were invited to the media preview of New York! New York! for the purpose of a review. All opinions & feedback are genuine & truthful. Travel and food were self funded. 

For more ideas of what to do with the kids in Melbourne, checkout our Website, our Daily Spots ListCBD Spots or Blog.

Royal Australian Mint - Canberra - Review

We visited the Royal Australian Mint in Canberra at the end of last year and found it an interesting stop to add to our many Canberra places to visit. Opened in 1965, the Mint has produced more than fifteen billion circulating coins. It now has the capacity to produce two million coins per day and can also produce coins for other countries, along with medals, medallions, tokens and seals for private clients, both national and international.

 Photo credit: @busycitykids

Photo credit: @busycitykids

At the front desk or the shop, kids can request a Mint Activity Book and head upstairs to complete the Mint Treasure Hunt. There are a few interactive screens for kids to learn about currency and how the factory works as well as a colouring station for little ones. When we were there, there was a colour your coin competition. 

 Photo credit: @busycitykids

Photo credit: @busycitykids

 Photo credit: @busycitykids

Photo credit: @busycitykids

Visitors can wander through the national coin collection and read up on the history of currency, coinage and legal tender. They can discover the Holey Dollar and Dump, Australia's first minted coins made by a convicted forger and so much more.

 Photo credit: @busycitykids

Photo credit: @busycitykids

 Photo credit: @busycitykids

Photo credit: @busycitykids

 Photo credit: @busycitykids

Photo credit: @busycitykids

Visitors can see a working factory in action during the week and see Titan the strongest robot at the Mint. They can even wave to Titan! Titan is capable of lifting 1000 kilograms and if he's not busy he will even dance!

 Photo credit: @busycitykids

Photo credit: @busycitykids

 Photo credit: @busycitykids

Photo credit: @busycitykids

Make sure you keep the best for last - kids can mint a legal commemorative $1 coin (cost of $3 per coin) and start a collection of their own. They will love it!

 Photo credit: @busycitykids

Photo credit: @busycitykids

 Photo credit: @busycitykids

Photo credit: @busycitykids

Albeit a bit short and not hugely interactive for little ones but interesting for primary & high school kids, we did enjoy our visit at the Royal Australian Mint. The Mint is an interesting place to learn about the history of currency, coinage and legal tender. Kids will enjoy seeing the working factory, wave to Titan and even mint their very own coin! 

Our tips:

  • Royal Australian Mint is located on Denison Street in Deakin around 10 minutes from the city centre of Canberra.
  • The centre is open 8.30 am to 5 pm Mon Fri and 10 am to 4 pm Sat & Sun. Closed on Christmas Day and Good Friday.
  • Entry is FREE.
  • There is free parking outside the center.
  • There are toilets inside.
  • The center is pram friendly with a walking ramp and a lift to access the first level.
For more information on the Royal Australian Mint, head to their website.

For more ideas on what to do with the kids in Canberra, head to our blog or our Canberra daily spots lists.

Himeji Japanese Gardens - Adelaide - Review

We're heading to Adelaide soon and reminiscing on our visit late last year. One little gem we visited back in September was the Himeji Japanese Gardens located on South Terrace between Pulteney and Hutt Streets. Established in 1985 in celebration of Adelaide's sister city partnership with Himeji in Japan, the Himeji Gardens blend two classic styles: the ‘senzui’ style that displays the beauty of lakes and mountains, and the ‘kare senzui’ style that uses rocks to evoke the presence of water and oceans.

 Photo credit: @busycitykids

Photo credit: @busycitykids

This cute garden is a replica of a traditional styled Japanese garden. I say 'cute' because it is small and a quick visit however we did enjoy it! Such a peaceful setting, we found other visitors relaxing to the sounds and smells of the garden among the willows and the little stream. If your kids are anything like my wonderers, caution must be taken near the pond.

 Photo credit: @busycitykids

Photo credit: @busycitykids

 Photo credit: @busycitykids

Photo credit: @busycitykids

When we visited, rangers were planting in the 'senzui' style garden and were resetting the 'kare senzui' style dry garden with the typical sand, rocks and moss. A very calming setting and we would have loved to be able to rake the sand away and reset our minds but we watched the rangers do it instead ha!

 Photo credit: @busycitykids

Photo credit: @busycitykids

himejigardensadelaide_11.jpg

We really enjoyed the tranquil and peaceful Himeji Japanese Gardens and highly recommend you pop in when you are visiting Adelaide.

 Photo credit: @busycitykids

Photo credit: @busycitykids

Our tips:

  • The Himeji Japanese Gardens is located between Pulteney and Hutt Street near Adelaide city.
  • Admission is free.
  • There is some free parking in front of the gardens.
  • The gardens are open from 8am to 5.30pm, seven days a week except during April to September when it closes at 4.30pm on weekends and public holidays.
  • Guided tours are available via bookings.

For more ideas on what to do with the kids in Adelaide, head to our blog or our Adelaide daily spots lists.

Biennale of Sydney - SUPERPOSITION: Equilibrium & Engagement - Sydney - Review

During the school holidays, little Miss and I visited Cockatoo Island for the first time to coincide with the Biennale of Sydney SUPERPOSITION: Equilibrium & Engagement exhibition. A few ferries later and we arrived on the island and first impression - we need to come back! I didn't even step into the beautiful old buildings and warehouses, I knew that it was going to be a place full of history and with the Biennale of Sydney and some kids art activities - even better!

 Photo credit: @busycitykids

Photo credit: @busycitykids

We made our way inside the main warehouse where most of the exhibits were installed and walked through the shipping containers by Yukinori Yanagi and explored the notion of human existence and looked at our reflection in the mirrors and looked down into our endless mirror reflection at the last space of the exhibit.

 Photo credit: @busycitykids

Photo credit: @busycitykids

We then walked towards Martin Walde's time piece where every six minutes a printed sheet of paper with a date on it flies down from an elevated printer giving visitors a concept of time and the passing of years. There are quite a few other exhibits on the island however we have chosen to highlight a few of our favourites.

 Photo credit: @busycitykids

Photo credit: @busycitykids

Of course, the pièce de résistance at the Biennale of Sydney for Cockatoo Island would have to be Ai Weiwei's piece on the refugee crisis in the world. I have personally loved Ai Weiwei's work since 2015 when he launched the Andy Warhol | Ai Weiwei exhibition and the Studio Cats installation for kids exhibitions at the NGV Melbourne. I was very inspired by his talk during the media preview as he has always been an artist and activist but only since 2014-2015 has he been allowed to leave China to continue his work because of the Chinese government and freedom of speech restrictions. 

Ai’s Law of the Journey creates an imposing statement. Featuring a 60-metre-long boat crowded with hundreds of anonymous refugee figures, the work brings the monumental scale of the humanitarian crisis sharply into focus and lets us reflect on human rights.

 Photo credit: @busycitykids

Photo credit: @busycitykids

 Photo credit: @busycitykids

Photo credit: @busycitykids

Throughout our visit, I couldn't help but snap photos of the old buildings on Cockatoo Island. Now a UNESCO World Heritage Site, Cockatoo Island was once home to prisoners and convicts who were put to work there to build prison barracks, a military guardhouse, hand-carved granary silos, Fitzroy Dock and hundreds of boats before World War I. Learning about the history of this island would take another visit in my opinion as there is so much to learn however we did explore as we could on this visit.

 Photo credit: @busycitykids

Photo credit: @busycitykids

We took a break from wondering the exhibits to attend one of the school holiday art workshops run by Samantha Relihan where we added our many creations to the love message board setup while other children were taking part in building a Collaborative sculpture made from reusable products.

 Photo credit: @busycitykids

Photo credit: @busycitykids

 Photo credit: @busycitykids

Photo credit: @busycitykids

Join in the fun this Sunday 20th May from 11am to 4pm for Family Day at the Biennale of Sydney on Cockatoo Island. There will be talks, workshops, activities and performances. Head to this link for more info.
 Photo credit: @busycitykids

Photo credit: @busycitykids

 Photo credit: @busycitykids

Photo credit: @busycitykids

After some time creating our own masterpieces, we headed back to the old warehouses to continue our art journey where we saw Mit Jai Inn's work which defies conventional boundaries both physically and conceptually. Mit’s artworks often appear as hybrid objects – paintings that could be sculptures, or sculptures that incorporate painted methods. This was by far little Miss' favourite installation as she loves paint and painting.

 Photo credit: @busycitykids

Photo credit: @busycitykids

 Photo credit: @busycitykids

Photo credit: @busycitykids

Pieces from Tawatchai Puntusawasd fitted one of the old warehouse's space nicely. A Dim Night, a smaller companion piece (shown below) made from brass and nickel alloy allows the viewer to examine the sculpture in its entirety, manifesting the human striving towards knowledge. The sculpture is displayed alongside a new series of engravings on copper sheet documenting Puntusawasdi’s process.

 Photo credit: @busycitykids

Photo credit: @busycitykids

Little Miss was quite intrigued by Abraham Cruzvillegas' pieces and told me that she 'made some of these at preschool' - kids are so funny sometimes ha! I don't think her preschool work would compare to Cruzvillegas' pieces but it's cute! Cruzvillegas uses objects and repurposed materials and ensures he recognises the life and history inherent in each article.

 Photo credit: @busycitykids

Photo credit: @busycitykids

While exploring other Biennale of Sydney installations throughout Cockatoo Island, we stopped to admire some of the old buildings on the island including guards, prisoners quarters as well as the convict punishment cells. Cockatoo Island is a place rich in history and one which is great for families to visit throughout the year. We look forward to heading there during the warmer months and enjoy a wonder around the island and a picnic with friends. We really enjoyed our visit on the island for the Biennale of Sydney and highly recommend it.

 Photo credit: @busycitykids

Photo credit: @busycitykids

For more information on Cockatoo Island, head to their website.
Biennale of Sydney - SUPERPOSITION: Equilibrium & Engagement is on now until the 11th June 2018. For more information, head to their website.

For more ideas on what to do with the kids in Sydney, head to our blog, our daily spots list or pools & beaches or playgrounds list. And for a full list of parents rooms around Sydney, head to our parents room page.

Wendy's Secret Garden - Lavender Bay - Sydney - Review

In September last year, we found Wendy's Secret Garden amongst the trees and overlooking the beautiful Lavender Bay, Luna Park, the Harbour Bridge, the beauty goes on!

 Photo credit: @busycitykids - taken Sep 2017

Photo credit: @busycitykids - taken Sep 2017

The history behind Wendy's Secret Garden goes back to when Wendy and her renowned artist husband, the late Brett Whiteley, set up their family home in Lavender Bay in 1970 and lived there together for two decades. Wendy's house overlooks the big fig tree and garden.

 Photo credit: @busycitykids - taken Sep 2017

Photo credit: @busycitykids - taken Sep 2017

Following Brett's death in 1992, Wendy needed to regain some control in her life and found herself cleaning up piles of overgrown rubbish on the large land filled valley of unused railway land at the foot of her house day after the next. As Wendy cleared the site, she began creating a garden like a giant painting. Rather than being horticulturally inspired, Wendy’s gardening was driven by aesthetics, colour, form, beauty and whimsy and successful transformed this large unused land into a beautiful and tranquil place for people to visit.

After a Google find, we walked down Lavender Street, walked past Clark Park and found some steps amongst flowers and trees and made our way down. It's a cute trail for kids however be mindful some spots have steps and other spots are steep.

 Photo credit: @busycitykids - taken Sep 2017

Photo credit: @busycitykids - taken Sep 2017

 Photo credit: @busycitykids - taken Sep 2017

Photo credit: @busycitykids - taken Sep 2017

Once we made our way down to the Garden's lower ground, we wandered about looking at the treasures and the beautiful flowers.

 Photo credit: @busycitykids - taken Sep 2017

Photo credit: @busycitykids - taken Sep 2017

 Photo credit: @busycitykids - taken Sep 2017

Photo credit: @busycitykids - taken Sep 2017

 Photo credit: @busycitykids - taken Sep 2017

Photo credit: @busycitykids - taken Sep 2017

Our favourite tree in Wendy's Secret Garden was the large fig tree, such a stunning tree! I can imagine that Wendy took inspiration for the garden from this beautiful tree.

 Photo credit: @busycitykids - taken Sep 2017

Photo credit: @busycitykids - taken Sep 2017

 Photo credit: @busycitykids - taken Sep 2017

Photo credit: @busycitykids - taken Sep 2017

The view under the large fig tree is so stunning, we saw couples and friends sitting in different spots around the lower ground of the garden and under the beautiful fig tree.

 Photo credit: @busycitykids - taken Sep 2017

Photo credit: @busycitykids - taken Sep 2017

We then walked down the many steps to Lavender Day and did some more exploring and loved walking around the jetty looking for little sculptures and overlooking the stunning view.

 Photo credit: @busycitykids - taken Sep 2017

Photo credit: @busycitykids - taken Sep 2017

 Photo credit: @busycitykids - taken Sep 2017

Photo credit: @busycitykids - taken Sep 2017

 Photo credit: @busycitykids - taken Sep 2017

Photo credit: @busycitykids - taken Sep 2017

 Photo credit: @busycitykids - taken Sep 2017

Photo credit: @busycitykids - taken Sep 2017

 Photo credit: @busycitykids - taken Sep 2017

Photo credit: @busycitykids - taken Sep 2017

We then did a bit more exercise and walked back up all the stairs (no gym session was needed after this trip ha !)

 Photo credit: @busycitykids - taken Sep 2017

Photo credit: @busycitykids - taken Sep 2017

We finished our adventure walking past Wendy's beautiful secret garden and her beautiful house (cream colour house as can be seen on this photo).

 Photo credit: @busycitykids - taken Sep 2017

Photo credit: @busycitykids - taken Sep 2017

Wendy's Secret Garden is always open and free. To find the location of Wendy's Secret Garden or to find out more information about the garden, head to Wendy's Secret Garden's website.

For more ideas on what to do with the kids in Sydney, head to our blog, our daily spots list or pools & beaches or playgrounds list. And for a full list of parents rooms around Sydney, head to our parents room page.

Pollination at The Calyx - The Royal Botanic Garden - Sydney - Review

A few weeks ago, we visited the Royal Botanic Garden in Sydney after seeing a performance of Tinkerbell and the Dream Fairies. We love the gardens, it is a relaxing place to visit in the city, to wonder and to admire. It is located between the Sydney Opera and the State Library of NSW. Despite its size, It is easy to walk through the different sections of the garden like the Camellia Garden, the Herb Garden, the Oriental Garden and the Calyx our new favourite floral space.

Pollination finished in August 2018. The Calyx will reopen on the 1st of October 2018 with a new installation: Plants with Bite. More info here.

 Photo credit: @busycitykids

Photo credit: @busycitykids

We have been wanting to visit The Calyx space at the Royal Botanic Garden ever since it was established, and especially the Pollination space. We hope to visit it again soon before it closes on the 15th of August 2018 for a new setup.

 Photo credit: @busycitykids

Photo credit: @busycitykids

Pollination is the current floral display at The Calyx and it is just gorgeous and a great place to bring the kids along too. Both my kids loved looking at the flowers, the giant bee and the small bees hanging from the ceiling.

 Photo credit: @busycitykids

Photo credit: @busycitykids

The wall features a collection of plants and flowers showcasing the role colour plays in nature's magnificent act of pollination. Garden beds of vibrant coloured orchids, daisies, gardenias and lilies are set against the backdrop of the display hero - the green wall. The wall, the largest of its kind in Australia, stands at 6 metres high and spans 50 metres.

 Photo credit: @busycitykids

Photo credit: @busycitykids

 Photo credit: @busycitykids

Photo credit: @busycitykids

After a look around the gorgeous wall and floral displays, we found a little kids space by surprise and little Miss and her brother were happy exploring the little kids setup which lets children look at pieces from the garden through a microscope and insects through a magnifying glass

 Photo credit: @busycitykids

Photo credit: @busycitykids

 Photo credit: @busycitykids

Photo credit: @busycitykids

They also loved doing some puzzles and colouring in insects from the garden as well as taking a photo at the little photo booth. Tablets with pictures of flowers and insects were also available for kids to play with.

 Photo credit: @busycitykids

Photo credit: @busycitykids

The Calyx is a gorgeous place to take families and friends while exploring the Royal Botanic Garden but also a great place to have a coffee, high tea, take some photos and attend special events. Entry is free and donations are welcome.

thecalyx_rbgsydney - 6.jpg
For more information on The Calyx at the Royal Botanic Garden Sydney, head to their website.

For more ideas on what to do with the kids in Sydney, head to our blog, our daily spots list or pools & beaches or playgrounds list. And for a full list of parents rooms around Sydney, head to our parents room page.

Indieguerillas at NGA Play - Review - Canberra

At the end of December last year, we headed to Canberra for a few days. We love a Canberra visit as it's always relaxing, we can drive there, it's never too crowded and there is lots to do with kids and most of it is free!

One of our favourite spots to visit when we do is the NGA (National Gallery of Australia) and we always make some time to explore the kids space - NGA Play.

   Photo credit: @busycitykids

  Photo credit: @busycitykids

The latest kids installation at the NGA Play is from Indonesian duo Indieguerillas. This free installation takes visitors on a cultural journey through the stories of their home in Yogyakarta.

 Photo credit: @busycitykids

Photo credit: @busycitykids

Family and friends will be surrounded by colour and joy. Visitors can ride bikes to create sound and movement.

 Photo credit: @busycitykids

Photo credit: @busycitykids

Kids can colour in Indieguerillas' every so cool prints, take them home or put them up in the YEAH ROOM!

 Photo credit: @busycitykids

Photo credit: @busycitykids

They can also create their own digital avatar on provided iPads, our avatars looked quite interesting - ha!

 Photo credit: @busycitykids

Photo credit: @busycitykids

Kids can also play a fun bedroom tidying up game. Not surprising, little Miss wasn't interested, so as usual mummy had to tidy up!

 Photo credit: @busycitykids

Photo credit: @busycitykids

Indieguerillas' art is bright, colourful and kids love it!

 Photo credit: @busycitykids

Photo credit: @busycitykids

Mine loved the slide in the YEAH ROOM! A slide in a gallery - sure why not! The NGA Play is our favourite place to explore, learn and create in Canberra - always something fun to do!

 Photo credit: @busycitykids

Photo credit: @busycitykids

Kids can pin their colouring masterpieces, create their own shadow puppets and leave them as part of the display in the YEAH GALLERY.

 Photo credit: @busycitykids

Photo credit: @busycitykids

Kids can also colour the walls - yes you heard me write on walls! 

 Photo credit: @busycitykids

Photo credit: @busycitykids

Or do a quite colouring in the YEAH ROOM, might be safer ha!

 Photo credit: @busycitykids

Photo credit: @busycitykids

Indieguerillas is on now until Sunday 13 May 2018 from 10.00am – 5.00pm daily - entry is free - enjoy!

Our Tips:

  • The NGA is located in the heart of Canberra, near Parliament House, the High Court of Australia and next door to the National Portrait Gallery. You can also get to the NGA from the path around Lake Burley Griffin if you walk through the Sculpture Garden.
  • NGA Play is located near the main entrance as soon as you arrive at the NGA Gallery.
  • The gallery is open 7 days a week from 10am to 5pm except Christmas Day.
  • Entry to the NGA gallery, NGA Sculpture Park and the NGA Play is free except for special ticketed exhibitions.
  • There is underground paid parking is available via Parkes Place off King Edward Terrace. 
  • There are toilets inside including parents rooms
  • There are café spots onsite. 
  • The center is pram friendly with a walking ramp and lifts.
For more information, head to the NGA website.

To read our other Canberra reviews including our review of the NGA Sculpture Park, head to this link.

For more ideas on what to do with the kids in Canberra, head to our blog or our Canberra daily spots lists.

KaBloom Festival of Flowers - Tesselaar - Info - Melbourne

Celebrate the carnival of colour at Tesselaar’s new KaBloom - Festival of Flowers from March 30th to April 15th 2018. Held on Tesselaar’s flower farm in the magical Dandenong Ranges, KaBloom will be an explosion of colour in nature, with waves of over 1.2 million flowers in bloom across five acres of garden. Wow that's a lot of flowers for the kids to count - haha!

 Photo credit: KaBloom Festival

Photo credit: KaBloom Festival

Festivities begin with the delicious Chocomania weekend (March 30 – April 2), with a visit from the Easter Bunny, Easter egg hunts and live entertainment daily with Cheek to Cheek and the Tracey Roberts Trio.

 Photo credit: KaBloom Festival

Photo credit: KaBloom Festival

Run over two weeks, the Family Fun Days (3-6 April and 9-13 April) kick off with daily shows from The Mik Maks, Bethany Fisher and Full Circle Drumming Workshops (first week) and The Kazoos, Trash Test Dummies and Ruccis Circus School (second week). Treasure hunts, petting zoo and giant garden games will keep the little ones entertained all day.

 Photo credit: KaBloom Festival

Photo credit: KaBloom Festival

KaBloom also brings colour to a new level during Colourific Weekend (14-15 April). Browse the annual Garden & Plant Expo and enjoy live entertainment from Fused and Bollywood dancers The Naach Box. If that’s too tame you can join in on our Colour War, but make sure you wear white for maximum impact!

 Photo credit: KaBloom Festival

Photo credit: KaBloom Festival

 Photo credit: KaBloom Festival

Photo credit: KaBloom Festival

Live entertainment daily, delicious international and local food and children’s activities galore all contribute to this brand new carnival of colour. Photos below were taken last week - how beautiful are all those blooms!

 Photo credit: KaBloom Festival

Photo credit: KaBloom Festival

 Photo credit: KaBloom Festival

Photo credit: KaBloom Festival

Open every day during the festival from 10am – 5pm, entry: adults $25, concession $22 and children under 16 free. Some activities require pre booking and additional costs like tractor rides and face painting. For more info or tickets, head to the KaBloom website.

For more ideas of what to do with the kids in Melbourne, checkout our Website, our Daily Spots ListCBD Spots or Blog.

Free Kids Yoga - The Darling Quarter - Review - Sydney

Alyssa from @thekidsbookhunter visited The Darling Quarter last week to take part in the FREE Kids Yoga activity. Hunter had so much fun! Alyssa was happy to share their experience with Busy City Kids. Here's their review. Thanks so much Alyssa xo Catherine
 Photo credit: @thekidsbookhunter for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @thekidsbookhunter for @busycitykids

Looking for a fun activity to get the kids outdoors and active? Then head down to the beautiful setting of the Darling Quarter’s Northern green on Friday mornings for a FREE half hour session of Kids Yoga. 

 Photo credit: @thekidsbookhunter for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @thekidsbookhunter for @busycitykids

Designed for preschool aged children and their carers, the sessions are run by qualified yoga instructor Danielle (Dee Dee) Connor of Yoga Budz. 

 Photo credit: @thekidsbookhunter for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @thekidsbookhunter for @busycitykids

Dee Dee energetically introduces young children to various Yoga poses and movements in a fun and age appropriate way. Children’s Yoga is not only a great form of exercise and relaxation, but is also super cute to watch. Kids will love acting like animals, telling stories with their movements, and moving their bodies into a mix of serene and dynamic positions.

 Photo credit: @thekidsbookhunter for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @thekidsbookhunter for @busycitykids

There are 2 free half hour sessions running each Friday morning at 10:30am – 11:00am and 11:30am – 12:00pm. All mats are provided and no bookings are necessary. On days of poor weather sessions are held in the front foyer of Monkey Baa Theatre. 

 Photo credit: @thekidsbookhunter for @busycitykids

Photo credit: @thekidsbookhunter for @busycitykids

For more information, head to The Darling Quarter website.

For more ideas on what to do with the kids in Sydney, head to our blog, our daily spots list or pools & beaches or playgrounds list. And for a full list of parents rooms around Sydney, head to our parents room page.

NGV Triennial - Review - Melbourne

The NGV Triennial has arrived at the National Gallery of Victoria (NGV). This free and exclusive unprecedented and large-scale exhibition of international art, design and architecture is now on and it's epic! It showcases major works by more than 100 artists and designers from 32 countries across all four levels of NGV International. Thank you Kel from Melbourne Minor for these epic photos!
 Photo credit: @melbourneminor @busycitykids

Photo credit: @melbourneminor @busycitykids

Artist Xu Zhen explores Buddhist aspects of his own cultural heritage and various traditional depictions of the Buddha with a 15.8m long replica of a reclining Buddha sculpture on which he places 3D scanned and cast replicas of classical Greco-Roman, Renaissance and Neoclassical sculptures in order to break down cultural boundaries and promote cross-cultural understanding.

 Photo credit: @melbourneminor @busycitykids

Photo credit: @melbourneminor @busycitykids

Your little ones will love We Make Carpets from The Netherlands. In an Australian premiere, Dutch art collective We Make Carpets has created a spectacular exhibition for children and families in which the floors and walls of the children’s gallery will be covered in vividly colourful murals created with household objects, including kitchen sponges, Velcro squares, pegs, pool noodles and coloured rope.

 Photo credit: @melbourneminor @busycitykids

Photo credit: @melbourneminor @busycitykids

Visitors are also encouraged to add to the kaleidoscopic patterns by adding objects directly to the walls and floors of the gallery. Something tells me the kids will spend hours there!

 Photo credit: @melbourneminor @busycitykids

Photo credit: @melbourneminor @busycitykids

Yayoi Kusama's NEW participatory work invites visitors to completely cover a purpose-built apartment with 3D flowers and flower stickers! We love Yayoi Kusama's obliteration concept and this exhibit is so much fun!

 Photo credit: @melbourneminor @busycitykids

Photo credit: @melbourneminor @busycitykids

 Photo credit: @melbourneminor @busycitykids

Photo credit: @melbourneminor @busycitykids

Shift your perception of space in Pae White’s boundary-pushing installation. Love this colourful installation!

 Photo credit: @melbourneminor @busycitykids

Photo credit: @melbourneminor @busycitykids

 Photo credit: @melbourneminor @busycitykids

Photo credit: @melbourneminor @busycitykids

teamLab's interactive and immersive installation from this famous Japanese ‘ultratechnologist’ design collective has created a ‘vortex’ using a digital floor which responds as water would to the audience’s presence and movement.

 Photo credit: @melbourneminor @busycitykids

Photo credit: @melbourneminor @busycitykids

 Photo credit: @melbourneminor @busycitykids

Photo credit: @melbourneminor @busycitykids

Ron Mueck’s world-premiere installation, Mass, 2016-17 is one of twenty large-scale new artworks that have been especially commissioned by the NGV for this exhibition. Reminiscent of the catacombs in Paris, the awe-inspiring work by one of Australia’s leading sculptors has been generously supported by the Felton Bequest. The 100 hand-cast skulls, each measure 1.5m and collectively weigh approximately 5 tonnes!

 Photo credit: @melbourneminor @busycitykids

Photo credit: @melbourneminor @busycitykids

Alexandra Kehayoglou's monumental 46m2 carpet landscape titled Santa Cruz River impressively documents one of Argentina’s most contested landscapes. Take your shoes off and walk on Alexandra's beautiful landscape and don't forget to look up.

 Photo credit: @melbourneminor @busycitykids

Photo credit: @melbourneminor @busycitykids

Don't forget to pop in the NGV Garden and checkout the 2017 NGV Architecture Commission: Entitled Garden Wall by Retallack Thompson and Other Architects. The elegantly-designed structure comprises over 260 white walls clad in transparent woven mesh, which offer visitors the opportunity to rediscover NGV’s Grollo Equiset Garden. How cute is this pic from Melbourne Minor, love it!

 Photo credit: @melbourneminor @busycitykids

Photo credit: @melbourneminor @busycitykids

The NGV Triennial will be on display at NGV International from Friday 15th December 2017 to Sunday 15th April 2018. Entry is FREE.

For more information regarding the NGV Triennial, head to the NGV's dedicated website.

For more ideas of what to do with the kids in Melbourne, checkout our Website, our Daily Spots ListCBD Spots or Blog.

Summer School Holidays 2017 - Sydney

Summer School Holidays are coming up in Sydney, here's our lineup of Activities and Events - let's do this!

 Photo credit: @busycitykids - Future Park

Photo credit: @busycitykids - Future Park

  • Alphabetical Sydney: Creative Lab at the Museum of Sydney. Immerse yourself in the alphabetical world of Alphabetical Sydney. Kids can explore the wonders of our beautiful city from A to Z. Read our review here.

  • Arctic voices at Australian National Maritime Museum (ANMM) takes families on a fascinating journey to the Arctic in this new interactive exhibition opening on Thursday 14th of December. Be sure to checkout the various school holiday activities taking place too at the ANMM. Read our review here.
     
  • Brickman Awesome at the ICC Sydney Convention and Exhibition Centre. Brickman Awesome will be made up of 38 never-seen-before LEGO® models, totalling more than 1.5 million bricks and clocking up more than 4,500 hours of build-time! It will also showcase the only life-sized LEGO® Harley Davidson ever made, the largest ever LEGO® Caterpillar 797 dump truck and a full-sized LEGO® Australian saltwater crocodile, weighing over 60kgs and built using more than 40,000 LEGO® bricks! Read our info post here.
     
  • Ian Potter Children's WILD PLAY Garden at Centennial Parklands opened late October. The garden is a special place for children and their families, a beautiful little oasis amongst Centennial Parklands with a beautiful garden, a treehouse with slide, bamboo forest, mounds and a water play area. Read our review here.

  • Learn & Play! teamLab Future Park at Powerhouse Museum is the latest exhibition by Japanese art collective teamLab. Featuring eight interactive light installations never seen in Australia, Future Park is exclusive to the Powerhouse Museum. Read our info post here.
     
  • Mammoths at Australian Museum. Rule out myths, learn new facts and get up close to the world's most intact 42,000 year old baby wooly mammoth! This interactive exhibition will have your little ones wrestling with mammoths, touch mammoth fur, tusks and walk past life size replicas of mammoths and so much more! Checkout the awesome school holiday activities coming up at the Australian Museum too! Read our review here.
     
  • Pipilotti Rist: Sip my Ocean at MCA. Pipilotti's vivid projections explore the relationship between nature, the body and technology and takes you outside of your comfort zone with rooms of hi fi projections. Lay down on beds to view projections, walk through the Instagrammable Pixel Forest and moreRead our review here.

  • Tiger Trek at Taronga Zoo is a great experience to see critically endangered Sumatran Tigers face-to-face. Read our review here.

  • Titanic The Exhibition at Moore Park. See the world’s largest and most comprehensive touring exhibition with 10 new exhibits including a Titanic VIRTUAL REALITY experience that lets you dive to the wreck, new artefacts and a new learning gallery! Must close in February. Read our info post here.

  • Wind in the Willows at Royal Botanic Garden continues its well-loved summer tradition returning to the beautiful surrounds of the Royal Botanic Garden from Friday 5th to Sunday 28th of January 2018Read our info post here

Also checkout these great places in July ... entertain them for hours to avoid cabin fever!

  • The Penguin Expedition at Sea Life Sydney Aquarium - Visitors are invited to see a colony of King and Gentoo Penguins up close onboard a little raft. It is the first of its kind and the experience is included in your entry ticket when you visit the Sea Life Sydney Aquarium.
    Read our review here.
     
  • Wiggles Exhibition at Powerhouse Museum - A revamp of the old space, the Wiggles Exhibition is sure to entertain your little ones these holidays and it's here to stay and part of your Powerhouse ticket! Wiggles' favourite characters Dorothy the Dinosaur, Wags the Dog, Henry the Octopus and Captain Feathersword remain part of the exhibition however profiles of latest members Lachy, Emma and Simon along with some of their precious items and new interactive activities have been added to the new exhibition. Read our review here.
     
  • The Room of Lucky Charms at the Museum of Contemporary Art Australia (MCA). A NEW contemporary art installation featuring 600 soft sculptural good luck charms opened recently at the MCA and we love it! Room of Lucky Charms (2017) is a multi-sensory work created by Melbourne-based artist Kate Beynon for the sixth annual Bella Room Commission. Read more info here.
     
  • Our Top 5 things to do at the Australian Museum - The Australian Museum is always a great place for babies, toddlers, their parents and carers. There's always a new exhibition on that will tickle your little one's fancy, school holiday activities, free activities for under 5s during the week as well as weekday activities during term. Read Our top 5 permanent things to do at the Australian Museum here.

For more ideas and reviews for what to do with kids around Sydney, head to our blog where you will find reviews as well as useful guides like our Daily Spots List as well as parents roomsplaygroundsbeaches & pools and more!

West Life Size Monopoly Game - Highpoint Shopping Centre - Melbourne

Challenge your friends and family to a life size game of Monopoly…but with a twist. Traditional Monopoly locations such as Piccadilly and Mayfair, are replaced with iconic locations in the West including Williamstown Pier, Whitten Oval and Flemington Racecourse! Thank you to Kel from Melbourne Minor for these great pics and great video!

 Photo credit: @melbourneminor

Photo credit: @melbourneminor

Work your way around the board, test your knowledge of the west and try your luck at scoring your share in over $5,000 worth of prizes! FREE and on until Sunday 24th December.

 Photo credit: @melbourneminor

Photo credit: @melbourneminor

 Photo credit: @melbourneminor

Photo credit: @melbourneminor

For more information and the skip the queue, head to Highpoint's dedicated website.

For more ideas of what to do with the kids in Melbourne, checkout our Website, our Daily Spots ListCBD Spots or Blog.

ArtVo Pop Up at Crown - Review - Melbourne

There's nothing better than ArtVo than FREE Christmas ArtVo painted by the ArtVo Melbourne crew through the Crown complex!

 Photo credit: @melbourneminor

Photo credit: @melbourneminor

I remember it like it was yesterday when Kel and the Melbourne Minor gang popped into the ArtVo Melbourne exhibition to experience this fully interactive and selfie friendly exhibition. If you don't, checkout Kel's review of ArtVo here. 

 Photo credit: @melbourneminor

Photo credit: @melbourneminor

The Melbourne Minor checked out the eight freshly hand painted new walls at Crown last weekend and suggested a brilliant idea! If you need a Christmas card photo then the Christmas ArtVo Pop Up has you covered!

 Photo credit: @melbourneminor

Photo credit: @melbourneminor

There is one wall by the epic Christmas Tree in the atrium and the rest are scattered around on level one, near the cinema.  

 Photo credit: @melbourneminor

Photo credit: @melbourneminor

 Photo credit: @melbourneminor

Photo credit: @melbourneminor

While you're there, visit the Crown Christmas Spectacular Show. The show runs on the half hour daily from 10am to midnight. It happens where the giant baubles are in the atrium. 

 Photo credit: @melbourneminor

Photo credit: @melbourneminor

Thank you Kel for the fantastic pics and info! To follow Kel and the gang at Melbourne Minor, head to their Instagram page.
For more information on Crown events and the Christmas Spectacular Show, head to their website.

For more ideas on Christmas activities and events in Melbourne, head to our special Christmas 2017 post.

For more ideas of what to do with the kids in Melbourne, checkout our WebsiteDaily Spots ListCBD Spots or Blog.

NGV Triennial - December 2017 - Info - Melbourne

OUR REVIEW ON THE BLOG NOW

The inaugural NGV Triennial is coming this December at the National Gallery of Victoria (NGV). This free and exclusive unprecedented and large-scale exhibition of international art, design and architecture will open on Friday 15th December 2017. It will showcase major works by more than 100 artists and designers from 32 countries across all four levels of NGV International. Yep it's going to be BIG!!

  Photo credit: NGV

Photo credit: NGV

Traversing established, mid-career and emerging practitioners at the forefront of their fields, the NGV Triennial artists and designers have been selected for their diversity and dynamism of practice, including those embracing cutting edge technologies, from 3D printing to robotics, as well as performance, film, painting, drawing, installation and fashion design, tapestry and sculpture.

Highlights from the NGV Triennial will be a number of world-premiere NGV-led commissions, including a major new participatory work by Yayoi Kusama (Japan), in which kids and adults will ‘obliterate’ a room with flowers (oh my god yes!). A 15.8m long reclining Buddha sculpture adorned with 3D scanned and cast replicas of classical Greco-Roman sculptures by Xu Zhen (China), creating a meeting of Eastern and Western art traditions; an installation of elaborate, Marie Antoinette-inspired haute couture gowns from Chinese couturier Guo Pei; and a project by ‘smell designer’ Sissel Tolaas (Norway), in which she will recreate the scents of Melbourne. Wow!

  Photo credit: hirshhorn - Yayoi Kusama with recent works in Tokyo

Photo credit: hirshhorn - Yayoi Kusama with recent works in Tokyo

  Photo credit: @busycitkids - Obliteration Room QAGOMA

Photo credit: @busycitkids - Obliteration Room QAGOMA

We are also very excited that teamLab will premiere a new interactive and fully immersive digital installation inspired by human, digital and spatial relationships and connections, commissioned by the NGV. Expressing these themes through the turbulent lens of the vortex, teamLab will transform a large gallery space into an enveloping environment of swirling illumination that responds as water would to human presence and movement. Sounds amazing!

  Photo credit: NGV - teamLab

Photo credit: NGV - teamLab

Reko Rennie’s commanding works exploring his Aboriginal identity through contemporary interdisciplinary media including painting, aerosol, collage and installation will also be on display at the NGV Triennial. We love him! Rennie will undertake two new large-scale site-specific works that intervene within the urban and architectural landscape of Melbourne; one at the famous flower clock on St Kilda road using his signature patterning expressed as landscape and the other in the interior of the NGV International. Wow!

  Photo credit: City of Sydney - Reko Rennie - Always was always will be

Photo credit: City of Sydney - Reko Rennie - Always was always will be

Brothers Fernando and Humberto Campana will exhibit Victoria Amazonica 2017 in collaboration with Yarrenyty Arltere Artists, the Centre for Appropriate Technology and Alice Springs based designer Elliat Rich. Drawing upon shared motifs from across cultures and geographies referencing waterways, the collaboration will present a vividly colorful upholstered dome, a meeting point and resting place to welcome visitors to the NGV Triennial. 

  Photo credit: NGV - Estudio Campana - Dome

Photo credit: NGV - Estudio Campana - Dome

Presenting a snapshot of international contemporary art and design, the NGV Triennial will give voice to some of the pressing issues that are being explored by artists and designers today, including the social, cultural, scientific and physiological questions of our contemporary world.

Tony Ellwood, Director from the NGV said, ‘We believe that the ambition, depth and diversity of the artists and designers in the inaugural NGV Triennial will ensure our audience has a truly unforgettable cultural experience. This exhibition offers an unprecedented opportunity to build the NGV’s collection of contemporary art and design, and we hope the NGV Triennial will become a critical and ongoing asset for Victoria.’

The NGV Triennial will be on display at NGV International from Friday 15th December 2017 to Sunday 15th April 2018. Entry is FREE.

For more information regarding the NGV Triennial, head to the NGV's dedicated website.

For more ideas of what to do with the kids in Melbourne, checkout our Website, our Daily Spots ListCBD Spots or Blog.

State Library of Victoria's Play Pod party - Our last trip to the market

Join the State Library of Victoria in the Courtyard for their next FREE Play Pod party! The last one was so much fun - see Kate's review here. 

This next one is to celebrate the NEW Play Pod theme inspired by Lorin Clarke and Mitch Vane’s Our last trip to the market! The party will be held on Wednesday 6th of December from 10am to 1pm and will be perfect for kids 5 and under, their carers and parents!

playpodstatelibraryofvictoria

Join the State Library of Victoria for a morning of songs, dancing, craft activities and games. Kids can make some fruit to add to their fruit salad mural and create your own shopping list to take home.

There will also be entertainment by swing and jazz musicians All Day Fritz and their very own master storytellers and there will be special play areas setup for babies and toddlers.

playpodstatelibraryofvictoria

There will be the following performances from 10.30am to 12.20pm:

• 10.30-10.50am: Baby bounce (stories, songs and rhymes for children aged 2 and under)
• 11-11.20am: All Day Fritz
• 11.30-11.50am: Storytime (stories, songs, rhymes and creative activities for children aged 3 to 5)
• 12-12.20pm: All Day Fritz

And the following activities from 10am to 1pm:

• Kids can make a shopping list
• Kids can make some fruit to add to our fruit salad mural

Make sure you checkout the NEW Play Pod theme on the day or next time you're in!

Our tips for the Play Pod:

  • Entry is FREE, woo hoo!
  • The space isn’t big and can get quite busy on weekends and school holidays – so go early when the library opens at 10am.
  • Be aware that the doors into The Courtyard stay open at all times.  If you have a little one who likes to go off exploring, you will have to keep an eye on them.
  • No food or drink is to be consumed within The Courtyard, except for bottled water.
  • Pram parking is available in The Courtyard or you can check them into the Cloakroom at the Welcome Desk on level one.
  • State Library of Victoria is very family friendly with designated baby-change and feeding areas located adjacent to The Courtyard.
To BUY the 'Our last trip to the market' book, head to this link.

If you're interested in our other Play Pod reviews, head to this link.

For more ideas of what to do with the kids in Melbourne, checkout our Daily Spots ListCBD Spots or Blog.

To find out about other kid events coming up at the State Library of Victoria, checkout their website.

This post contains one affiliate link. You don’t pay any extra and I earn a small commission to help pay for website hosting costs. Read more in my Disclosure Policy here.

State Library of Victoria - Play Pod : The Very Noisy Bear - Review

Kate and her little ones joined the State Library of Victoria today for a morning of songs, dancing, craft activities and games to launch their NEW Play Pod theme inspired by Nick Bland's The Very Noisy Bear. And what a great morning they had!
 Photo credit: @kateflatman

Photo credit: @kateflatman

The Play Pod is the State Library of Victoria's program for children aged five and under, packed with activities to read, create and play. With a new theme every season, Play Pod is always changing, fun and interactive, so children are free to explore and engage with the support of their parents and carers.  

 Photo credit: @kateflatman

Photo credit: @kateflatman

There is music in the air in the Jingle Jangle Jungle! Can Bear's friends help him find the perfect instrument to play? How cute is this new theme!

 Photo credit: @kateflatman

Photo credit: @kateflatman

 Photo credit: @kateflatman

Photo credit: @kateflatman

Bears are everywhere in the Play Pod's new theme!

 Photo credit: @kateflatman

Photo credit: @kateflatman

Kids can use craft materials as part of the new theme, to create the Jingle Jangle Jungle and add their creation to the Play Pod poster.

 Photo credit: @kateflatman

Photo credit: @kateflatman

 Photo credit: @kateflatman

Photo credit: @kateflatman

The Play Pod launch included a Baby Bounce session where library staff read The Very Noisy Bear, sang songs and rhymes.

 Photo credit: @kateflatman

Photo credit: @kateflatman

Kids were also spoilt at the launch party with an African drumming performance!

 Photo credit: @kateflatman

Photo credit: @kateflatman

Kids can also make their own jungle picture, shaker, bear face and play with musical instruments and jungle costumes - oh what fun!

 Photo credit: @kateflatman

Photo credit: @kateflatman

 Photo credit: @kateflatman

Photo credit: @kateflatman

 Photo credit: @kateflatman

Photo credit: @kateflatman

Checkout the new theme when you pop into the city soon! Thanks Kate for the great pics and filling us in today!

Our tips:

  • Entry is FREE, woo hoo!
  • The space isn’t big and can get quite busy on weekends and school holidays – so go early when the library opens at 10am.
  • Be aware that the doors into The Courtyard stay open at all times.  If you have a little one who likes to go off exploring, you will have to keep an eye on them.
  • No food or drink is to be consumed within The Courtyard, except for bottled water.
  • Pram parking is available in The Courtyard or you can check them into the Cloakroom at the Welcome Desk on level one.
  • State Library of Victoria is very family friendly with designated baby-change and feeding areas located adjacent to The Courtyard.
To BUY the book, head to this link.

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If you're interested in our other Play Pod reviews, head to this link.

For more ideas of what to do with the kids in Melbourne, checkout our Daily Spots ListCBD Spots or Blog.

To find out about other kid events coming up at the State Library of Victoria, checkout their website.